San Francisco, CA
I had a horribly unprofessional experience with Michael the owner. When I asked if he could make slipcovers, using as a pattern -the slipcover I handed to him (custom made 8 yrs earlier for $100 a piece -great reversible fabric that fit beautifully), he said he could. I asked how long it would take to make eight. He indicated that it would be two weeks - a month if I waited until closer to the holidays. It was September seventeenth.
I told him my cap was $125, what fabrics did he have that would meet this criteria -there is a nice pattern in a book he displayed? He handed me a book to take home, indicating any thing in this book would do - that the displayed book was discontinued fabrics.
I took home the book and three days later returned with the desired fabric selection. Once again, I asked about how long this would take and how much it would cost. He played with his computer and tape measure for about five minutes and he said he couldn't do it for less than $1600. I said that's too much. He asked if I could do $150 each. I asked if that was with a two week delivery and he said yes. I agreed to pay for 8 slipcovers; modeled after the one I gave him for pattern, that would be ready in two weeks. He said that he would need half now so that he could order the fabric.
Two weeks went by and I called to see if they covers were ready: they were not. He said the fabric just arrived he'll have them done in another week. I called again one week later to hear that I was not his only job and he's working on it. I stopped by with my husband and told him we were having a Halloween party on the 24Th October and I need them. He assured us his mother was working on them and they would be ready the Tuesday before but he needed a chair to make sure they fit. He came by the next day to fetch it.
Tuesday came and went. Michael left a message on Wednesday saying he would deliver the slipcovers between 4 and 6 on Friday evening. I called and said that time would not work - we agreed delivery would take place between 12 and 2.
I called Michael at 2:30 and he said that they weren't done. I indicated my disappointment with him as I had to rearrange the seating, using two naked chairs. I asked him when they would be done but didn't believe anything he was telling me at this point. I told him I would be in the store on Monday after noon.
On Monday I called him and told him I'd be there at 4:30. I asked him, considering the delay would he honor my original cost cap of $125? He said I'll call you right back (he said that every time I called - I had to press forward to achieve dialogue). A moment later the phone rings - I paraphrase: This is Jack, I work next door and I am a friend of Michael's. You can't negotiate a new price - he already gave you a discount - these should have cost you $180 a piece. I told him that I would be there at 4:30 we could discuss it then but he kept making inane arguments for Michael. His voice elevated to screams but I kept repeating that I would be there at 4:30 and finally hung up. Just a few seconds later Michael calls to say, "...that 4:30 isn't going to work for me but we can deliver tomorrow at anytime that works for you - just let me know."
After leaving word that I would be in his shop at noon Tuesday, I arrived a few minutes early. I told him that we should probably fit the covers and make sure everything is fine. He finished correcting a fabric order he had gotten wrong with another customer that had walked in with me. He turned to me, looking at the one on the chair already. The zipper was green; my fabric choice was red. The seams were fraying; the gussets were different sizes on the left or right of the seat. We looked at the next one. It had similar issues plus. The third one he could not zip completely. I said that I think these would have been worth the wait if they were consistently good but...
the next words out of his mouth were, "Get the F@#k out of my store." I asked if he didn't want the balance but he only repeated his sentence. I gathered the fabric and my chair and walked out. He followed me to the door yelling, "Racist, racist, racist."
I answered over my shoulder that he should invest in a dictionary and kept walking. His neighbor came out to follow me down the street saying you can't take things from a store without paying for them. I said I have a statement that says I did. You must be Jack. "Yes I am! You can't take things from a store without paying for them!" I repeated the fact that I had a statement that indicates I did - what does Michael have? I stuffed everything in the car and drove home.
The moral of the story - do not do business with a man and his friend, who seem to be playing at retail service.