Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Advice needed (part 2)

This one isn't quite as easy as yesterday's dilemma.

As regular readers know, I have been stitching Cinderella on and off for almost 2 years.  I was asked by my mum, who was asked by her sister (my aunt obviously!) to stitch it for her daughter (my cousin!).  They sent me the money for the fabric, kreinik and beads and provided the magazine with the chart.  I said I would pay for the DMC as I had a lot of what was needed.

Yesterday I messaged my cousin on facebook (I have only met her twice in my life so this is the only contact we have been having), told her I was nearing the end of the cross stitching and could she start looking around for suitable alphabets to personalise the design as it will be a birth sampler for her daughter.  She told me to find one to which I explained that I don't know her taste and didn't want to choose the wrong thing.  She then went on google images and chose pretty much the first one she saw, which is a pretty one but is SO wrong for Cinderella.  It's this...which is one I bought at Christmas to do my ORTS ornie.  She wants her daughter's full name which is 18 letters in total with 2 spaces. Each of those letters is around an inch wide so I explained that it would be too big (not stitching over one for her which would actually still be over 9") and that she needed to find something smaller.  I suggested a pretty alphabet but told her we would have to pay for it - I'm no copyright pirate!  It costs a whole £2.52!  This is it here.

She has then told me to finish the 'picture' and send it to her "She'll sort it out." That was after telling me that she has a frame that she '...thinks will do.'  Anyone see why I am feeling a bit cross yet?

So my dilemma is do I...

  1. Finish the 'picture' and send it back.
  2. Finish it, stitch the alphabet she wants, hate it and send it back.
  3. Send it back as it is now - after all if she can finish the birth details, she can finish the 'picture'.
  4. Send my aunt the money back and keep Cinders for myself.
  5. Put Cinders away for a month and see how I feel about it once I am calmer and not so annoyed.
  6. Just keep it anyway, after all, how many hours have I stitched on it?
Number 6 is out because to me that just feels immoral.  At the end of the day no matter how ********** (submit any word that means irritated or annoyed for the asterisks) I am, they have still paid for the materials mostly and it feels like theft.  

So assuming anyone has got this far, and well done if you have, what would you do???  If you have any other options that I haven't considered please let me know.  If you would prefer to email me rather than leave a message my email is sharon j stevens at msn dot com.  Obviously that is without the spaces and with the appropriate symbols inserted.

Currently Cinders is on my WIP shelf as I haven't got the heart to work on her at the moment which is a shame as I got a lot done today!


Shirlee said...

I'm responding via email.

Brita said...

I have seen most of my cousins about three or four times in my life - and I think I would found it hard to commit to stitching something this large in the first place for someone I hardly know.
But having done so, there's only one answer for me: 1. finish the design and let her add the lettering herself.
Otherwise I'd feel I let my mother and my aunt down. And I couldn't just leave it unfinished but I also wouldn't stitch something I totally don't like without being absolutely sure my cousin could even envision how it's going to look like. Which seems to be the case here.

Linda said...

Sounds like your cousin could care less about getting the finished design. If it were me, I would repay whatever they paid and keep it for myself. I think your mom would understand.


Mii Stitch said...

Family drama!! Sounds like your cousin doesn't really care! Personally I would finish the picture because it has been paid for and hand it over for her to finish it the way she'd like... like this you can't be blamed for anything! :) So what if it doesn't look right to you? Looks like you never see each other. You are two different person with obviously different taste... Don't intend to upset anyone when typing this :)

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

It sounds like your Aunt commissioned this for her Grandaughter so I would regard her as the client not your cousin.

Could you have a chat with your Aunt and explain font dilemma and also the framing issue. Say that cross stitch framing is a bit of a specialist job and you are concerned that your cousin can't afford it and will settle for something not quite right. Say that you really want your Aunt to have a piece she can be proud to present to her Grandaughter!

Take your cue from her response. If she doesn't seem bothered about the finished piece either then I'd let it lie for a while and see if they follow up on your progress. If however she wants it to be perfect I am sure you can both make it happen.

Emma/Itzy said...

I would ask the cousin out right if she still actually wanted the piece and go from there...if not speak to your aunt and see what she has to say about it

stitchersanon said...

Maybe she just doesnt want to put you out and feels she cant tell you what she really wants. I wouldnt even have asked what alphabet she wants: unless people stitch they dont understand. If you want, pm me and give a piccie of your work and I will chart some alternatives for you to send to cus they will be mine they are copyright free so no worries xx

stitchersanon said...

Maybe she just doesnt want to put you out and feels she cant tell you what she really wants. I wouldnt even have asked what alphabet she wants: unless people stitch they dont understand. If you want, pm me and give a piccie of your work and I will chart some alternatives for you to send to cus they will be mine they are copyright free so no worries xx

Vicky L said...

Finish the picture. After You are done, ask again about the fonts. Maybe you caught her at a not so great mood. What ever her answer is at this point, I will do whatever she says. I would , also, talk to your aunt about it too. Good luck!

CalamityJr said...

Oh, this is a tough one. It's so hard when a non-stitcher has no idea what you've put into a piece. Reading the earlier responses, I think I'd go with the commission thought to maybe erase a bit of the hurt and explaining the dilemma to your aunt with the hope that she'll be more understanding and help you toward the correct finish finish. As for the alphabet, you should choose, as you'll be even more disappointed if it's too "off" for the design. Gaynor will be happy if you accept her offer, I'm sure, so no more expense either. In the end, you need to do what puts your heart at rest. So sorry you have to struggle with this.

Miss Lilly said...

Ooh this is a tough one! I always like to take a step back from the situation when I feel like my emotions are running high. I would say to leave it for a week and try to push it to the back of your mind. Come back to it later, refreshed, and try to come up with a solution.

I do think Jo has a really good idea though - speak to the commissioner and not the recipient.

Good luck :)

Justine said...

Please don't take this the wrong way as you know I love your stitching and I am totally on your side. But I am going to play devil's advocate here and see it from your cousin's point of view. I am imagining a cousin who doesn't stitch and has no idea how much work you've put into this gorgeous picture. goes.
You ask her to choose an alphabet...she asks you to choose what you think is appropriate, maybe because she trusts your judgment more than her own.
You tell her you can' she chooses something that she inks will look nice.
You tell her it won't work...she doesn't know what to do so she tells you to just send it as it is as she is at a loss to know what to choose now.
As for the framing...well maybe she doesn't know that cross stitch needs to be stretched and framed properly, or maybe she has an inkling of how much this will cost and can't afford it.
If you feel you can, why not go back to her and suggest that you choose the alphabet (or give her two or three to choose from - Gaynor's offer is very generous) and ask what her budget is and likes/dislikes or framing, and sort it put yourself? That way you will finish up with something you're both happy with. Or if not, speak to your aunt or your mum as others have suggested. You never know, she may not actually want to have the sampler in which case you can keep Cinders for yourself!
Of course, she may just be a mean and horrid witch who doesn't appreciate the effort you have gone to - in which case pay them back for the fabric etc and KEEP CINDERS!
Hope this has helped and not offended you. I have made things that went unappreciated and I felt horrible about it. You just need to find a way to get out of this that you are both happy with.

Cath said...

Ohh, I know how peeved you feel. Years ago I stitched something for my Mum. It was only small , but very personal. My sister also stitched something for her around the same time . My sisters gift got put up , and a couple of weeks later , my mum couldn't even remember what it was that I had stitched. Needless to say , I haven't stitched anything for her since , even though I've seen lots of lovely projects that would really suit. It still hurts that U put effort into something that wasn't appreciated . I now try to only stitch for people that WILL appreciate it, though sometimes I mis-judge .

I would speak to your Mum first off and discuss the prospect of chatting with your Aunt before doing anything. Finish Cinders anyway , then with your Mums' and Aunts' permission find a suitable font and framing can be discussed later.
Maybe your cousin will understand when she sees the finished project.
Hope this works out to your satisfaction. x

Marlene Jones said...

A lot depends on how close your mum is to her sister, forget the cousin she sounds a user, without a thought for all your hard work. I would finish it if you feel you can, if not send every thing back to them, with a note saying it is hard to finish, when the phont does not fit the whole design.
It is so infuriating, I almost never pass on my work to family.

Annie said...

I totally see your dilemma. It is a rough one. All the previous comments have given good advice, and I agree for the most part that, tough as it is, you probably need to finish your part and send it on to her to do as she wants. It's kind of like selling a house and then driving by years later and seeing all the changes the "new" owners made. You may not like them, but it's no longer your house.
I understand that the stitching is different because you've put hours upon hours of labor and love into it, but bottom line (harsh as it sounds) is once you hand it off it's no longer yours.
I do have one idea, though....what if you contacted your mom or your aunt and explained the situation. Would your aunt be willing to pay for framing as part of the gift to her daughter?
I like your idea of putting it in "time out" for awhile. You can take some time to wrap your head around the situation, and maybe then you can detach a little as you finish it.
Best of luck with whatever you do!

Rhona said... drama! I feel for you! My advice (for what it's worth!) would be to step back from the whole thing, leave the project for a couple of weeks, then go back to it. People who don't cross stitch have no idea about the time (and love) that goes in to stitching such a piece. I think you should add the type of lettering you feel would look best on the design - it would be such a shame to spoil such wonderful work with a bad lettering choice!You might also have to be quite blunt about how the stitching is famed....subtlety doesn't work in my experience. Good luck, and let us know what happens.

Jan Jones said...

For my 2 cents. I like Jo's answer. Work it out with the person who commissioned and paid for the work in the first place not the recipient.

Annette-California said...

OH boy! I so understand what happened. You've been given some great advise. Take stitchersanon offer for getting a correct size alphabet. Then do stitch the name as requested. Then after learning about how much for framing and what your aunt will spend - have it framed.
At least you will know that aaaaall your hours spent on this work of love/art stitched by you - will be ready for display.
Now for the future you will have had this experience and have a better idea what to expect.
I think Justine has the gest of it about you Aunt "knows she does not understand about the sizing of the alphabet and chose a font that appealed to her. But no you can't fit it in the sampler so do chose one that does. And just "DO your Best". This way you keep to your word and you will feel good about yourself. AND PLEASE "take lots of photos when its all done being stitched and then after its framed". Hey at least she still wants it. I remember stitching something for my aunt that was very special and gave it to her (years ago). Then the next time I went over to her home - it was hanging in the bathroom:( I told myself no more in the future for her. OH lord I just recalled something.....I have a project that I was stitching for my best friend (11 yrs ago) and sent her a photo of the what it would be. She called ma and said "Oh it will look great in our guest bathroom". It's still left untouched from the day she told me that. Since then she has asked me about it. I came clean and told her NOPE I won;t finish it because of what you told me & I so lost my mojo on that piece. She actually laughed. whatever!! sending you hugs Sharon love Annette

Meari said...

It sounds to me that she doesn't care about the piece. However, I do realize there's two sides of the story. Sometimes, communication via online doesn't get across correctly and is misunderstood. If it were me, I'd find out if she really wants the piece, or maybe your aunt would like it instead.

SoCal Debbie said...

I think you should choose any type of font that will fit that long name so it is appropriate for Cinderella. Then contact your aunt about framing costs. The offer by stitchersanon was so nice!