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Charging Fellow Framers

Discussion in 'Picture Framing Business Issues' started by shayla, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    I'm curious as to how you handle selling supplies/services to fellow framers. In the past, the previous owner charged full retail for any mats, glass, etc... they might need. It only comes up a couple of times a year, but I feel like a deer in the headlights trying to figure out the price. (Now I'm imagining a deer with a calculator. Anyway....) Say somebody needed a mat that you had to order in. Would you charge them wholesale, retail, or somewhere in between? I can see upsides to all three ways.
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  2. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    Cost plus 10%.

    I would hope they give me the same break.
    Joe B likes this.
  3. wpfay

    wpfay Angry Badger

    1. I would not special order a mat or anything else for a fellow framing business owner. They can order it themselves.
    B. I would only offer what is in stock and the cost would be to replace the item at their earliest convenience (next delivery). They lose their ability to "borrow" until the original item is replaced.

    I have a problem with my "competition" offering goods and/or services that they know they can't fulfill. If they come to me to do their job for them, I charge $80.00/hour plus materials at a normal markup. That said, I don't mind lending a hand when things go south, as it has happened to me.
  4. Ylva

    Ylva SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Depends on the framer. I have been helped out many times and don't mind paying for it. It is usually when something is discontinued and someone has some stock. I gladly pay for it, plus shipping as those costs are charged to customer anyway.

    For good friends, I don't charge anything. Just my turn to pay it forward.

    Other than that, I would charge cost plus 10%
    Grey Owl likes this.
  5. Andrew Lenz Jr.

    Andrew Lenz Jr. MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    When in doubt, charge them retail. Just expect the same in return. We generally discount to other framers, but not down to cost . . . time is money!

  6. Rick Bergeron - CPF

    Rick Bergeron - CPF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    We traded materials back and forth at replacement cost. Kept records and settled up every few months. Usually it was really close to a wash. We traded quite a bit of partial sheets of matboard. You know.... hate to order a full sheet for a 12 x 16 of something seldom used. Win-Win for both of us.

    Matboard by the united inch cost for partial boards or full sheet. Gotta take the full partial, no cutdowns.
    Length moulding, by the foot cost. Gotta take the full piece, no cutdowns.
    Need an extra sheet of matboard after the order placed. No problem, order it and add to the trade records.
    Slow week, hardly worth the order.... No problem, combine orders and add to the trade records.

    Since we both bought from the same vendors with the same discounts, pricing was not an issue.
    ckelley and shayla like this.
  7. JWB9999999

    JWB9999999 SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    "It depends." I don't have a rule. Most of the time on glass, they can take what they need today and bring me a replacement next week, so no charge at all. With mats, if they need essentially a large/full sheet of something, I'm probably going to charge them something a over cost. Sold half a sheet of matboard to another shop last week for the cost of a full sheet, which equated to a large discount from retail. Reason for that is that I will have to order a full sheet of mat to replace it, and there's no point in me being out of pocket financially just to help them out, but I'm also not trying to sell it to them at retail.
    shayla likes this.
  8. EllenAtHowards

    EllenAtHowards PFG, Picture Framing God

    Sharing/ordering materials is different from doing work. I am happy to order the occasional sheet of matboard for other framers.

    When we got our Wizard before anyone else had a CMC, one or two of our colleagues would have me cut a multi-opening mat, which I was happy to do for a small fee. Then one of them asked me to cut a two-opening mat and I drew the line. I gently explained that I felt she was selling work that she didn't do, and I didn't think that was right. She never asked me again, which suited me fine.
    shayla likes this.
  9. echavez123

    echavez123 MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Charge cost x 2 for material. Labor may be different. I am working with a mirror framing company whose underpinner is down. I am charging them $30 to join a frame, regardless of size. Did 30 last week, and am doing 7 today. Dont what else they are bringing. I would charge a higher labor rate to regular customers.
  10. hangupsgallery

    hangupsgallery MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    You use the term "fellow framers". This to me means friends in good faith and I have no problem selling to these fine folks with whom I share a common bond as framer. I have several framers with whom I have met over the years that I often trade favors with when in a bind. Someone mentioned "time is money" How much is a little good will worth? Been doing this for 40 years now. The money will all work out in the end. Relationships are far more important than a couple of bucks. Is it a piece of scrap.....no charge. Supply or full sheet....cost only. FWIW, but just me.
    cvm, shayla and tedh like this.
  11. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    We've also had another something happen, which I'm wanting to navigate smoothly. Two customers have formed an art business together that involves framing their (high quality) work. A regional supplier opened an account with them, which is fine, since they have a brick and mortar and do use frames. We're on great terms, which we do our best to keep up through honest planning, but it's still a learning curve. So far, I've told them that, while we're happy to design mats for their work, and fit them with our glass, etc... at usual retail cost, if they're buying frames from that mutual supplier, they need to do that part themselves. Awhile back, one said he didn't want to go to the studio to pick a frame, so could he just look at the samples on our wall? It felt weird that someone would choose from our samples, then order the frame from a mutual supplier at wholesale, so I said it would be best if he chose from his own samples. We all want it to work out well, being able to refer folks back and forth to each other, and I'd be interested in hearing from people who've done this.
    FM Framer likes this.
  12. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Like Ted, I charge cost plus 10%. I don't mind helping out if necessary but they better bring along a check or cash - no credit or credit cards.
  13. i-FRAMER

    i-FRAMER MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Most of the framers around me will simply just give what is it needed and have it replaced when they order next. Usually it is stock required for an urgent job that can't wait any longer. There is 1 framer that charges and usually more then then cost, so he tends to be the last resort for everyone else.
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