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Forum > Miscellaneous > Dry cleaner lost the outfit that I made and I'm just sick about it!! ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Dry cleaner lost the outfit that I made and I'm just sick about it!!
Carol Mendoza
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Carol Mendoza  Friend of PR
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Date: 1/27/12 10:56 PM

I need help in determining how much value to put on my lined wool skirt and sparkly top that I made for my Christmas outfit. I took it to the dry cleaner last Tuesday and they can't find it. They want me to wait until Monday while they contact customers this weekend to see if it got mixed in with one of the larger orders. If they can't locate it I need to be prepared with a $ value on it.

I have the receipts for the fabric purchases and the pictures of course (top and skirt) but I have no idea how to figure my time as a price.

Anyone have any idea as to what number I should use?
-- Edited on 1/27/12 10:59 PM --

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Bernina 780; 440QE; Vintage 121; Babylock Evolution

mastdenman
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mastdenman  Friend of PR
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Subject: Dry cleaner lost the outfit that I made and Im just sick about it!! Date: 1/27/12 11:04 PM

Do a little snoop shopping and use a comparable number. $80 would be cheap for a lined wool skirt. Maybe $100 would be more reasonable. The top would go for at least $60. That would at least either make them look harder for it or give you a nice place to start negotiating.
-- Edited on 1/27/12 11:12 PM --

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Marilyn

January 2009 to January 2010 81 yards out and 71yards in January 2010 to the present 106.7 yards out and 146.5 yards in. January 2011 to the present: 47 yards out and 69 yards in.

threaddy
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Date: 1/27/12 11:10 PM

Dry Cleaners are the worst!! I took a hand knit cable sweater in to be dry cleaned and they steamed it! So, not only were all the cables gone but it was 10X larger...it had to be thrown away. Do you know how long it takes to hand knit a sweater? Horrible. Then I took in some hand painted burlap curtains...fabric irreplaceable, from Germany. They came back in shreds...huge chunks gone....with a "sorry, we won't charge you for cleaning those"

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"The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem." Theodore Rubin
"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life's about creating yourself." George Bernard Shaw
Dan 9:24-27

Bernina vintage and computerized, Bernina and BL sergers , BLcoverstitch (a stray Pfaff and Viking followed me home too)

marec
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In reply to Carol Mendoza


Date: 1/28/12 1:44 AM

Oh, I'm sorry!! I agree with mastdenman to do some snoop shopping online. I would go higher than $180 though. Your time is worth quite a bit ($25.00/hr at least), and the use of your machine, and the anguish of losing your outfit. Figure out an actual number, and then double it. That's your starting place for negotiation. Write everything down about the interchange in which they said to wait until Monday. Find the dry cleaners assc number and write that down. Find the Better Business Bureau number and have that handy also.

If your outfit is returned, examine it closely before accepting it. If you think it has been worn, or is damaged, make a note of that. (I worked with a woman who would buy clothing and routinely return it after wearing it to an event!) Take photos while at the dry cleaners.

If it doesn't come back on Monday, present them with a bill and a date to settle by.

I am not really this harda** normally, but was a union representative/officer for most of my career as a teacher. People take advantage of those of us who want to be understanding.

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my blog: http://kf-biblioblog.blogspot.com/
Sewing through my pattern stash-145
completed.

Doris W. in TN
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Doris W. in TN  Friend of PR
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In reply to Carol Mendoza


Date: 1/28/12 3:27 AM

How awful! I would do snoop shopping as suggested, or ask at least 3x what I have invested in hard materials cost. If the fabric was bought on sale, figure full retail because that is what it would cost to replace it.

Or, if there are custom clothing shops in your area, they might be willing to help you price it.

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iPad's auto-correct is my enema.

Tom P
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In reply to Carol Mendoza


Date: 1/28/12 10:09 AM

I'm no lawyer, but what I've been able to gather from the People's Court is that the number you need is replacement value. Since the skirt and hat were new, there's no depreciation. I'd definitely be sure to stress the new part.

Aside from that, it's the price you would be able to sell them for. That number is certain not to value your labor very highly, but that's the deal. You need to find a comparable pair of items and use those prices.

If it took you a couple of days to make, and you value your time at $25 an hour, and you give them a number of $450 for a wool skirt, you may end up getting nothing from the dry cleaner and trying to explain it in small claims court. If you're not currently selling your stuff, you may really not like that outcome.

The best outcome would totally be for the cleaner to find it. It sounds like they at least are trying to find it. Mine treat me like an idiot when I tell them not to press my dry clean only corduroy pants.

SheBear0320
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Date: 1/28/12 11:54 AM

Keep in mind the outfit you made is a custom made outfit so be sure you are determining your price on that basis on not on what you could pick it up for in a mass-produced market.

Custom work is custom work and definitely has a much higher value than assembly line production.

I just spent 6 hours this week basting and re-pressing pleats in a kilt that had been ruined by the horrid pressing job done at a drycleaners. Most drycleaners are not about quality they are about quick in and out turnaround time.



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Sheila
"sewing very slowly to fill an empty closet"

2014 Stash Busting Sew-Along:
80.0 yards sewn (as of 11/23/14)
135.5 yards purchased (as of 11/23/14)

marec
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In reply to Tom P


Date: 1/28/12 12:12 PM

Quote:
If it took you a couple of days to make, and you value your time at $25 an hour, and you give them a number of $450 for a wool skirt, you may end up getting nothing from the dry cleaner and trying to explain it in small claims court.


Tom, I suggested adding in labor as a way to open the negotiations. Ideally, the dry cleaners have already thought all this through and are willing to discuss a fair settlement.

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my blog: http://kf-biblioblog.blogspot.com/
Sewing through my pattern stash-145
completed.

poorpigling

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In reply to Carol Mendoza


Date: 1/28/12 1:05 PM


Carol, so sorry this happened.. and that loss of threaddy's fabric from Germany would have made me ill.

Not quite as bad as the dry cleaner sending my DH home with an obviously handmade heirloom quilt of someone elses.. Instead of my own.. both the owner of the other quilt and I were not happy about that..

I learned then not to ever trust a dry cleaner with anything precious..

Luckily we do have one fabulous dry cleaner here in the metroplex that has customer service above and beyond what you would expect.. and they know how to clean your garments etc.. or they will refuse the item.. But even knowing that.. I no longer send out my most precious items..

Janie Viers
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Janie Viers  Friend of PR
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Subject: Dry cleaner lost the outfit that I made and Im just sick about it!! Date: 1/28/12 3:50 PM

I agree that if your garmet "shows up" you should check it carefully. It is sad but sometimes people who work at the dry cleaners are not of the hightest ethics and might use the garment as a "loaner". Same as some people buy a expensive outfit, wear it once ad then return it to the store for full refund.

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JanieV

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