Rates for sewing

I was contacted to sew some valances and the person wanted to know how
much my rate was. I have never sewn for anyone to be paid for it, but I
would like to start as I enjoy sewing. Can anyone help me by suggesting
how much to charge to sew for her. She is getting the material to do them.
Just want to say...
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My dear the answer is simple; what is your professional time worth?
While comparing rates to other seamstresses in your area may be fine and well, you don't know their costs.
Is the customer supplying all materials, or just fabric? What about threads, backing, and so forth?
Will you charge by the hour or project? Is the material difficult to work with, and or will any special requests make it more so?
Again, think about what your skills are worth, and don't make the mistake of selling yourself short. Once you start under charging it is VERY difficult to get your prices up. Customers will come with tons of work and utter "but you only charged.... last time".
Yes, you enjoy sewing, we all (hopefully) enjoy our jobs as well, but that does not mean we would do it unpaid.
Finally have always found the key is being professional about things. Doesn't matter if you are working from home or a workroom, it will not do if customers think you are taking in work for pin money or because you "like" doing it. Find people respect one more if one conducts the job professionally and delivers quality work.
Best of luck,
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You just reminded me of more of the variables in doing a job for someone else. I've been out of the market a long time and couldn't remember everything involved. Emily
Reply to
Emily Bengston
Another piece of friendly advice, be very wary and indeed stingy of offering discounts. Once you start that, you will have great difficulty getting that customer to accept full prices. If someone is offers to send you business, wait until those customers start showing up before discussing any discounts.
Just finished restoring, mending and repairing a huge vintage lace tablecloth for a good customer, and charged my usual rate. Customer was a bit taken a back by the bill, but held firm. Cleaning and mending old lace is hard work, especially blocking and pressing after washing. If one charged a lower rate, am quite sure he would send several more (he mentioned he has bags full), and I would be caught between a rock and hard place.
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