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Communication from vendors in the middle of a project?

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Hi all, I was just curious what was considered "normal" regarding communicating with vendors during a project. For background DK is making me an anniversary ring (will be a new wedding/engagement ring). I know he's a small shop and very busy, so have been trying to be patient regarding timeline and communication. I last heard from him around Jan 21, when he said that the rough cast was done (yay!) and explained the rest of the process (polishing/cleaning up the cast, stone setting, etc.). The overall production time was 45 days, and I confirmed CAD's the second week in January (so by my calculations the expected end date would have been around the end of February).

I sent DK an email around February 21, and again last week with a question about engraving, and then called and left a message when the shop opened this morning.

This is my first "big" (by my standards, not PS's, lol) custom project, and I'm not sure if this is normal from a vendor, or if/when/how I should try to get back in touch. I don't want to pester him, and know that time spent talking with customers takes time away from the work, but I'm at a bit of a loss as to what I should expect or how to proceed. TIA! :wavey:

ETA: I don't want him to rush this, as getting this right is more important to me than the timeline. I guess I just want to know the status.
 

liaerfbv

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 16, 2007
Messages
1,247
I've never worked with DK, but a few unanswered emails and phone calls would also give me anxiety. I know this doesn't help you now, but generally before giving the go ahead with a vendor one of my questions is "How often will I hear from you?" because knowing that up front is key to managing expectations. At this point, I give him tomorrow to respond to you, and if I hadn't heard from him on Wednesday, I would be leaving daily messages. Maybe other people have more chill than I do. :lol:
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Thanks liaerfbv! Lol, I have zero chill when it comes to some things! And yes, I think I'll be adding that exact question to my list of things to ask. =)
 

aljdewey

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 25, 2002
Messages
9,144
Unless there is a reason you've grown super concerned, I'd chill back a bit and relax.

DK's primary business isn't internet work, so he's just not staffed to dedicate bandwidth to feel-good communication. If you were trying to meet a timeline on having the ring ready, I could see the point of the check-in, but if it's just 'hey, when will my ring be done now?", I'd just give a little room and let him work it out.

But, I will say I tend to be much more chill than most. I tasked him with a ring project; he estimated approximate 2-3 weeks for production once I approved CADS; the ring took a few weeks longer than he projected and that was fine with me. I told him up front that I was willing to wait to have it done right, and he didn't disappoint. I never phoned or emailed when it was past the initial projection, and a couple weeks later he emailed me photos of the finished ring. I knew it was going to get done, and it wasn't a time-sensitive gift, so I just let the guy do his thing with great end results.
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Thanks for the feedback and reassurance aljdewey! It was more of a "hey, did you get the email with the engraving request?", but think I'll just sit on it for another week or two to see, since I know he's incredibly swamped. Thanks for talking me down. =)
 

E B

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2005
Messages
9,488
VirginiaZee|1457449766|4001520 said:
Thanks for the feedback and reassurance aljdewey! It was more of a "hey, did you get the email with the engraving request?", but think I'll just sit on it for another week or two to see, since I know he's incredibly swamped. Thanks for talking me down. =)
I'm working with DK right now as well and he let me know yesterday that he and his office got the flu, and are in various stages of recovery. I've worked with him in the past and because he's so busy, sometimes you have to be the squeaky wheel, but they will get back to you (faster after a phone call, I've found). But the flu is what knocked them out last week, on top of being as busy as they are-- if that helps!
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
E B said:
I'm working with DK right now as well and he let me know yesterday that he and his office got the flu, and are in various stages of recovery. I've worked with him in the past and because he's so busy, sometimes you have to be the squeaky wheel, but they will get back to you (faster after a phone call, I've found). But the flu is what knocked them out last week, on top of being as busy as they are-- if that helps!
That definitely helps, thanks for passing that along. I'm feeling calmer, lol, I guess worst case if he finishes the ring and something small needs to be tweaked (engraving, milgrain) I could always have him add that before shipment.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,367
DK doesn't not communicate often and promised dates will slip but he tries his best to make what you want and in the end, he does come through. At this point, I'd chill.
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Thanks Chrono! Feeling much more zen after the reassurances on this thread. :)
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
55,631
I too have learned that it can take many of the jewelry makers longer than expected to complete projects, sometimes having to do with sharing bench jewelers with other jewelers and not having control over the time lines. So I wouldn't worry, either, and if there is a particular deadline that someone has, I recommend having a 3 month mental timeline after CADs before that date you need the item.
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Thanks diamondseeker. The mental timeline is a useful tip, and helpful for adjusting expectations (I knew to expect timeline slip, but that can mean a few weeks to ???, and I find having a general expectation of several months to be helpful for my attempt to be zen).
 

VirginiaZee

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2013
Messages
415
Update: David got back to me, the question I emailed was not lost in cyberspace (which was my fear... silly, I know, but still). :) I'm still learning about this whole communicating with vendors thing, and the expectation management suggestions and advice on this thread have been very helpful, thanks all!
 
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