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Respect creatives and their work

2022-05-13  Staff Reporter

Respect creatives and their work
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   Wilhelmina Iimene 


Customers often complain about how “overly priced” items or services are without considering the amount of work invested to creatively hand-craft items such as paintings and crocheted, beaded or weaved products, or services such as doing nails or hair.

Thus, the backlash for their prices is totally unwarranted as hand-made products take a lot of time because no machinery is used, and require attention to detail. 

Many creatives are self-taught and may have invested time and/or money to master the art, and deserve adding a dollar or two to a similar item that could be found in retail shops.

Asked about her experiences with clients who think hand-crafted items’ prices are “baffling or exaggerated”, crocheter and owner of ‘Creations_By_Loyde’, Loide Iiyambo, said such people are unreasonable.

“They always, and I mean always, compare creatives’ prices to those of retailers, not considering that there is a difference between knitted and crocheted items. With knitting, machines are used, and it’s the opposite with crocheting. 

They also negotiate prices, and don’t consider how much we spend on raw materials. We sacrifice how much we charge for labour,” she stated. 

Some customers even get rude and personal when creatives refuse to lower their prices in order to accommodate them. 

The “Support Local” phrase is also being loosely thrown around, and many people use it to lure creatives into lowering their prices. 

Therefore, those who cannot afford an item or service can simply check next door, because “Support Local” does not mean prices should be low; it should just be fairly priced. 

Nail technician Rosalia Mulokoshi said people often tend to look down on and disregard small, upcoming businesses, and do not want to pay the required amount. However, they would pay a relatively high price for a similar product or service provided by well-established business owners.

“At most, they look at where you are operating from. In this instance, I am a small business owner, a self-taught nail technician who works from the sitting room of my house. In this practical case, because I am not working in a nail bar or salon, some people would want to pay less, but the quality of work is practically the same as that of someone in a salon. 

“Friends and family also tend to disrespect businesses and always want to be given discounts, not knowing that one puts time and effort into perfecting that skill. These factors often lead small business owners to reduce their prices just to get clients, and this is why small businesses are growing at a relatively slow pace in our communities.”

Antonius Amugongo, an electrician and visual artist, feels creativity deserves more exposure as it takes time to master the craft to be good, and so payment should be about the time it took one to master the craft and improve their talent. “People always want to pay small businesses small money, but that’s just breaking down the creativity. 

Every creative out there deserves full payment for their products, if the prices are reasonable, of course,” Amugongo observed.


2022-05-13  Staff Reporter

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