I have gone back and forth on whether or not I would write about this. But in the end, my disappointment levels are so high that I feel I just *have* to write about it because I am pretty sure Jacob is sick of hearing me rant at him every time I check the letterbox and there is nothing in there.
When I first started entering giveaways online, I was sceptical. To say the least. After months of entering, I was almost sure that they were rigged somehow. And then I won one. And I sincerely apologised to the Craft Community for not trusting them. I have won a couple of giveaways over the course of this last year, both from small blogs, and some larger ones. And I thank you again for hosting giveaways.
When I came across a giveaway in May by a designer who has such a high reputation I didn't even remember my initial hesitation. It was over the course of ten days (I think?) and it was for the release of a new line from a very popular designer. Absolutely beautiful fabrics.
I did all the right things to enter on each blog. On the second or third day I forget which now, I won. I did the right thing and stopped entering any of the other blogs also giving away the same fabrics because I had already won a bundle and was absolutely over the moon. I could already envision beautiful things made for my girls, and my nieces.
I contacted the blog owner and I provided my details as requested. After about 6 weeks of no further contact, I again emailed the blog owner near the end of June. It was about a good two weeks of no response that I tracked down the designer and used the "contact us!" function on their website to try and track down where my prize was. I of course, never heard back from this mode of contact. It did not give me any trust in the system, but I brushed that misgiving aside.
I heard nothing again until the late July where the blog owner contacted me to apologise sincerely for being so busy and that she was sure something could be sorted out! That was the last time I heard from the blog owner. Two months ago.
On the 1st of August I contacted the designer via Facebook. It was 9 days later that the designer finally got back to me. Apologising and promising to send me out a bundle asap. That was the 9th of August.
It is now the 20th of September. I have not received the original bundle of fabric, nor the supposedly sent bundle to replace the missing first bundle.
I thought about trying to contact the designer again, but I just don't have the energy. Between the blog host, and the designer I have attempted contact so many times. It has been over four months since the giveaway, if I were a paying customer, I would have demanded a refund two months ago.
I know that in some ways I don't *really* have a right to complain because after all, I was supposed to get the fabric for free, but I did everything right. I followed the rules. Is it all that bad of me to expect the blog owner and designer to uphold their end of the deal? Had I been a paying customer would I still have received such a lack of customer service?
Living in Australia, I can certainly tell you that this entire adventure has certainly put me more than a little apprehensive about ever purchasing from companies outside of Australia. Whether this has all been a case of error on behalf of the mailer, or error on behalf of the folks responsible for delivery I do not know, but at a minimum of $24 for shipping from the USA, I do not think I will be making that risk any time too soon. Which is a shame, because I cannot find a lot of the designer fabrics in Australia, without paying exorbitant rates.
To say I am disappointed would be a major understatement. I am VERY disappointed. I am also angry. This whole drama has left me borderline disillusioned with the Craft Community, and I hate that this one event has so made me hesitant to trust in the honour of the craft community.
And with that, my rant is over. I am not going to waste my time and energy getting upset over this any more. Should the fabric ever actually arrive, then fine. I will apologise for my rant. But at this stage, I think it's pretty clear that I am never going to receive the fabric.
*** In an effort to vent my frustration, but not to discredit the designer and blog involved incase my case is the exception to the norm, I have chosen to not divulge the names of the designer and blogger. ***