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Designing for Friends

It always gets tricky as a designer when family members or friends expect free design work from you. If a designer gave free work to every friend they had, they would never make a dime. This being said, as professionals we need to stand by our prices and be firm about the quality services we are providing. Respecting your business will make others respect it as well.

This isn’t to say that every now and again you can’t be generous, and give the gift of your design. The difference is when the free work comes from the artist’s willingness, not a friend’s feeling of entitlement.

This week, my childhood best friend got married, and in preparation I had offered to create a wedding suite design as part of my wedding gift for her. The suite included save-the-dates, invitations, thank you cards, and all the works. What made this gift so special was the investment of time I had put into the suite.

I’ve always believed work made by hand comes from the heart and shows you made an effort. In respecting a designer’s time and skill as valuable, free gifts like these are worth much more than readily available and expected freebies.

Here is invitation design from the fall wedding suite: