Special note on current orders:
We appreciate every order and do our best to fulfill orders in a timely manner. Our current back log is larger than we'd like, and we're making efforts to catch up. For those customers anxiously awaiting their orders, we thank you for your patience and understanding. Please feel free to contact us with any questions. If there is a specific event, please make sure to contact us (e-mail is best) so that we may do our utmost to complete your order on time.
Every item we sell is hand made in our workshop. This kind of craftsmanship is rare in our modern world of assembly lines and automated factories, and our production is not a fast process. It's a labor of love.
Please be aware that this is not our full time occupation. Every year Brown Cow has grown and consumed more of our time, but we still must maintain other employment as we grow toward a full-time business. As of now we operate on a semi-seasonal basis. Fulfilling orders and production of inventory happens all year round, but we go through phases of focused activity in the shop, and phases where our other occupations keep us from the leather shop for a time.
During our main festival season (late summer and fall), our focus is almost entirely on Brown Cow, while during the winter and spring we tend to be catching up on everything put off until "after fair."
We break orders down into two categories; Special orders and Custom orders. Our policies for each differ slightly.
Special orders consist of any of our standard products made to order with design & color choices we do not currently have in stock. (With our current design selection, there are over 10,000 unique possibilities just within our core products. Needless to say, we usually only have a small representation of all of the possibilities.) Minor personalizations such as initials, embossing locations and non-standard color scheme are also considered "special orders". Special orders require at least half down to place the order, and the rest upon completion. For fastest turn around full payment at time of order is encouraged.
Turn around time on special orders varies depending on the time of year. While we are in full production, special orders can usually be completed within a week or two. Once we're out of production season however, turn around time is dependent on how often we can get in the shop.
When things get specific you're probably looking at a custom order. Basically everything that is not considered a special order. All hand tooling is considered a custom order, as well as corsets made to measure and anything not covered by a standard product. Custom orders have a longer turn around time than special orders, since they tend to require a lot more time, focus and attention to complete.
Turn around time for custom orders ranges from 6-12 months depending on our overall workload. We typically have more orders than time. Occasionally we can turn things faster, if you need something for a specific date, let us know and we'll see if it's possible. Long waits are not uncommon as our demand often outpaces our supply, so talk to us as early as possible if you need something for a specific event.
Custom orders are priced by a time and material estimate. (Meaning we guess how long it will take, and how much stuff it will use and make up a price.) Once an order is confirmed with a deposit, the estimate becomes a fixed price unless the scope of the order is altered and a new price is agreed upon prior to completion.
For most custom orders, we require a 25% deposit to place and order, with payment in full due upon completion.
Pricing on custom orders is fairly flexible, typically given as a price range dependent upon the complexity of the final design.
For certain higher end items like corsets, we also offer a layaway program. A 10% deposit records the order and locks you in at the current price. However, work will not begin until at least 25% of the balance has been paid.
Down payments are considered the "I'm serious" fee and are non-refundable. (see order cancelation)
Order of completion
We complete special and custom orders according to the following priority; Paid in full orders are completed first, starting with the oldest orders and working towards the newest. Once all paid in full orders are completely we then progress from the oldest orders to the newest orders. If you want your item completed faster, payment in full will make your order a higher priority!
In the event that you might wish to cancel an order, the down payment is non-refundable. However, at our discretion, all or part of the down payment maybe be used as credit towards the purchase of other merchandise, provided that work has not begun on your order. Work on an order is considered to begin when either a) materials have been cut or otherwise irrevocably committed to the order, b) the custom artwork design process has begun or c) custom templates and/or patterning has been made.