Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'ritz_bitz'.

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


  • Bewares
    • Artist Bewares
    • Client Bewares
  • Caution Posts
    • Artist Cautions
    • Client Cautions
  • Archive
    • Artist Beware Archives
    • Client Beware Archives
    • Artist Caution Archives
    • Client Caution Archives
    • Positive Reviews Archives


  • For Commissioners
  • For Artists
  • Fursuit Resources


  • Records
    • Site Information
    • Beware Information


  • Site News and Information
    • Site News
    • Site Questions
    • Artists Beware Information
  • Looking for Advice
    • Advice for Artists
    • Advice for Commissioners
    • Pricing Talk
    • ToS Talks
    • Lost Contact
  • Reviews Forum
    • Artist Positive Reviews
    • Customer Positive Reviews

Find results in...

Find results that contain...

Date Created

  • Start


Last Updated

  • Start


Filter by number of...


  • Start



About Me

Found 2 results

  1. https://artists-beware.livejournal.com/851017.html This is something very difficult for me to do, but it needs to be done. This happened over the span of a couple years, so much is undocumented up until issues arose as I did not think it would be a problem. However, I feel there is more than enough after the fact. After much advice, I’ve decided to come forward and make a post here about this, mostly to warn people. I took my time writing this as I know there is no action I can take at this point and am very busy. WHO: Ritz_Bitz / Frostcat-Studio (and FA) / Ritz_Tweeting WHERE: Online, texts, emails, twitter, and at Further Confusion 2015 WHAT: One full fursuit (~$950) WHEN: Discussions starting in 2012, first purchase of materials March 4th, 2013, payment from a sponsor on November 25th, 2014, agreement of $200 of payment finalized with attendance at Further Confusion where the suit was delivered, and serious troubles starting shortly after. PROOF: Many images linked throughout explanation. EXPLAIN: This originally started as one of my best friends offering to build me a fursuit for a “friend” price. I had worn one of her suits once and got hooked on the fun it was. Over the years the details swapped around and much was discussed in person when I had lived nearby. Nothing was really set in stone for a long time and it was purely talk. March 4th, 2013 I purchased an order of fur and fleece for the project at Ritz’s request and had it shipped to her. I can't remember what happened, but she had to backburner the project. The fur sat around for almost 2 years before the project could finally be worked on, so there is a large time gap. (At some point I had also sent her DTDs of my feet for sockpaws, a pair of thick, long socks for the sockpaws, a tracing of my hand for the gloves, and extra fleece I had from a previous project based around my character.) June 2014 After attending Califur 2014 with my good friend (who I will refer to as Bob for this,) he started talking about how much he had wanted a fursuit after trying one of his friends’ suits on at the convention. He was hoping to purchase a fursuit and get it by Further Confusion that next year, and I referred him to Ritz as she was also doing my fursuit. When he found out my suit was on backburner, he offered to sponsor some of the cost for the project so it could be put into her paid queue so we could suit at Further Confusion together. I spoke to Ritz and she agreed to reserve space for Bob’s suit as well as mine and a guarantee for completion by the convention in January. I was happy to be helping her get some bills paid and to be helping Bob get a quality suit. Ritz had always told me steps she took to ensure her suits were durable and of high quality craftsmanship, so I had much trust in her work. June 27th, 2014 Bob contacted Ritz about a quote for his suit, also mentioning to her his intentions to sponsor a portion of my suit’s cost. Everything seemed pretty cut and dry at this point and Ritz waited for the payment so she could start the process of constructing the suit. Ritz confirmed that she can complete the suit by Further Confusion and states she planned to start work on my suit in August. September 20th, 2014 Bob placed a down payment to secure the slots. November 4th, 2014 I text Ritz asking when she will be needing my DTD. She answers asking it be sent the start of December. November 15th, 2014 Ritz has started constructing the head. She sends me a text asking about the eye color and shows me an early WIP of the foam sculpting, followed by more complete WIPs of the sculpt and what she planned for it. I was surprised she got the snout acceptably shaped in her style off the bat as it’s the most often misinterpreted part of my character. I praised her for this and asked one small request to the brow which she said wasn’t difficult to add, and informs me of things most people worry about in case I start to worry about similar things. November 16th, 2014 I receive an image of the progress she made as well as the change to the brow that I had requested. I was very pleased with the shape and happy it worked out so quickly with only that one minor change needed. November 20th, 2014 Ritz texts me asking that I bug Bob about making the second payment. It was weird that it was my job to ask him, but I overlooked this as this was a friendly transaction I had helped to arrange. We discussed the confusion, making jokingly grumbling about it as was custom of us when we spoke. We continued on to negotiate $200 of the suit payment to be taken out of what she would owe me for room and dealer’s table costs at Further Confusion. November 21st, 2014 Ritz texts me asking about the ears for the suit. It’s a little difficult to communicate, but I was happy with the shape and aware she only had two hands so just curious about the final curvature at the top. I jotted on the notepad what I meant and it was understood and she says it’s not hard. (This was laden with a very inappropriate joke and I have censored it out.) She also reminds me to send my DTD within the next two weeks. November 25th, 2014 Ritz contacts me asking about more details for the head. At the end I tell her she has my trust in recreating the mouth due to color limitations of fleece. November 29th, 2014 Ritz contacts me while at the store purchasing fleece for the mouth. We figure it out and even settle on the wings ahead of time to just be white due to the lack of proper shades available. I inform her I’ll be making my DTD the next day and shipping it out soon. November 30th, 2014 I ask her if she needs me to retape the dummy before sending it and inform her the lines were cut a little weird. (They were slightly wobbly in a few areas, but I had no issue matching it all back up for retaping.) December 1st, 2014 After seeing Ritz tweet pictures of the finished head, I contact her to question if it’s too late to add the fur tuft my character always has. I was a little upset that she didn’t offer a solution, but it was just a fur tuft. I wasn’t going to make a big deal about it. It still looked good, which I made sure to communicate to her. I also inform her I’m sending the DTD the next day. December 8th/ 9th, 2014 I ask if she received the DTD in the mail yet. The next day she responds that she has. December 14th, 2014 Ritz texts me during conversation about how big the tail for another suit is, using my head and DTD as comparison. My DTD appears to be partially stuffed and looks fine. December 16th, 2014 Ritz texts me informing my my DTD split at the seams during the stuffing process. She claims every seam that was cut split apart because I didn’t use long enough strips of tape. I felt bad because I knew it would be annoying to retape. She says it can be repaired (it’s just taping seams back together) and she was working on it. This is very important for an issue later, as she tells me she’s going to stuff and pattern one half and mirror the pattern. December 20th, 2014 Ritz texts me asking if I want the feet separate or attached. We’d discussed it previously, but it was so long before I understood many things were forgotten. January 1st, 2015 After seeing tweets of the completed sockpaws, I text her in private to ask her if it’s too late to add larger claws. Again, this is something we’d discussed many times in person down to the shape and how she planned construction, but I understand forgetting. She’s clearly upset at the mere question of the possibility, so I immediately try to reassure her I’m just curious and not trying to upset her. I was very concerned as a friend that my question may have been upsetting to her, but from a client’s standpoint I knew it was very wrong and I began to worry about voicing my opinion on anything being wrong with this very expensive product. January 12th, 2015 After seeing only one WIP of the wings being completed on her twitter since the sockpaws were complete, I am now texted with the completed suit only a few days before the promised deadline. She first informs me that the magnetic wings wouldn’t work and that she had to sew them into the bodysuit. Not a big deal. However, I instantly noticed the padding on the legs looked… odd and lumpy. I also became worried that the bodysuit fit her as I’m a very small person. From the backview you can also tell the ears were not evenly shaven and have bumps in the structure already. It was days before the convention and I knew bringing up the issues would cause a very tense upset, so I kept quiet and informed her I was happy with the suit and we began talking about the fun we’d have at the convention that weekend. January 15th, 2015 The first day of Further Confusion for us, as soon as we set up in the dealer’s den, we went up to the room eager to suit up and go have fun. Ritz begins to help me put the suit on for the first time and issues already arise. The bodysuit is extremely baggy on me, which was odd considering I’d gained a lot of holiday weight since I had made the DTD. When it came time to put the sockpaws on, I noticed there was a hole in the inner sock, but shrugged it off considering it was difficult to get my feet into the paws. I had provided her with DTDs of my feet, so this was also confusing. We discussed it and since she only patterned the right foot and flipped it, it being my smaller foot caused the sizing issue for my left foot. The worst problem came when I tried to put the gloves on. They couldn’t fit past my second knuckles. She immediately became upset and, again, I took the blame upon myself and said it wasn’t her fault and that I probably traced my hand wrong. She gladly accepted this and it became the new “fact” of what went wrong. When putting the head on, I noticed a part of the zipper was separated from the fur of the head. An easy fix. We quickly discussed the issues. She explained she was extremely busy with personal suit projects she wanted to get done for Denver Comic Con and didn’t have the time to do these repairs and make new gloves. I felt bad and said I could probably handle it with the small amount of sewing experience I have. This seemed to clear things up and we went out suiting. I tried not to pay attention to the flaws and just enjoy the con. January 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 2015 We only suited up once more after that, and I wore the suit as a partial a third time out with her because the padding in the thighs of the suit were unsecured and chafed me to no end when I walked. Nothing stayed in place how it was intended because the suit was so baggy. Meanwhile, tensions rose during the con due to Bob’s suit having issues. Ritz was extremely upset by this so I absolutely couldn’t bring myself to say anything negative about my suit. In fact, I rushed to defend her despite having my own issues with my suit. Sunday night when we were going to suit a final time, tensions blew up, drama happened, and we cancelled our plans and stayed in the room. The con ended and I took my entire suit home with me with plans to try to repair it myself and save Ritz the time. January 21st, 2015 After coming home and getting unpacked, I finally had time to look over the suit and prepare myself for the work I had to do. I realized there was far more than I could handle and I was not experienced enough to fix most of it. A list of the issues in full is provided after my next piece of information. February 14th, 2015 The issues in my fursuit worried me. I wasn’t sure what was normal and what wasn’t. I attended the local furmeet this day and brought the head and paws (having issues easier to see in person) and asked some friends with more experience on the issues as well as asking advice on how to handle this delicate situation between my friend and myself. I briefly wore these to demonstrate some of the issues and interact with two young children. I got the advice I needed and confirmation that the flaws in my suit were not acceptable and not my responsibility to fix as she was paid to produce a suit in working condition that I could wear and enjoy. Many told me how clear it was that she rushed it and took shortcuts, which is no surprise given the circumstances. I needed to approach her on the issue and hope for the best. I couldn’t keep pretending it was okay, and I started preparing myself to for this rather difficult step. The Problems - The excess amount of fabric on the bodysuit is around 10-14 inches on the midsection. This can only mean when she patterned the half of the DTD and flipped it, she overshot the middle point. Even overshooting this by a few inches can cause excess (2-4x the length of the overshoot) and wouldn’t have been an issue had she taken the time to fully retape the DTD. The thighs have an excess as well, though not as bad. - I discovered the zipper on the head was glued on instead of sewn. This is why part of it was already separated when I received it. - The shaving on the head was very choppy. I had actually taken time to hand trim the face to smooth it out, but there was little I could do for the ears. - The ears were glued directly to the balaclava with no foam to anchor them or keep them stable. This causes them to flop around pretty badly. - Instead of being sewn to the rest of the fur of the head, the ears were poorly glued on. There are small open gaps at the side of each ear on both sides, as well as at the front of the ears near the fleece. - There are crinkles in the fleece on the ears where it was glued to the inside material. - The ears are anchored off-center. - The balaclava was spottily glued to the inside of the head and was already pulling off bits of foam. It is glued in such a way that it overlaps a portion of the buckram from the inside, unnecessarily limiting the vision further. - The gloves do not fit past the second knuckle of my hand. They’re also not hemmed at the edges so the fleece was left raw cut. - On top of the sizing issues, the sockpaws had a hole in the inner sock when I received them from being cut sloppily. - The sockpaws weren’t hemmed. In fact, the fleece was glued to the sock at the top. It began to fall apart with the small amount of wear they saw at the con. - The magnets she’d promised me and stated she could not get to work were left in the wings and sealed over with giant globs of glue. You can still see them and the gluey mess is left uncovered to get at the wearer’s back. - The wings were glued together and you can see the wire in some spots by peeking into the open spaces in the glue seams. (Originally we were planning on realistic wings with wiring, feathers, and vinyl. I told her “Just do simple plush wings like Telephone’s since it’s easier” later on. While the wings she made are cute and a creative middle-point, they’re going to fall apart because glue doesn’t last very long.) - The elastic loops on the tail were not sewn very securely for such a large, heavy tail and had begun to fall apart at the convention along with a small hole. February 15th, 2015 I have a short, rather comical discussion with another previous client of Ritz’s who also discloses that many parts of their suit are glued together. I feel this is necessary to disclose to help support my discontent with the quality of my suit prior to the next events as I am accused of "retaliation" later on. March 2nd, 2015 Unfortunately, I’d been very busy with life, so I had not yet been able to approach Ritz before this point. I don’t like to bring drama into this discussion of business, but this severely complicated the smooth resolution of things. We had not been speaking much as Ritz had blamed me for the drama at the convention and I was giving her breathing space. On this day, she reacted negatively to a tweet I had made on Twitter (she brings it up later) and the resulting misunderstanding caused her to remove me on social media. I contacted her concerned about her and trying to resolve the issue, only to be ignored. (I can provide screenshots, but would rather not as this is just drama.) In a panic, I discussed parting out the suit as a last resort as I was certain I would now not be given the repairs I deserved. It did not help when I saw photos proving similar quality work on other suits, leaving me more upset at what had been given to me. After speaking to many people and getting advice on this new situation, I removed the comments out of courtesy (despite never once mentioning her specifically) and went forward with their suggestions to attempt getting a rightful refurbish. March 6th, 2015 At the advice of many, I contacted Ritz with my intentions. I tweeted at her asking for an email to discuss repairs with her, being clear it shouldn’t be my responsibility. She replied with the preferred email. At that point I began to write a thorough email to her. This took me about a week to get finished up. March 13th, 2015 I finally sent my email. I noted not only the issues with her craftsmanship, but also with the customer service she gave me that led to increasing problems in the work that had upset me and led me to be quiet for so long. I leave the option open to negotiate a refurbish or simply work out a refund as it seems like it would be easier with her busy schedule that caused the burden of refurbishing to be placed on me in the first place. March 14th, 2015 I woke up to a rather hostile email back from Ritz. She immediately accused me of retaliation, being unreasonable, and picky. Our correspondence is plain to see and everyone I’ve asked said I was very kind. She accuses me of getting a suit “for free” even though she received a $600 payment from Bob, a $200 traded payment from me, as well as my purchasing $160 of materials. She then blames me for all the problems she possibly can, while ignoring half the issues that she can’t try to blame me for. She blamed the bagginess on my DTD, which she now attacks me for. I spoke to numerous suitmakers and they said 10-14 inches is definitely not due to retaping seams. (Also note the 2 day gap between the lightly stuffed DTD image and her telling me it split apart as vs. her story now.) The fact she still continued and even brought up personal drama with other clients as well as further wild accusations that, even if true, have nothing to do with the quality of my suit, is baffling. I’m not sure if she was trying to guilt trip me or try to scare me out of pressing the issue to resolution, but it was absolutely uncalled for. She even accuses me of being the reason someone was bringing up issues on another suit she worked on. The fact she finished it up with blatantly insulting me was the icing on the cake. I was also a little disturbed that, despite our cessation of contact on social media, she had still been checking my accounts. I immediately wrote her a response, on my phone, to address this unbelievable reply she had sent me. Admittedly blunt, but necessary, and deciding at this point I cannot handle a refurbishing process due to her hostility and request a refund. As she showed aggression about Bob having paid in a portion, I made it clear I could contact him to work things out how she’d like. March 17th, 2015 As I’ve yet to receive a response, I sent Ritz an email to remind her and request she handle the situation civilly. I make note that Bob is aware of the situation and we all just want to resolve this. March 29th, 2015 I had to duck out to handle life for a bit and figured giving her time to cool off was good. Sadly, I saw signal boosts that she was selling her leftover furs. I saw some of the very same fur used on my suit and contacted her immediately. It seemed like the 6 yards she told me to purchase was a lot and it was likely some of it was mine. At this point I was notably frazzled by this ordeal. She surprisingly responded, again accusing me of things I am not guilty of and bringing other clients and drama into dealings about a fursuit she did not make properly. She seems to even agree with the fact that the quality is bad and that I should be fine that I only spent $200 on it. Her logic in thinking because I only paid $200 along with $160 in materials means she doesn’t have to give anything back, despite that she took the $600 from Bob, and that is what he would get back, not me, in a refund. She claims it was wrong to take Bob’s money, yet she seems fine keeping it despite not doing her job properly for it. All she has done is avoided owning up and fixing mistakes she made on an expensive product while hiding behind excuses that drama somehow nullifies her responsibility in business. I made a final response to her as well, and that was where it ended between us. Currently: I have been refused repairs or a refund on a suit that was paid for and delivered in poor quality. It’s very clear Ritz has done a good job to avoid everything wrong with the suit she made for me and justify not fixing the issue and attacking me. She blames me for all that she can and resorts to bringing up drama instead of addressing why half my suit is glued together. I feel she has been trying to take advantage of the fact Bob sponsored part of the suit cost and her sudden grudge against me to avoid dealing with resolving the matter. She took a large sum of money for a product of a certain quality and did not deliver, and I’m honestly upset with how she’s treated me in this ordeal. The suit needs entirely new hands and feet, major tailoring of the bodysuit that includes redoing the legs entirely, redoing the tail's backing and elastic loops, completely redoing the ears and refurring the head with a new balaclava. Most suitmakers have told me it's not "refurbishing" so much as making an entirely new suit with some scraps. I basically don't know what to do aside from hope nobody else runs into the same troubles as I have with this suitmaker, but any advice would be welcome if anything can possibly be done at this point. June 16, 2015 Update I just took the head out of the storage box for the first time since photographing everything months ago. I've been getting advice on how to salvage as much as I can from the head to go towards making a new one, so I was needing to take a closer look at some things. A small clatter and objects falling out confused me, until I realized that the teeth have started to fall out with even this small amount of age and absolutely no use. The teeth are sculpey, I believe, and left unfinished. Some bases of the silver molars were unpainted, the rest of the teeth are just straight sculpey or whatever they are made of, no paint, and are all starting to separate from the beds of hot glue. This just adds to the poor quality product I was given and the work I am left to cover out of my pocket to fix. I honestly don't have anymore words to describe how I feel right now. February 2016 Update This disheartens me to have to even add to so long after the fact of this all happening, but I would like to update this to add a further warning to Ritz's poor business behavior if you happen to get on her bad side as I have with this ordeal. I placed an advertisement up on Furaffinity, in which I used a commission she had gotten from me as it was in my top 10 favorited pieces in my gallery and a great example. My Terms of Service states that I am allowed to use the work I create for people for portfolio and other purposes, and thus I had the legal right to use the image in an advertisement as it's a form of portfolio. I assumed this would not be an issue as I have personally gotten over the drama and moved on past this all quite a while ago, and had assumed she had done the same. She, however, saw this as an opportunity to attack me by approaching the advertisement organizer stating that her character was in my advertisement without her permission, essentially wanting it removed. This was orchestrated with a friend of hers whom also had commission work in my advertisement, also demanding the removal of their commission despite them having both agreed to and being bound by my Terms of Service. This alone was a nuisance, but in having to handle the issue, I saw that she had been publicly trash talking me, clearly stating her intention to try to cause a problem for me for the sake of causing a problem. At this point she obviously holds a grudge against me and I am being bullied for having spoken out about her practices, showing also that she has absolutely no respect to my Terms of Service that was agreed to. I am attempting to resolve the issue with the advertising organizer, but will be forced to avoid exercising my legal rights to display the artwork I created involving her characters in the future all because I want to avoid her malicious acts to attempt revenge for speaking up. August 19, 2016 Update After being urged by friends and seeking advice from the community on if I should add further updates, I'm sadly here again. While I'm relatively wary to share due to more fear of retaliation, I don't believe this will ever stop regardless of anything I do. I am urged to warn people the extent of the poor behavior that I have been subjected to for over a year since posting. Occasionally third parties will inform me of things that have been said and I honestly ignore 90% of things, but I had the displeasure seeing one instance myself. I have been ruthlessly slandered since the posting, and at this point been brought aware of possible threats of either legal action against me or potential harm to my person. (If it escalates any further I will contact law enforcement, but at current there is not enough to hold up considering the distance involved.) I have had absolutely ZERO contact with Ritz since the last email shown in the original posting here. Even during her attack on my advertisement, I did not say a word to her, only spoke to the advertising department at FA. I am going to point out ahead of time, it is EXTREMELY easy to figure out who is being spoken about (me) in all of these instances even if names aren't attached cause a simple google search nets you all the info you need. I already know I'm mentioned frequently by name otherwise anyhow. Onto the point, what I saw for myself... Was on Wednesday, June 22 in a Facebook group for Fursuiters and Fursuit Makers. A notification popped up onto my phone for a sale posting that was receiving many comments. I'm going to be 100% honest I was wildly curious as I'd heard she quit suitmaking (I'm only human), and I saw this exchange brewing that had apparently been what sparked it into popularity. I avoided the desire to jump in and say something cause NOPE I have zero desire to speak to her. I just screencapped away cause I couldn't believe what I was reading and figured it'd be taken down, which it was. Color guide for censoring (cause identifying photos/names): Black = Not involved or moderator names Ritz commented to alert Blue = Ritz Red = Some fursuiter who spoke up Yellow = Ritz's IRL friend https://www.dropbox.com/s/7nixak1x72bdqmb/Group1.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/j3j2m8mw22mswoo/2.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/oeibrn7q6amudni/3.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/b189gvqz44ge3r5/4.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/y3527bkjzuev7qx/5.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/voe431whjd9eul3/6.jpg?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/feofjf0gk1tkdqy/7.jpg?dl=0 I don't even need to make commentary on how messed up this was. You all can think for yourselves. I avoided updating with it at the time despite people telling me to. I didn't want to deal with it. I didn't think it was that bad. Now here's what broke me on trying to ignore things. I was shown these earlier this week. Despite being from May, it opened my eyes to how serious things really were this whole time as I attempted to ignore it all. This is only HALF of a conversation someone had with Ritz's locked twitter, but it's very clear what's going on. I was shown this for obvious reasons. This was shortly before BLFC, which we both happened to be attending (I avoided her at all costs, and was apparently wise to do so.) Censoring: Blue = Ritz's locked twitter handle, Purple = Ritz's friend (Remember to read bottom to top in each for chronological order cause it's twitter.) https://www.dropbox.com/s/v36ao3uyd8d10r4/21.png?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/accjt9cl35ieovk/22.png?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/yf7mwvzbbwgyhc1/23.png?dl=0 https://www.dropbox.com/s/n8hq2cioflujxoz/24.png?dl=0 Let me point this out there. Whatever is being said on the other side of this conversation, her friend thinks I should be scared of her. This is NOT okay, and relatively alarming considering things I know about her that are not for me to share publicly. The suggestion of a restraining order despite that I have not had ANY contact with her whatsoever even despite her attempted harassment, is outlandish. Furthermore, the clear discussion of potential legal action because I caused her loss of income due to this beware posting is even more unsettling. This is bonkers. I don't even care about the disgusting and immature names they casually call me when this other stuff is going on. People are right, they need to know what she's doing because this is, and has been, crazy. Exercise caution when doing business with her, because you never know when you'll end up like me.
  2. https://artists-beware.livejournal.com/829508.html It's really disheartening to have to come forward with this report, but after having patience and trying to negotiate with the artist, I have begun to feel like I had no choice on this matter, especially after many people have instructed me to come forward. I apologize for this post being very long; I wanted to make sure I included all the details I possibly could. Who/Where: Fursuit Maker: Frostcat-Studio / Ritz_Bitz / Ritz_Tweeting When I originally considered looking into getting my first fursuit, I had only heard of this maker through the recommendation of a mutual friend. From looking at their gallery, they seemed to have very nice work and I was given the impression that they could provide me with similar work. What: One Partial Fursuit ($1200) I had originally contacted Ritz for a fursuit in June of 2014 and on June 27th we agreed to a price of $1200 to make my partial, which included a large tail and also a set of wings. Here you can see Ritz had offered to add a magnetic feature to the wings so they could be worn under a shirt with a harness and I was charged and extra $170 for this addition. ->The email can be viewed here <- (Our conversation is very casual as we had been united through a mutual friend) On September 20th 2014, I confirmed my slot and placed my 50% down payment. -> Link for Proof <- (Ritz real name has been blanked) Then, on November 25th 2014 I paid my remaining $600. (The screen shot shows a total of an additional $1200 as I also paid off the remaining $600 on the mutual friend's balance to help them out. That amount is not related to my entry) -> Link for final Payment Proof <- Explain: At first, Ritz kept very good communication when working on my fursuit and seemed interested in making it "just right". She replied to my inquires often and kept reliable contact with me, even sending me work in progress images from time to time. While I would get pictures, I never really was sure what I was looking at in terms of what she had been doing; I was never given any explanation and was issued vague descriptions, which is possibly my fault for not speaking up on but I had never commissioned a suit before and felt I should place my trust in the maker to do their job. The first red flag that came to me was when she would inquire about my second payment and instead of contacting me directly, she would ask the mutual friend to remind me on her behalf. This really struck me as odd given the mutual friend was not working for Ritz and my contact information was established prior. I ended up ignoring my gut on this issue given the mutual friend was close to both of us and since this was a friendly transaction, I considered it to just be another casual aspect of the entire affair. Ritz proposed the completion date (By Further Confusion 2015) and said that having it complete by this time would be no issue, so I planned to attend this convention so I could have a good time fursuiting for the first time. Overall, the anticipation building for this costume was immense as I would be flying in from Florida to attend the convention in California just to have a chance to wear it for the first time. On January 4th (approximately 10 days before the convention), I was shown images of my completed fursuit via Twitter and Skype. The images were not close ups or anything, so from first appearances I was excited. While it wasn't the quality I had expected, I was still excited to have a costume regardless. I should take responsibility for my qualms with the quality as when browsing her gallery I had not noticed the suits that stood out to me were all built on headbases made by other fursuit makers when mine would be built from scratch; That being said my expectations for what I would receive were not completely accurate and it was my fault for not researching further. Regardless, I told her I was happy with it visually and was eager to wear a fursuit for the first time. Overtime, I ended up coming into a disagreement with the mutual friend who had connected Ritz and I for the commission and we began to grow apart. I didn't think it would effect my commission with Ritz in anyway, but later on I would find it was quite the opposite. (This is only important to note as it will become relevant later on.) Originally, the suit was going to be shipped to the mutual friend and delivered to me at the convention however due to (what I can only assume to be) rising tension, the mutual friend opted not to deliver the costume to me. Given I was flying in from across the country, I asked a friend from Southern California to have it shipped to them instead since they would be driving to the convention. The friends who ended up having the fursuit shipped to them did not open the box in any way until they found me at the convention and I opened it myself. January 15th When I made it to the convention, I met up with my friends from Southern California (I was also rooming with them) and they had my fursuit box in the hotel room waiting for me. At first glace, I was already very upset. The box was very poorly packaged and looked very ragged. I would have thought it could have been mangled by the postal service but it seemed the degrading box was actually taped up in areas where it was falling apart and that tape was laid beneath the original packing where the shipping information was. It was very clear that Ritz reused a battered and trashed box to ship my $1200 product and my concern began to grow before I had even seen the costume. Upon opening the box, the first thing that was staring at me was a foot paw that was falling apart. The box had just been opened and the suit was already damaged in quite visible ways. Thankfully, I had a room full of witnesses that helped me gather pictures of the unboxing. Here is a visual collection of the damages that we discovered. -> The footpaws were separating from the shoes (That I had to purchase myself and ship to her) before they were ever worn. -> The bottom Jaw and horns were crooked and the head was barely foamed so it would lose it's shape when not worn. -> The seam in the fur on the direct center of the muzzle was popped despite never having been worn yet. -> The balaclava was not attached with only a few tiny dabs of hot glue and separated from the foam and also has various holes in it. -> In fact, the Balaclava had MANY holes in it. -> The fur on the hand paws was poorly shaved and some of the claws were upside down. -> The shave job was uneven and jagged. -> And in some places, the fur was shaved all the way down to the backing. Now, as you can imagine, I was not very pleased to open the box and discover the suit was in such a mess after never being worn. Some of the mistakes I saw were very common from beginner suit makers however I was given the impression that Ritz was NOT a new maker and had enough experience to warrant the $1200 price tag (which could buy a partial from many makers who would not have made these mistakes). On top of all these issues, I discovered that the set of wings I had ordered for this costume did not feature any magnetic attachments at all. Instead, the wings were sewn directly into a harness made from elastic straps, making it impossible to wear them without having the harness worn on top of my clothes. This was also very upsetting given Ritz had offered to make this feature for me and charged me an additional $170 for it, yet never once mentioned to me during the construction process that they would no longer be doing the magnet idea. I immediately decided to contact Ritz as she was at the convention and perhaps she could do enough quick fixes so I could at least wear my fursuit; I did fly in from across the country just to wear it around afterall. I didn't mind waiting on fixing the other issues, but I at least wanted some help fixing the shoes. I decided to contact our mutual friend to get in touch with Ritz because I had no other way to reach her at the time. We met up and I explained what the problems were and she agreed to get the feet fixed. We went to Ritz's hotel room and she did a quick hot glue job on the paws with me standing there. It was not very thorough but it seemed like it was enough to keep them together for the time being. I also had the chance to ask about the missing magnets and she explained that there were no magnets strong enough to hold the wings in place (which isn't true since you can order some that can hold up to 75lbs!) so she opted to sew them to the harness without informing me to meet the tight deadline. After Ritz "fixed" the feet, I went back to my hotel room and decided to wear my suit as it was to try and enjoy the convention. The next morning, I went to participate in the fursuit parade and that was when the fur on my foot paws began to separate again; this time on both feet. Additionally, the buckram connected to the plastic to make the eyes began to separate and peel from the plastic. This was also when I noticed that the plastic has been hastily cut and there were strands of of debris going into the space where my actual eyes were. After the parade, I found Ritz again to show her what was happening with my brand new suit and she seemed very disinterested in my issues. When I brought attention to the issue with the eye popping out, both Ritz and the mutual friend (whom was with her the entire con) began to give me sass and snark about not being "too rough" with the costume then walked off without making any attempt to help me with the situation. I was pretty appalled at this reaction given I paid so much money for a costume to wear and was basically being told not to wear it if I didn't want it to fall apart. I had been just wearing the suit like any normal person would, I wasn't jabbing the eyes in with my finger or anything for goodness sake. It was at this point the mutual friend decided to get involved and began sending me text messages that said I was being rude and "mean" to Ritz for contacting her about these issues and the issues in question were not her fault. Why was the suit maker's friend getting involved and handling this situation? This had nothing to do with them so why were they acting as a messenger for Ritz? At this point, I was given the very strong impression that Ritz no longer wanted to provide me with any help for the costume, so in order to make it wearable I asked for the help of my friends (I was rooming with) to help me do minor repairs. I was forced to go out and buy a glue gun and ask a friend to cut time from her convention experience to keep the suit intact. During the time we spent fixing it, we also began to see even more issues with the craftsmanship. -> The zipper on the back of the head was glued to the fur instead of sewn and began to separate. -> The horns were discovered to have no foam to anchor them, explaining why they were crooked. I think the majority of my convention time was spent with a friend trying to repair this costume. We were absolutely sure not to modify anything, just attempt to repair the poor craftsmanship. After a certain point, my friend explained to me that we should stop repairing it all together because the state it was in just couldn't be saved at a convention. I attempted to contact Ritz once more via twitter DMs to try and show her the state of the suit before the end of the convention but she unfortunately decided to start ignoring me. I was polite and kind because I wasn't mad as much desperate to fix these issues. It was such a frustrating experience because I just wanted some resolution for this costume that I spent a large sum of money on and the person who sold it to me made me feel like they had zero concern for the situation now that the money was already in their hands. To make things worse, a few hours later Ritz began tweeting about me to try and detract from my issues, implying that I was picking on them because I had a disagreement with the mutual friend. This was just the end to my willingness to work with this fursuit maker anymore and I ended up sitting in tears while friends comforted me. One of my friends began discussing things with Ritz on twitter because it very strongly felt that she would not be dealing with me beyond this point and Ritz began stating that the problems with the costume were not actually there nor her fault and began to explain that the situation had very much been influenced by my falling out with the mutual friend. My friend then decided to take the conversation with her in private and they discussed the situation because Ritz still would not talk directly to me. During the private conversation with my friend, Ritz admitted to rushing my fursuit and stated that she could not afford to refund the costume but would work out a plan after the convention to make things right. She also stated that it was "shitty" or me to not want repairs at this point and called it unreasonable. I may be unreasonable for not wanting repairs, but I don't trust this individual with my money anyone given these problems would not exist if the care needed was put in to begin with not to mention the constant avoidance with my problems. I did not feel this person wanted to fix things correctly. After Ritz had conversation with my friend, it was decided that after the convention she would absolutely talk to me about the problems with the costume and find a resolution. (I can provide screen shots of this entire conversation if necessary, however I opted to leave them out initially as so my friend would not be dragged into the issue. I firmly believe this should have stayed between Ritz and myself and the constant involvement from third parties has really caused more drama than needed.) January 20th (2015) Two days after the convention, Ritz contacts me on Skype and begins trying to work out a situation from the suit. She begins by offering me two options; One is to send the suit back for repairs or I can send the suit to be stripped and turned into a different character that she can sell. She tells me that I can not be refunded 30% of the fursuit cost as the cost of the materials can not be returned. Despite finding that option to be very unfair (given I would be returning the suit to her so she could recoup her losses and the reason for refund was not a cancellation but rather the product was broken and the fault was hers), I agreed and stated that after all that had happened and the personal involvement of her friend causing tension I did not want it refurbished; I just wanted a refund. She also explains to me that she -can not refund me at all- until I return the suit and she resells it, thus leaving my money weighing on the uncertainty of weather or not the suit sells and if it does, would it sell for the $800 she says I am owed? She insists she will not refund money until I send the suit back, however that was understandable and we agreed. She also mentions at the same time that she will send $200 refund in "good faith" (that I have never since seen). I am kind and understanding with her and even apologetic for the situation that unfolded despite being at no fault myself. I wanted to make things right and I felt bad that she had spent the last few days tweeting about never wanting to make suits again. I felt guilty for the distress I put her through so I even said I would think about letting her repair the suit after she pushed that option on me constantly (despite saying I did not want it). She additionally admits to her friend's presence having effected her business with me and even the way she treated me as a customer, which sent even more red flags to me, but she genuinely seemed like she wanted to make things right so I did my best to return it. Her main concern throughout the entire conversation was her name and reputation, which seemed very off-putting given I felt her main concern should have been to fix the situation with my costume. -> Conversation can be found here <- January 30th (2015) About ten days after our conversation, I gave Ritz my final decision. I took note to how stressed she was over the decision and gave her time to come down from the ordeal. I politely explained to her that I did not feel comfortable sending her the suit and waiting for her to resell it before I would receive any money. I stated that I would gladly return the suit after I was refunded and left it at that. -> Link to Conversation <- The Next day, Ritz replies to me stating that she can not refund me for the amount I am owed until I return the suit in parts for her to resell and asks for a week to figure something out. She explains that she will use her tax refund to pay me the money I am owed and I reassure her that I can wait for a refund as long as it needs to be. My main concern is still that I do not want to return the goods until I am compensated for them. This is when her contact slows to a grinding halt. She openly begins to dodge my communication and puts me on the back burner and does not contact me in any way unless I put an effort into contacting her. February 12th I end up contacting her as it has been nearly two weeks since her last contact with me. Again, I am civil and I calmly ask what the game plan is for the situation. On February 14th I get a reply in which she states that her tax refund was small and she would not be able to refund me from that money. She also goes back on her word in stating that she would refund me and takes an aggressive tone, calling our agreed upon solution to be "unfair" and says that my failure to trust her is preventing me from getting my money back. Now, I'm going to throw some personal opinion in here but...how am I being unfair? She agreed to refund me and suddenly is changing her tune and even going as far as to insinuate that this situation is my fault for "not trusting her". The problem is, I already trusted her with $1200 to deliver a product to me in functioning order. She not only failed to do that, but she also insulted me, ignored me and went as far as to try and claim her faulty craftsmanship (which she admitted to) was -my- fault. Yes, I do not trust her with giving me my money back and I will not relinquish the costume until I am given a refund. I am not asking for both the suit and a refund, I am asking to be compensated -before- I give up the costume. The artist's financial issues are not my concern, what is my concern is the money that she had taken from me and will not return. -> This reply can be viewed here <- She has dodged contact with me and has put me in a situation where I am not sure if I am going to have this situation resolved. On February 17th, I contacted her asking for her to talk to me when I was online as I didn't enjoy playing message tag when the subject was so important. I tried once more on the 18th to reach out and beg for conversation on the topic and reaffirmed my stance about her taking back the product to resell. I even went as far as to offer my phone number to try and resolve the issue but she had left me in the dark, all while spending time on twitter and talking to other people on skype. I am fully aware I am being ignored and it's gotten to the point where I am getting ready to file a charge back on paypal if this doesn't get resolved soon. -> Proof of contact attempts <- (screen shots were taken on 2/18/2015) 2/21 - Ritz contacted me in response to my final message in which I explained that I felt that I didn't believe it was fair to charge me for materials when I would be returning the suit for her to recoup that loss and because the issue with the costume was not due to cancellation or error on my end. I admit that I did change my mind in terms of the refund I was willing to accept though the advice of many friends and other artists swayed my mind. I did agree that taking a partial refund for having zero product on an issue that was no fault of my own felt very wrong, but I may be out of line for having brought that up and changing my stance I take responsibility for that. She responded aggressively, again cursing at me and using profanity. I was given a "final option" in which I was told I will wait until she gets her tax refund after I return the broken merchandise she had given me before I will receive any financial compensation. I don't feel that this is ever a way an artist or suit maker should ever talk to or treat a client, but maybe I am bitter and misinterpreted her reply as more rude than it actually was. I politely asked her to calm down because her abrasive reply felt very flustered and asked her to give me a phone call so we can figure things out. She explains that she can't handle phone calls due to anxiety so despite it being a difficult work around for me (my work generally keeps me very busy) I understand her position and tell her I can easily wait for her to finish helping a friend move out. She asks me if I would "actually want to resolve this civilly" which struck me as rude given I don't feel I have been anything but? - > Conversation <- As of now, it is 2/27/15 and we have not resolved the issue at all. I feel like I am constantly being fed excuses, ignored and just treated very poorly in general and as a customer that paid $1200 for a costume that is barely wearable, I feel like this shouldn't be the case? I just feel like I'm stuck in a run around and I can't help but think I'm not doing the wrong thing? This is the first time I've ever commissioned a fursuit so perhaps my inexperience is what keeps this situation from being resolved? I'd be happy to take fault if I knew what I was doing wrong! I'm hoping that in posting this entry, I can warn people about this maker's shady business practices, lack of professionalism and lack of concern for their customers. I'm also hoping this may be the final nudge needed to get Ritz to acknowledge me and resolve the situation before I file for a charge back on Paypal. $1200 is quite a sum of money to be over drafted and I would absolutely prefer not to financially break this artist. I just want resolution, I want her to give me a game plan and show concern for the situation and give me a refund for the broken product she gave me. EDIT: 3/4/2015 On the day this entry had been posted, Ritz returned from attending an Anime convention and contacted me. She has posted the caps herself below, however just to be sure, here is the gist of what was said: -> Conversation <- While yes, she did offer to refund me $800, she also went on to bring up unexpected bills she mentioned on twitter and debts which made me feel extremely guilty in accepting any money from her when her personal life needed the money so much more. As I have said countless times, I am not out to be a bully in any way; I just want a refund for the broken costume I was given. Later in the day while I was at work, Ritz confronts me on skype with this: I wasn't even aware the entry had been posted at that point as I was on patrol at work (I am a police officer) and she begins getting aggressive on me, stating that she thought this was resolved and saying she was insulted. For one thing, this post was made days prior when I had not yet received any contact, secondly I would never consider this issue to be revolved until the money is in my hands and the fursuit was in hers. At this point, she offers me a NDA Contract because she no longer "trusts" me for having made this entry. Ritz is well aware that I have now requested a full $1200 for my refund because as others have mentioned here, I should not take a material cost loss when the issues with the transaction were not my own. The contract is incredibly damaging for me in which is states that I am unable to speak of the event in public or to third parties and states that Ritz may deduct from my refund if she is unable to sell the broken suit she crafted. I have screen capped the contract issued to me (I had to censor our names) and would like AB's input. -> The NDA/Contract I was offered <- (Ritz is the first party where as I am the second) I do not feel comfortable having to sign a contract to have the money I am owed returned to me; I feel like this is a form of blackmail in order to try and silence me if I want the money I am owed back, furthermore the amount offered is not what I am requesting. I want a full refund and that is what I am standing firm on, especially if Ritz is going to refurbish and sell the broken merchandise I was sold. I do not feel fit signing a binding legal agreement that states I am unable to make "any other online postings about the other party" I am additionally saddened by Ritz response here in the community claiming I have falsified any documentation in this entry and went as far as to accuse me of Libel and Slander within the proposed contract. I have not fabricated any of the content within this journal nor would I have had to should I received a functioning product to begin with. I also asked a few friends to review the contract that was presented to me, to which Ritz stated I should never do unless I approach a lawyer. I am in disbelief I was scolded for asking for input before signing a binding legal contract and that made me feel like Ritz knowingly attempted to shaft me. Additionally, while discussing the public image Ritz has gained from this entryI was suddenly confronted with Ritz's fiance (who could not bother to spell my name correctly). I expressed to him that I have no interest in talking to him about the transaction and want Ritz to be present. She returns and demands I resolve this tonight -> Conversation <- At this phase, I am done playing games with Ritz. I am tired of being treated like a bully or a bad guy when I have done all I can to be agreeable and helpful with this situation. My job requires a very taxing amount of my time and I can't be bothered to jump through hoops anymore. I have issues Ritz a final statement and that is where I am leaving it. I will not be accepting any amount under the original $1200 I have paid and if a resolution is not reached within the week, I will be filing a charge back OR if that fails I will be taking legal action. Ritz has proven to me that her reputation takes precedence above her clients and that is why I can not be bothered to be involved in her personal financial matters or give leniency anymore. -> My final statement to her about the matter <- At this point, this issue is not resolved despite Ritz claiming it to be so on social media. Edit 2: Ritz has now hidden her twitter from public view due to her initiating issues with people discussing this entry and claiming she was harassed. I do not support anyone causing her trouble on social media and I have not encouraged any of that behavior. Edit 3: Approximately one hour after I had amended this entry with the NDA they proposed to me, Ritz contacted me again and negotiated a refund. Her reply was as unprofessional as the rest and was of course not without an attempted guilt trip. She assumed my commentary about conventions and ski trips were about money when in reality it was about her lack of contact with me (in the cases where I was told she was too busy to negotiate with me). After accusing me of harassment and reminding me about her tax refund, I was asked to give her my paypal and complied. Despite constantly being told that she could not afford to refund me in full, I was suddenly sent the full amount of $1200. This left me a bit unsettled, however I wasn't going to ask any more when I got what I had requested. I have informed her that I would alter the entry and mark the situation as resolved. I will also be shipping the fursuit back to her this week and will edit the entry one last time to prove I have made good on my end of the bargain. I want to thank the Artist's Beware community for it's insight and help on dealing with this situation. This community is a valuable resource and I am glad to have been able to use it. As far as this entry goes, while it is now resolved I would still consider it a more than valid beware. I think the entry speaks for itself and down to the very end this maker could not handle a professional attitude. I also want to note that this suit will be refurbished and relisted for sale, so buyer beware in the future. I am very disappointed that things between this maker and I had to come to this. I was very polite and willing to work with them to accommodate their own situations if they would help me with mine and that refusal just made it impossible. Ultimately, it was not the desire to right a wrong that got me my refund, it was the desire to salvage their reputation that finally made a nearly two month long ordeal come to a close. If the maker had just shown the same concern for me as a client as they did for their reputation, this post wouldn't have had to be made. EDIT: 3/6/2015: The fursuit has been shipped to Ritz. I can provide a tracking number to the entry if needed and also visual documentation was taken to provide proof the suit was shipped in the most protective way possible, including the individual parts being bagged to prevent weather damage to eliminate any claims proper care was not taken.
  • Create New...