Good things come in small packages. A couple of months ago a couple came in with a problem. After a flood, they had to replace their flooring and their cabinets were somewhat damaged. They had purchased the same local high-end cabinet line I sell in the showroom and they were not happy with "colour" of the kitchen, it just didn't feel right. Turns out that all their cabinets were installed already and the only thing missing was toekicks. We chatted for a bit about colour and how it can change, so I gave them my card, and left it at that.
About a week later, I received an email from them. After consulting a local interior designer, they wanted someone who knew both interior design and the product to come out and see if they were really making a mountain of a mole hill. I agreed, and we arranged a time.
Because all our conversations had been about colour, I prepared a box of goodies. I showed up with my Benjamin Moore colour fan deck, some wood stain samples of the cabinet line, a colour wheel, and the cabinet spec book. I walked up to one of the most contemporary stylish homes I had seen in a while, nestled between two traditional Vancouver homes. Good vaulted ceiling, skylights, modern decor, and... oh dear... cabinets the colour of baby poop and I was in for a tough one. A raised panel oak door with a butternut stain never really looked good to begin with, let alone in the beautiful home where it transports you to the early eighties. After regaining my composure, they showed me the sample door they signed off on and agreed that they made a big mistake. They showed me the OKITE Quartz in Beige Chiaro they fell in love with, then I fell in love, then they told me it was going to cost them $10,000, then I fell out of love. But they had a vested interest in the perfect space.
I gave them a solution to change the door-style (which was easy, considering they have what we sell, I don't recommend this for everyone), re-edgeband the cabinet faces, add veneer panels to some finished ends, and let them know that finding an careful millworker would be what I would do - and this all comes at a price from me, but I would call who they purchased from and let them know what I suggested. I did just that. They came into the showroom a couple more times to check out the colour of our display, which was the same wood and stain I suggested, we had a few discussions on colour again, and they offered to pay me for my time. I declined, but told them I would help guide them in any way they liked - after all, they had already purchased the same cabinets we sell, just from someone else. I was happy with that.
Yesterday, they came in to let me know they appreciated all the help and professional advise I gave them, the project was back at it and humming along, and produced a beautiful box of chocolates, that I have since devoured.
What happened here is something that I leave open for everyone (even the other, newly Vancouverites, couple that wanted a movable island for their rental suite, whom I sketched up some DIY IKEA plans for them instead.) I'm just not that interested in making a buck off your problem. I'm interested in you being happy.
I love my job.