PORTLAND, Ore. — Amber Petit thought she found the perfect Christmas gift for her in-laws, a hand-drawn family portrait including her late father-in-law holding the newborn grand-daughter he never got to meet.
Instead, she said she's out more $200 and is not the only upset customer.
Petit found Bobby's Drawings on Facebook and paid them to draw her fiance's family.
"I thought, this would be fantastic to have their dad, who can't be with us physically, drawn into a family photo. In the photo, I was going to have their dad, holding her, standing next to all of us," said Petit while holding her 4-month-old daughter Aubrey.
She paid more than $200 for two portraits at the end of November and was supposed to receive the items in 10 to 14 days.
Petit received one proof she was unhappy with, asked for a redraw and hasn't heard back from the company in weeks.
"The company is not responding to emails, messages, nothing," said Petit.
While some customers posted positive messages about their portraits on the Bobby's Drawings facebook page, others were unhappy with the quality of the sketches.
One woman said she received a picture of the wrong family after waiting for weeks and at least one dozen other customers said they paid the company and never received their portraits.
The Better Business Bureau has given the company an F rating and while the company appears to be based in Seattle when you click on the address, it takes you to the Space Needle.
"I can't believe there are people out there that would take advantage of grieving families. It's heartbreaking," said Petit.
Petit is filing a dispute to try and get her money back.
On Dec. 26 the company issued the following statement:
"We provide a custom portrait drawing service from our customers’ photos. We give all time-frames for the completion of our commissions in good faith, but sometimes delays are unavoidable due to the nature of the work. This is a complex business to run because we can never tell how long each drawing will take to complete depending on the quality of the photos supplied, artist availability, and when/if a customer will request modifications. Additionally, if one drawing takes longer due to above reasons, there is a knock on effect for other orders. This is just the price that we as a business (and sadly sometimes our customers too!) have to pay.
A combination of the popularity of our work and staff illnesses over the Christmas period has resulted in some regrettable delays. It’s our mission to provide excellent and memorable gifts and top-notch customer service, so we will be looking to improve our turn-around times and estimated delivery dates over the coming year."