I get asked this question A LOT! I, like most people, am very amenable and can usually do something to suit even the smallest of budgets.
That said, sometimes the answer has to be no, even if it means losing the sale.
Take my paper star lanterns for instance,
I was told recently that "you can get those in Ikea for 7quid." Yes, you can, I have one in my bedroom from Ikea*.
(Apologies for the appalling photo!)
Here's the thing, when you buy from Ikea or any other large chain store you are buying mass produced products made by machines. When you buy from me, or any other small business you are buying (in most cases) a one off. I handmake all my products from scratch. I've spent 1.5hours today making one lantern. Cutting out the paper from my template, folding it then gluing it together. I charge £9.99 including a set of battery lights!
If I charged for my time (at mimimum wage £7.83per hour) and materials I would have to charge £17.24 and I'm sure I wouldn't sell one. So, I guess what I'm trying to say is, yes my products are slightly more expensive than some but I'm trying to make a living. Buy local, buy handmade and more importantly appreciate the individuality.
Here's the link to my ETSY shop if you wish to buy a lantern, or you could just go to Ikea.....
*other shops are available!