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Forum > Miscellaneous > "copyright protected" patterns??! ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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"copyright protected" patterns??!
legally binding to not use pattern to make items for sale?
dogyeargirl
dogyeargirl  Friend of PR
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Date: 9/14/13 10:38 AM

I teach a sewing class for special education students. We are a school-based enterprise, and sell the items we make. I bought a purse pattern that says on the back, something like, " this pattern is copyright protected...you are forbidden to sell items made from this pattern..." Is this legally binding? Can I be sued or end up in jail if my class makes purses from this pattern and sells the purses? I am going to make slight adjustments to the pattern - would that keep me safe from being hauled into a courtroom? I saw a similar statement on a headband knitting pattern. I would appreciate any advice on this matter!
-- Edited on 9/14/13 10:41 AM --

mastdenman
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Date: 9/14/13 11:24 AM

Here's a prior thread on this same issue. There are purse and bag patterns that are sold where the designer doesn't care if you sell the item. I would recommend that you find one of those. Keep in mind that these threads do not constitute real legal advise and even if what you are doing is legal, you may have to defend yourself if the designer disagrees. Good luck. By the way Wild Ginger has a free program called Wild Things which has some bags in it and there are free patterns on fabric.com which have been drafted by Hot Patterns. NAYY.

Good luck.

------
Marilyn

January 2009 to January 2010 81 yards out and 71yards in January 2010 to the present 106.7 yards out and 146.5 yards in. January 2011 to the present: 47 yards out and 69 yards in.

KathySews
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Date: 9/14/13 11:26 AM

There was a long discussion on copyright protection here a while back. You can probably search on the word copyright and find it. There was good information in the discussion. I think the answer is that you cannot sell things from this pattern as stated. Just as you cannot use a book or art as your own.

You might try emailing the designer to ask permission

dogyeargirl
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Date: 9/14/13 12:32 PM

Thank you for your replies. They took me to the article linked below, which was helpful. I am relieved that it looks like the copyright claim to items made from purchased patterns is not enforceable, but wd feel a lot better if they would not put such false legal claims on their patterns.

http://www.tabberone.com/Trademarks/CopyrightLaw/Patterns.shtml

a7yrstitch
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In reply to dogyeargirl <<
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Date: 9/14/13 1:17 PM

It is a simple matter to communicate with the pattern company. I recently had a pleasant surprise in a, 'Yes, you can reproduce for sale with no additional fees, charges, pattern purchases or royalties.'. I have that letter of permission saved in my files.

Recommending that you check with someone in your school office, music department or speech department as a start point for guidance on copyrighted materials.
-- Edited on 9/14/13 1:48 PM --

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quiltingwolf
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Subject: copyright protected patterns??! Date: 9/15/13 7:36 AM

from last I heard on this subject a designer can copyright a pattern but has absolutely no control over a finished product. The copyright is for the pattern only.

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quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

Sharon1952
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Date: 9/15/13 10:13 AM

Do a search for Free Purse or handbag patterns. There are tons on the internet. I did that for the sewing class I taught at school. We found free patterns for just about everything you'd want to make.

------
Sewing: A creative mess is better than tidy idleness. ~Author Unknown

PattiAnnJ
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Subject: copyright protected patterns??! Date: 9/15/13 11:11 AM

Do as "a7yrstitch" said. That way you are sure and not floating around from one declaration to another.

Make sure you state that this is for special education students, and what the proceeds are to be used for.

------
I dont give them Hell, I just tell the truth about them and they think its Hell. Harry Truman

"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

utahliz
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In reply to quiltingwolf <<
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Date: 9/18/13 1:19 PM

Quote: quiltingwolf
from last I heard on this subject a designer can copyright a pattern but has absolutely no control over a finished product. The copyright is for the pattern only.

This comes up over and over and over again. There is so much misinformation out there that even Vogue Patterns magazine published an article with erroneous information. Just like the urban legends, this misinformation lives on via the internet.

The copyright applies to the pattern. A dress cannot be copyrighted. The designer of the pattern has ABSOLUTELY no legal right to control what you do with an item you make from the pattern.

You don't have to have one pattern for each article you make or sell, either. The copyright prevents you from copying the portion of the pattern that is copyright protected, not from making more than one dress, bag, etc.

What copyright law does make illegal, is copying/posting even portions of an email you received. Whether anyone has claimed copyright on it or not. We so concerned with making and even selling items from a sewing pattern, which is completely and utterly legal. But I almost never see/hear anyone point out that emails and blogs are used to violate copyright countless times every day.

Liz
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