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Forum > Beginner's Forum > Is it "legal?" to sell clothing, using commercial patterns ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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Is it "legal?" to sell clothing, using commercial patterns
Are ppl. allowed (is it "legal?") to sell clothing made from commercial patterns (e.g., on your blog or site or Etsy store)
BJHM
BJHM
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Date: 2/5/14 2:46 AM

I'm confused and grateful for anyone who can set me straight. Decades ago, I assisted a highly educated and professionally-trained designer as she would market her original designs - mostly dresses - to retail boutiques (in multiple sizes, etc., for them to re-sell of course). Although occasionally she had a dress somewhat similar to the basic silhouette of, say, a specific V. pattern (there were only ~ 4 companies then!) they were never even close to identical, with design details that made them unique, a box-pleated skirt or whatever. She emphasized repeatedly one cannot offer a garment from a commercial pattern (like Vogue, Butterick, Simplicity, McCall's) for resale, in a store or personally.
But lately I noticed folks in their garment Pattern Review post things like, "It's for sale on my web site, or my Etsy store, etc." (although it is unchanged in design). One reviewed tonight is the exact Vogue pattern for sale on the PR person's EU retail website. There is no mention anywhere that the perfectly-executed garment is straight from a commercial pattern.
So is this no longer a "rule" everywhere? Is this only true in the USA? Since there are dozens of pattern "companies" or "designers" in this new century, is it true at all anymore? What is legal or what does copyright mean on the pattern envelope? (I don't want to do anything wrong! Can you say, I can make this Vogue Pattern 55555 in your size, send me your measurements? I notice lots of Etsy shops show a costume or whatever and say send your #'s, here's the price)? Hope this makes sense and THANK YOU for your help!

HanPanda
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Subject: Is it legal? to sell clothing, using commercial patterns Date: 2/5/14 7:09 AM

This is a loaded question...don't rely on lay people. You should talk to an attorney.

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DolphinDancer30

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Date: 2/5/14 9:29 AM

That was a hot topic a few years back. Here's a link:
link

PattiAnnJ
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Subject: Is it legal? to sell clothing, using commercial patterns Date: 2/5/14 9:33 AM

What does it state on the pattern envelope regarding the sale of items made from the pattern?

And, you can always include the cost of the pattern then include it with the receipt of the finished garment.

-- Edited on 2/5/14 10:02 AM --

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

ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 2/5/14 12:43 PM

This is another large and informative thread about this most involved and some might say convoluted topic.

zazzie
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In reply to BJHM <<
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Date: 2/5/14 1:47 PM

Like Hanpanda said.

If you intend to proceed to sale garments made from someone else's pattern, ask for a legal advice from a legal advisor from your jurisdiction.

Don't let anyone - NO ONE- on the Internet tell you that a copyright / intellectual property issue can be covered thoroughly in a forum post or a personal blog.

You may find free or low cost service in your area, like a community or university or college legal clinic for example.
-- Edited on 2/5/14 1:47 PM --

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SheBear0320
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Date: 2/5/14 9:02 PM

And don't be afraid to contact the pattern company and ask for permission to use their patterns.

I have had really positive responses from some companies -- both for straight sewing from a pattern to using a sewing pattern as a sizing base.



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Addierecoy
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In reply to SheBear0320 <<
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Date: 2/5/14 9:26 PM

Quote: SheBear0320
And don't be afraid to contact the pattern company and ask for permission to use their patterns.



I have had really positive responses from some companies -- both for straight sewing from a pattern to using a sewing pattern as a sizing base.








Yes, this.

You will get a definitive answer, and most of the time they are very good about granting use.

Tee Jones Actie

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Date: 2/6/14 8:41 AM

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

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Ivalyn "Tee" Jones-Actie
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Baja Susana
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Subject: Is it legal? to sell clothing, using commercial patterns Date: 2/6/14 10:57 AM

I was going to share the link to the thread that I started about this very subject. Please follow the link that Shanti posted. I have researched this thoroughly. While pattern companies and designers large and small will tell you that you cannot use their patterns for resale. You absolutely, unequivocally can.
The US law says that utlilitarian items, such as shoes and clothing cannot be copyrighted. Further once a pattern is released to the world, it is open to any and all that choose to duplicate it. The only thing copyrighted about a pattern is the envelope itself.
Think about how one design say DVF's iconic wrap dress has spead around the world and is copied ad infinitude. If you call the designers and pattern companies, they will tell you that their designs are copyrighted. They are not.
But do the research and decide for yourself.

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Baja Susana
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