The Intellectual Property Law Server

Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register.
Oct 25th, 2014, 11:41pm

Forums Forums Help Help Search Search Members Members Calendar Calendar Login Login Register Register
   Intellectual Property Forums
   Other
   Copyright Forum
(Moderators: Forum Admin, JimIvey, JSonnabend)
   Sewing pattern copyright
« Previous topic | Next topic »
Pages: 1  Reply Reply Send Topic Send Topic Print Print
   Author  Topic: Sewing pattern copyright  (Read 7005 times)
Apple
Newbie
*




   


Posts: 2
Sewing pattern copyright
« on: Oct 3rd, 2007, 3:39pm »
Quote Quote Modify Modify

Sewing patterns(instructions and/or pattern pieces included) often come with statements similar to this:  "This pattern is copyrighted and is intended for personal use only.  Please do not create this item for sale."
 
I've looked all over the web and have come to the conclusion that while the written/printed version of the pattern is covered by copyright, that the article that is made from the pattern is not. Particularly true if the item is a "useful article" such as clothing or a handbag.  
 
Here is my question, though:  because the statement is written directly on the pattern or the website where the pattern is sold, is the customer, upon buying the pattern, now engaged in a contract with the pattern designer to use the pattern for personal use only?
 
I am a pattern designer, but very small at this point and while I understand contracts are covered under state law, does anyone know of any cases they could direct me to?  I realize I will need to see an intellectual property lawyer at some point, but would appreciate any pointers before that time.  Thank you!
IP Logged
Bitsy
Guest
Re: Sewing pattern copyright
« Reply #1 on: Oct 3rd, 2007, 11:06pm »
Quote Quote Modify Modify Remove Remove

Look up software "click wrap" licenses and "shrink wrap" licenses, there are some similarities.  
 
I also think it will depend a great deal on the exact nature of the items you are selling patterns for.
 
As an aside, and I hope you will forgive the question, but this is something I've always wanted to ask someone like you, ever since I saw a really elaborate copyright notice on a pattern for a simple laundry bag: As a seller of sewing patterns for (presumbably) clothing, rather than a seller of the clothing you design, why are you concerned that someone might make something from your patterns for sale?  From a business perspective, I mean, how would preventing that help your business?    
 
Are the kind of people who buy ready-made versions of the things you are selling patterns for the same kind of people who would buy a pattern and sew it for themselves?   I suppose it depends on the pattern and your market.   I've just always wondered about this.
IP Logged
Apple
Newbie
*




   


Posts: 2
Re: Sewing pattern copyright
« Reply #2 on: Oct 4th, 2007, 3:38pm »
Quote Quote Modify Modify

I'd like to rephrase my original question and then address Bitsy's question.  
 
I believe that the right to control what happens to a copyrighted work after it leaves my hands is considered a moral right, which we do not have per se in this country.  Is this correct?
 
While I believe the situation is similar,  I also believe that software and computer code are given specific protection under copyright law that wouldn't extend to something like a sewing pattern.
 
Bitsy, it is a common practice among pattern designers to license the right to create and sell the designs from their patterns.  There is a financial benefit, of course.
 
Also, I create these items and sell them myself.  So giving others the freedom to sell the designs would be creating competition for myself.
IP Logged
Bitsy
Guest
Re: Sewing pattern copyright
« Reply #3 on: Oct 4th, 2007, 7:17pm »
Quote Quote Modify Modify Remove Remove

Apple, a very well-known case involving shrink wrap licenses involves a database of public domain material.  (Pro CD, Inc. v. Ziedenberg)  So my suggestion to look at shrink wrap licenses and click wrap licenses really is apt.
 
As for your original question, I think you were trying to ask how you can enter into a contract with the purchasers of your products that would prevent them from doing something with it that they otherwise would have the legal right to do.  You can, but how to do it is a contract law question, not a copyright question.  (Whether your patterns and/or the items made from them are subject to copyright protection in the first place would be a copyright question.)
 
I understand your desire not to create competition for yourself.  Though I'd note that--depending on what your designs are--there is a good chance that anyone interested in duplicating them in wholesale quantities would be able to develop their own pattern for the design without much difficulty.  They might even do so by examining a finished garment they purchased from you.  If I may make a non-copyright suggestion on this forum, you might want to consider obtaining a copy of "The Entrepreneur's Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing" by Kathleen Fasanella.  Fasanella is full of a lot of good advice for pattern makers and people starting their own clothing lines.
 
By the way, artists' moral rights do exist in the United States, but they only apply to limited types of works.  
IP Logged
Pages: 1  Reply Reply Send Topic Send Topic Print Print

« Previous topic | Next topic »
Powered by YaBB 1 Gold - SP 1.3.2!
Forum software copyright 2000-2004 Yet another Bulletin Board