As a professional artist for nearly 40 years, and having served as an art commissioner for our small town, I have had ample opportunity to discuss the finer points of copyright law with fellow artists and can say, without a doubt, that there are almost as many perspectives on the issue as there are artists. The debate over originality and copyright protection has exploded, in pace with the availability of unlimited inspiration found on the Internet. After careful research, (which included our review of copyright law and cases that have been brought before the courts, as well as the published positions of several industry leaders including Bead & Button magazine and Etsy), we feel that it is still too hard to clearly discern, with absolute certainty in some circumstances, what constitutes an original design or derivative work and what falls under the common domain. With that said, we have arrived at our personal position with regards to copyrights and have attempted to clearly define how you may use our products (tutorials, kits, and designs), so that you have a level of comfort in knowing what your rights are when using our products. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact us using the form at the bottom of the page.
We copyright our written and photographed tutorials (patterns), which represent our original and unique intellectual property (just like a book). As such, making copies of our tutorials (in full or part), to either share, sell or give away, is strictly prohibited by law and we will not hesitate to report any infringement of our copyrights to the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Criminal Division of the United States Department of Justice for investigation and prosecution. We understand the temptation, but please respect our copyrights, as this is the sole means we have to support ourselves. If you cannot afford one of our patterns, or know someone who has difficulty affording a pattern, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will gladly do what we can to help out with the price – we’ve been there, and we’re all in this together.
Our jewelry designs
Our jewelry designs include projects that are made using popular beading techniques (that fall under the common domain and as such are not restricted by copyright), variations of popular beading techniques, and, as far as we know, completely original works. As many artist do, we have often been inspired, whether consciously or unconsciously, by other jewelry designs we run across (sometimes years earlier). We never knowingly duplicate another artist’s jewelry design without getting their permission and/or referencing their original design. If and when we create a design that we know has been inspired by a published piece, we take great pains to create our own unique design by making changes to the process, materials and/or finished feel of the piece (meeting the two criteria the U.S. courts have used to determine whether two pieces of jewelry have “substantial similarity”).
Can I sell the jewelry I make using the tutorials and/or kits I purchase from you?
Yes! We have absolutely no problem with your selling the jewelry that you make using our tutorials and/or kits. In the past, we did ask that you give us credit for our original copyrighted designs, however we no longer feel the personal need to require you to disclose our authorship and copyright, as we feel that it may inhibit your ability to promote and sell your handiwork. But, just as we don’t claim other people’s work as our own, we ask that you not represent our design(s) as your own (i.e. you can proudly say that you made the piece, but please don’t claim that you designed it).
There are numerous articles attempting to disseminate copyright law and how it specifically applies to jewelry design, and if you are interested, we encourage you to research it further. We found an article written and published on Etsy, a globally known and highly respected artisan marketplace, to be clearly written and informative. You can view this article by visiting https://www.etsy.com/help/article/263.
Thank you for taking the time to review our copyright policy. And again, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns regarding our designs or copyright policy.