We've had a lot of questions coming up lately regarding teaching & selling ornaments and/or patterns, so I want to address these here.
Below is a list of FAQs.. PLEASE READ these if you are making and/or thinking of selling, anything relating to any ornament pattern or design sold or distributed by me, Staci Ann Lowry, or any of my affiliates (including designs by Monica Mihajlovic of SugarPlum and Darlene Anderson of Prairie Creations Ornaments).
A few quick rules of thumb:
*Under NO circumstance, can you distribute any eBook without permission from the author/creator. This means no photocopying (other than for your own personal use), sharing ANYWHERE online, uploading to social media or groups (even if they are private), or absolutely ANY other means of distribution. THIS IS ILLEGAL. (see FAQs below for further info).
(If you know of anyone who is illegally sharing any of my work, please CONTACT ME. I offer a reward for tipping me off about the illegal use of my eBooks/designs.)
*Much of this comes down to what is morally right. If you learned it from me (or Monica), that means we put our love, time, and work into coming up with it. It is NOT okay with us to claim any of our techniques or designs as your own, or to teach it to others without asking our permission.... and it is completely ILLEGAL to share/copy/distribute any of our copyrighted works (please read all of the FAQs below for more details).
*If you are unsure about what you are allowed to do regarding any of our patterns, please just ask!
Copyright refers to the laws that govern the ownership of an original creation. Copyright laws exist to protect those who create a work, from the unauthorized distribution of that work by others.
Owning the 'copyright' provides the original creator of a work, a set of exclusive rights. Under copyright law, these exclusive rights belong to the creator only.
Several exclusive rights typically attach to the holder of a copyright:
- to produce copies or reproductions of the work and to sell those copies (including, typically, electronic copies)
- to import or export the work
- to create derivative works (works that adapt the original work)
- to perform or display the work publicly
- to sell or cede these rights to others
The phrase "exclusive right" means that only the copyright holder is free to exercise those rights, and others are prohibited from using the work without the holder's permission.
What does Copyright cover?
Copyright covers the actual work. So, a book or eBook, a piece of literature, a composition, a song or recording, etc.
Note above, that copyright also protects the creator against the distribution of 'derivative works'... works that are based upon, or adapted from, an already existing work.
What does Copyright NOT cover?
Copyright does not cover techniques.
Copyright is NOT the same as a patent or trademark, which are entirely different.
Yes, you may.
Under copyright law, it is typically NOT okay to sell a finished product created from a craft pattern, without the explicit written permission of the designer, as the finished piece is technically considered to be a 'derivative work'.
However, both Monica and I are totally fine with it. We give permission for you to sell your finished product created using any pattern you may have purchased from us.
I do ask that if someone asks how you made it, that you give me credit for the design, and tell them where they can find the pattern (please direct them to: www.theornamentgirl.com).
As a purchaser of my eBook(s), you own one copy. You MAY print a copy for your own personal use.
Many people are confused about what is legal/illegal when it comes to eBooks, because they are so much more easily shared/copied/distributed than a regular, physical book.
However, they are covered under the very same laws as a regular book, and as any other copyrighted work.
For example, when you purchase a physical book or borrow one from the library, you are not allowed to take it to Staples and make photocopies and give it out/sell it to other people.
The same goes for eBooks. You cannot make copies (whether digital or physical) and distribute them (even though it may seem sooo very easy to do!)
According to the US Copyright Office....
"Uploading or downloading works protected by copyright without the authority of the copyright owner is an infringement of the copyright owner's exclusive rights of reproduction and/or distribution. Anyone found to have infringed a copyrighted work may be liable for statutory damages up to $30,000 for each work infringed and, if willful infringement is proven by the copyright owner, that amount may be increased up to $150,000 for each work infringed. In addition, an infringer of a work may also be liable for the attorney's fees incurred by the copyright owner to enforce his or her rights."
This means, if you share/upload an eBook in a group (even if it's private), send the eBook to someone else (including by email), make photocopies of the eBook, or otherwise share an eBook in any way, shape, or form.... you are infringing upon the rights of the copyright owner, and could be served with some very hefty fines.
If you are aware of the illegal sharing/distribution of my eBooks, please let me know. If it's legitimate, I offer a reward for notifying me of this.
Please note: Purchasing an eBook from me only gives you ownership of ONE copy of the eBook, for your own personal use... it does not transfer any copyright ownership over to you, and does not give you the right to distribute it.
You may NOT re-distribute my eBooks in any way, shape, or form, without my explicit written permission. This includes distributing them to those you are teaching.
You may NOT re-create my eBooks or Original Designs, and sell/distribute them as your own. (This is considered a 'Derivative Work' of my Original Work, to which I own the copyright.)
You may NOT use my eBooks, videos, or content to instruct a class without my explicit written permission.
If you teach someone else one of my original designs, please also have them purchase the pattern from me directly. (please see FAQ: What is Considered an Original Design?)
Note: If you want to teach a class using my eBooks and/or videos, please just email me and ask. I will gladly work with you. In nearly all cases, I am happy to provide my written permission to teach my design, and will even work with you on wholesale pricing of eBook copies, as long as my copyrighted work is being protected.
You can also provide my eBooks as an AFFILIATE, and earn 50% of the sale. Please click HERE for more info about how you can become an affiliate.)
I sincerely appreciate your working with me, and respecting my hard work!
The ornaments on my site fall under 2 categories:
- Designs based on the old-fashioned, 'folded fabric' craft.
- Original designs
1. Designs based on the old-fashioned 'folded fabric' craft.
Like quilting, drawing, painting, etc... the craft technique behind 'quilted ornaments' - folding fabric into triangles, and forming a star pattern - has been around for a long, long time.
My own version of that old-fashioned craft is the Basic Star Pattern. I gave it this name as a way to set it apart from the old craft form. I did this because I have my own personal methods & techniques for making them, and my own spin on creating the design.
I teach the Basic Star pattern for free on my website, but again, please take note that many of the personal techniques I teach are my own. (please see FAQ: What's Different About Your Methods?)
***Techniques cannot be copyrighted. If they could, then there couldn't be quilting, painting, drawing, or sculpting classes.***
However, I do still ask that if you are to re-teach my exact methods for making the Basic Star ornament, using the exact techniques you've learned from me, that you please give me credit for my techniques, by referring people to my website, using this link: https://ornamentgirls.com/basic-star-workshop/
I ask this because it is simply the right thing to do.
Again, you may not distribute my eBooks, videos, or content (even those I offer for free) without my explicit written consent.
Designs which fall under Category 1:
Pine Cones: I teach my own techniques, tips, & design ideas such as stripes & swirls, but basic folded fabric pine cones is a craft that has been around forever. If you are to re-teach my exact methods for making a Pine Cone ornament, using the exact techniques or design ideas you've learned from me, I ask that you give me credit for these techniques, by referring people to my website.
Trees: Again, I teach my own techniques, tips, & design ideas such as stripes & swirls, but basic folded fabric trees is a craft that has been around forever. If you are to re-teach my exact methods for making a Tree ornament, using the exact techniques or design ideas you've learned from me, I ask that you give me credit for these techniques, by referring people to my website.
Snow Globes: Again, I teach my own techniques, tips, & design ideas for the basic Snow Globe ornaments.... but please also note that the name 'Snow Globe Ornament' is my original name. If you are to re-teach my exact methods for making a Snow Globe ornament, using the exact techniques or design ideas you've learned from Monica or I, we ask that you honor our work, by referring people to TheOrnamentGirl.com.
2. Original Designs:
All other designs that I (and my affiliates) teach on my websites, and provide for the Ornament Girls Club, are ORIGINAL designs, as are the names we've given them, and the methods we use to teach them.
Please do not claim any of my Original Designs as your own, or teach them without my permission. Again, a lot of time, work, and love has gone into each design I create, and I ask that you give me credit for this work.
As always, any eBook, video, or piece of content created by me (or my partner, Monica) may NOT be shared, uploaded, re-created (this is considered a 'derivative work'), or distributed in any way.
Designs that fall under Category 2:
Kaleidoscope (coming February 2018)
Pinwheel (original pattern written in 2014, July 2017, & November 2017)
Snowflake (April 2017, & September 2017 designs)
Poinsettia (December, 2017)
Spiral (March 2017)
Bloom I, II, & August 2016
Witch Hat (October 2017)
Umbrella (August 2017)
Half & Half
Galaxy (coming soon)
.. and ALL OTHER designs found on my website.
Gilded Heart (January 2018)
ALL monthly designs released since January 2018
Many of the techniques used, such as specific folds we use (example: Prism Fold), and line drawing techniques were created & named by me and/or or my design team.
While 'techniques' are generally not protected by copyright (just as a painting, drawing, or quilting techniques are not)... they have come about through much time, love, and work.
Thus, if you are to re-teach any of our original techniques, we would love, and greatly appreciate, if you will honor our work by crediting us and referring those you teach to TheOrnamentGirl.com.
The original way of making folded fabric ornaments uses squares of fabric, folded & pinned with a different method than what I teach.
I came up with my personal methods as a way to save on pins and fabric, and to achieve a neater and straighter look.
I pioneered the idea of using 'inner & outer guidelines' to keep lines straight, and to match up the two halves of the ornaments, among other techniques for lining things up.
In addition to these things, I've created many other folds (as has my design team) and techniques for creating all kinds of looks and designs.
As stated in another FAQ, techniques are generally not covered by copyright. However, as we have put so much of our love and time into our work, we would love if you will honor our work, and not pass off our ideas as your own in any way. (Thank you!)