Copyright on Patterns

This is going to be a short post as I have had one heck of a week (those of you on my Facebook and Ravelry friends will know all about it, for all others I will post about it next week).

The reason I have decided to write a post on Copyright on Patterns is due to the fact that a busybody left me a comment which I duly deleted (as per my right since I own this blog).

This busybody decided that it was their right to intefere in my business and report me to Interweave Press/Knitting Daily as I had knitted the “Tilted Duster” Cardigan and duly put it up for sale in my Etsy store.

I am fully aware of the copyright issues involving knitting patterns and copying them or knitting the garments and then selling them for profit. As far as I am aware it is not illegal to have knitted the garment for yourself, duly finding out it is miles too big or that you don’t actually like the fit and then selling it to recoup the cost of the yarn, as is the case on the “Tilted Duster Cardigan” in my Etsy store.

There are a couple of garments in my Etsy store which were knitted for myself then duly realising that they do not fit correctly after many hours of hard work and I have decided to sell them purely to recoup the cost of the yarn. These garments are only ever knitted once (I only ever knit a pattern once as I get bored very easily) and therefore not sold for profit or knitted to sell. These garments may end up being placed in a charity shop, where they will be selling for profit (even though it will be for a good cause), so are the charity shops breaking the law!!! Perhaps I should just bin the garments!!!!

This busybody obviously thinks I am doing something wrong as they stated they have reported me to Interweave Press/Knitting Daily and I am duly waiting for an email from them to which I will inform them that the garment was initially knitted for myself but as it did not fit I decided to sell it.

What are your thoughts on this, should I simply bin the garments which I have made for myself and after hours and hours of work find they do not fit me correctly, or am I in the right to put them up to sell??

One last final point I would like to make, I have never stated I have designed these garments, I have simply stated that they are hand-knitted by myself and I never knit multiple garments out of one pattern, either for myself or to sell (life is too short to re-knit a garment, hubby’s ribbed jumper is the exception in this and was only re-knitted to prove my love for him). Also as you will tell from the prices I sell my hand-knitted items, they are so cheap as I just want to recoup the cost of the yarn used.


7 thoughts on “Copyright on Patterns

  1. I’m sure this was probably just a bit of bullying, and that there’s nothing to worry about.

    I hope you don’t mind but I have posted a link to your blog from my Tylluan’s Recommended Blogs page. The idea is to encourage my blog friends to come and visit other blogs that I think they will enjoy and generally to get blogland moving a bit! :wave:


    • Thank you for your comment. Some people are so nasty, it is just as well I can delete those nasty comments LOL.

      Of course I don’t mind your linking my blog, it is very kind of you.




  2. I see where you’re coming from, but… the thing with copyright laws is that they don’t take into account the reason WHY you’re selling something made from a copyrighted pattern, nor do they care how much you’re selling it for, it’s just the fact that you’re selling it in the first place.

    IMHO, if your perspective is simply to recoupe the cost of yarn, frog (undo) the projects and reball into skeins, then sell for the cost of yarn. That way, what you’re not selling is a finished item of someone else’s pattern. That way, no infringements are happening on your end.


    • I understand where you are coming from, but there is no way I could unravel anything that I have made (I hate doing it if I have made a mistake and have to unravel a couple of inches) it would just devastate me to unravel all my hard work. Also the yarn would be creased and I would have to spend further time getting it back to a decent knitting condition and even then I would not get back anywhere near what I had spent on it.

      I personally don’t see my doing anything wrong in selling a one off item that I have knitted up for myself and either it doesn’t fit or I decide I just don’t like it (after spending approx 100 hours knitting it) and then selling it.

      If I was to knit a dozen garments in all the different sizes from a pattern and then go out and sell them on a market stall/website then it would be a totally different issue.

      I am in the process of learning to design patterns for shawls etc and personally will have no problem in someone knitting one up and then deciding to sell that one garment.

      Many people have different opinions on this subject, hence why I have not re-visited the issue.

      I appreciate everyones opinions and appreciate your taking the time to leave a comment.

      Kind regards



  3. I just took a look at your Etsy store. Good grief woman! Are you even getting the yarn cost back? Now I know you’re in the UK, but here in the USA you are not considered “in business” unless you are at least TRYING to make a profit. I think that bit of common sense probably applies everywhere else in the world as well. Granted, the internet has made copyright of some items harder to enforce, but also people have gotten overly litigious these days. But the corporate legal honchos will make sure cooler heads prevail. They know copyright infringement or not. Lastly … I wish I could find decent ready-to-wear that cost as little as most of your pieces and looked as good. 😉


  4. Hello, I came by your blog by chance, and I’d like to advise that your busybody is incorrect. Even if there is a Copyright on the pattern, there is no monopoly on the object you create from the pattern. So you have nothing to worry about! Best of luck in your work.


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