February 01, 2007



Ugh! That is the absolute worst. It's happened to me before too. It's just so disrepectful, especially since they seem to admire you so much.


Ugh! That is the absolute worst. It's happened to me before too. It's just so disrepectful, especially since they seem to admire you so much.


I've often wondered about this whole debate, which is kind of like a white elephant...hardly talked about, but obviously there. In fact, the sentence "So how much do you have to modify something before it becomes your own?" was presented to me by a friend just yesterday while looking at a Simplicity pattern.

And then there's the obvious fact that nothing is new, everything is gathered from grandmother's, artists, culture...

I'm definitely guilty of trying something out that I've seen on a fellow blogger's site (siting my inspiration, of course). Sometimes I wonder if I should even look at certain sites, because everything that they seem to put up I want to create (mind you before I even knew they were going to do it) but then I feel they've beaten me to the punch and it would be considered rude for me to try it. So often times I end up not even trying to make that (fill in the blank) because I have three people that I admire on my blogroll who have recently done it.

I'm not sure what my point is. Haha! Maybe that it's eerily odd that I have a desire to make something and then it magically ends up on someone's blog. An indicator that we're all being influenced elsewhere? Just putting these thoughts out there.

PS - The same friend who was asking me about originality and ownership yesterday has had her work blatantly copied and sold. It's a messy thing, this whole creative license thing.


Eesh, I'm not sure I'd even know my own style if I came across it. Hard to say. I wonder if this person really does realize what she's doing.


Imitation is only the sincerest form of flattery if you credit the person you're imitating. When that doesn't happen, it's less like a compliment and more a theft. I'm sorry this has happened, Alison. I hope this person does as you ask and cuts. it. out.


I'm so sorry this happened to you, it's so creepy. While it's difficult to know quite what counts as copying and what is inspiration, I don't think it's so hard to be respectful to those that you find inspiring. I don't think you're being over-sensitive, I think everyone would react in the same way. It's the theft of something so personal and a denial of the importance of the work and that's gone into producing your wonderful and thoughtful style.


i'm glad you went ahead and mentioned this all too common occurance. i was up to my ears in frustration just two days ago over the very same thing.
there is a girl in my town that used to be a friend, she copies my every move. i don't usually worry too much about it because no one really goes to her site or her etsy shop, but some days it really does get to me!
i am dilligent about only producing what comes from my heart and soul, staying true to that...what bothers me is that someone who isn't me and doesn't feel passionately about the same things still copies me...why? i've never said anything to her, though i've been tempted.


Your being much more gracious about this than I would be.


We all browse blogs for inspiration, the majority of us though have the guts to credit where our inspiration came from. There is no shame in this. The shame comes when you don't acknowledge and try to pass someone else's creativity off as your own.


oh alison. this won't help - but i know how you feel.

good for you for speaking your mind.... xo


This is sad. One can only hope she is so tremendously mind blown by your work that she is even not aware of what she's doing.


browsing for inspiration is one thing- stealing images and posts wholesale is another. I had a bunch of images stolen from my blog not too long ago (for the THIRD time). Now *everything* I upload to Flickr & use on my blog is copyright stamped. No fun, but that's what keeps people honest I guess.


Wot Cari said.

Much too gracious.

Do you really think someone who is doing something like that is going to respond to a hint?

(God, I hope it isn't me...I've been lurking here for months...!)


ps. can someone wise me up on how to copyright stamp on flickr? You've got me all paranoid.


Er, if you think it's you there's something wrong - surely you would know if you'd stolen ideas? Using someone's words or images is a breach of copyright and it's stealing. Using their layout and ideas isn't strictly speaking a breach of copyright, as ideas and layout aren't copyright as such, but i think we'd all prefer that it be acknowledged. You know, like "This post of Alison's made me think...blah blah blah". That would be honest.


Hi, yes this is a difficult area, and I think we all at some point have made things and made them our own whilst the design has been someone elses.
Here in the UK I have been very interested in the whole thing as I have worked as a (fine) artist for some years. After taking some advice apparently using elements of a design is ok, ie, if you make something from Laura Ashley fabric and sell it on, this isnt illegal, but (obviously) producing your own copy of the fabric, and then aking the toy would be questionable.
When creating book art, elements from 'found' sources are ok (and you are able to sell these items on). And, using templates from patterns as I have with my leaves as a part of a project is ok too.

It boils down to, if a design is copied to the tee and then sold on, this is not acceptable, however, if I were to make a dress from a pattern, and change the neckline completely, from turtle neck to princess, this is ok.

All this said, copying almost word for word, stitch for stitch is not only wrong, but also slightly weird.

I hope you manage to get this issue sorted soon.
Caroline (newbie delurked!) xxx



I'm so sorry this happened. I find it so sad that some people find the need to copy other's designs and not put themselves out there creatively. At the very least, not crediting has no excuse! I admire your graciousness at the matter though--I'm afraid I'd be spitting mad! lol.

I hope this doesn't dampen your spirits from sharing your lovely work on your blog; I have been reading Six and a Half Stiches for several months and really am inspired by the creative energy that flows from this blog.

Sending many kind thoughts your way... ♥


i'm so sorry that this has happened to you. i second (third?) the other comments... you are being extremely gracious in your anger. there is absolutely a difference between inspiration... what makes this community wonderful... and just copying something exactly. it's very sad.

so what

You craft bloggers blow my mind. The thought that you have any sort of property rights over basic skills that a generation ago all women possesed (sewing?thrift?) is astounding. Sewing smocks and quilting used to be a survival skill shared by all women of certain classes, now we act like it is a creative enterprise...to be enjoyed by those who are fortunate enough to have a dsl connection, wireless internet, and enough spare time on their hands to have a blog. Give it up girls, your just sewing, ripping off Japanese craft books that you are wealthy enough to buy, fabric that costs 15$ a yard.


Hey Al

That's crappy. And it seems "so what" has a few sour grapes as well!


Well, can you post the link to this other site? I'm dying to see it now.

Keep up the good work, it clearly comes from your heart and all those that follow your blog know that.


Yep, i agree totally crappy. So What, if you find all of this boring why are you reading our blogs?? Maybe you have 'too much time on your hands'.

so what

just a few thoughts...
i think that this blog is cool and inspiring, no doubt, but if anyone thinks that an open forum is in anyway protected, you are mistaken. your information is not proprietary, not protected by any laws, or evidentally codes of decency. i just think that it is unfortunate that people mistake a blog in the creative commons for published copyrighted material. so, if you want your material to be protected, draft your own patterns, become a fabric designer, get published, and leave it at that, completely commercial. But if your want to engage is the reparte that is blogging, accept that it is free and open to all.


where is this other blog?


Just wanted to pop in to say that I'm sorry, and I know how much this sucks. And I think you are handling it remarkably well - with grace, and a clear and firm request. Thinking of you...

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