Home > Card Making > Copyrighting Your Craft Designs

Copyrighting Your Craft Designs

By: Natasha Reed - Updated: 6 Nov 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Crafts Copyright Work Cards Projects

If you are a crafter, copyright is an important issue to avoid other people copying or passing off your work as their own. You also need to be aware that you aren’t infringing on anyone else’s copyright when you make cards or projects or even use rubber stamps.

What is Copyright?
Copyright is a policy which is designed to prevent the unauthorised copying of forms of expression, literary, dramatic, artistic and musical for example.

Creative works, such as songs, books, films and illustrations are protected by copyright. Authors’ work is protected under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act of 1998 until the end of the 70th year from the author's death.

How Does This Affect Crafters?
For card makers, the most relevant category under the 1998 Act is 'artistic work'. This includes a graphic work, photograph, sculpture or collage, painting, drawing, engraving, etching or any ‘work of artistic craftsmanship’.

What is Plagiarism?
This is when someone copies your work and declares it as their own. This may be intentional or not. This is an infringement of copyright and the copyright owner will usually want to stop the repetition or continuation of the plagiarism, and will want compensation. The easiest way to avoid being guilty of plagiarism is not to copy other people’s work or, if using other ideas, ask permission first and fully credit the author.

Is My Work Copyrighted?
To be protected under copyright, any work you produce must be original (not copied from anywhere else), complete (not half finished as you cannot copyright an idea) and owned and created by you. If you create work for your job the copyright belongs to the employer, unless you are a freelance designer or cardmaker, etc. Copyright doesn’t affect people who accidentally produce similar work through their own efforts.

Do I Need to Include the © Symbol on my Work?
Anything that you write or create is your copyright, assuming that it is not copied from someone else’s work, as soon as it is produced. You don’t have to put the © symbol on your work but if you do it may help to make others think twice about copying it.

Can I Use Materials in My Work?
For crafters another copyright dilemma is whether or not items like rubber stamps, punches and peel-offs, which are the work of professional designers, are protected. Many card making manufacturers, particularly those selling rubber stamps, have now come up with a policy that they are happy to allow crafters to use their products freely, even when making cards to sell, as long as all images are stamped by hand and not by any sort of machine.

Rubber Stamp Guide
As a quick guide, here is what you will probably be ok with in terms of copyright and rubber stamps. This is not a definitive list though, and if you are in any doubt at all, contact the manufacturer.

YOU CAN

  • Use it to design your own work.
  • Use it to create cards to sell at local stalls, local craft markets and local shops.
YOU CAN NOT
  • Copy or adapt a rubber stamp from one purchased.
  • Use it for printing.
  • Use the images as business logos.
  • Use images to sell cards through a national chain of shops.
Useful Addresses
  • The Patent Office – www.patent.gov.uk/index.htm
  • Design & Artists Copyright Society – www.dacs.org.uk
  • The Copyright Licensing Agency Ltd – www.cla.co.uk
  • The World Intellectual Property Organisation – www.intellectual-property.gov.uk

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
My name is Nihal. I can give you 1-5 man 0r woman man power at my home. Making card or Assembling the blocks . I haven’t any idea about this type jobs anyone can help me. Thanks Nihal
NIHAL - 6-Nov-18 @ 2:56 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Kal
    Re: Sell Your Home Made Cards
    How to start selling greeting cards online and making extra money and starting a business around at home
    17 November 2018
  • Kal
    Re: Sell Your Home Made Cards
    I want to start selling greeting cards online I have to do a form to sign up to selling the cards for
    12 November 2018
  • Fiona
    Re: Making Wreaths
    Hello - how much moss should I buy for a wreath? It seems to be sold by weight .... Thanks!
    11 November 2018
  • Sue Lutz
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Want to make an English pattern but not sure of the following terms: 1.WL. fwd ? Does it mean a YO 2. ? W.O.P.K....NOT SURE…
    7 November 2018
  • NIHAL
    Re: Copyrighting Your Craft Designs
    My name is Nihal. I can give you 1-5 man 0r woman man power at my home. Making card or Assembling the blocks . I haven’t any…
    6 November 2018
  • Wambi
    Re: Knitting Stitches
    Trying to find out what no stitch" on a chart means. Can you help?
    1 November 2018
  • Carol Tamplin
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    I'm starting to make poncho pattern but some of the terminology is confusing. Is 'stand off ' another term for cast off?
    25 October 2018
  • Elaine
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Knitting a cardigan but do not understand the following: working 1 stitch less at beg of dec row at set, work 12 rows as…
    23 October 2018
  • KIRI
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Knitting a Hat: Katy Tricot, do not understand 'Wrap & Turn. Can you help?
    21 October 2018
  • Lyn
    Re: Knitting Stitches
    I'm knitting a very old aran pattern can you tell me what Tw2F and Tw2B are please
    19 October 2018