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K Pawz Guest

Sorry everybody and TT....I have gone and deleted my thread on the annoying topic
It was getting a little out of hand and I had no intention of TT being pulled into the mess, sooooooo I have deleted it...if anyone has any concerns or would like to discuss the topic further email or PM me....I also apologize to all who have posted long responses and I have gone and deleted them!!  bear_flower


thumperantiques Newcastle, Ontario
Posts: 5,642

Hi Krista - I wondered what happened -I was in the middle of reading a post and it disappeared  :crackup: 



K Pawz Guest

sorry...just figured I would delete it before it got more out of hand!


K Pawz Guest

I have though pasted Luann's post here as I think she makes some amazing points for us all to follow!! Sorry I tried to go back and get some of the other good points that people have made, but silly me didn't open up a new browser when I pasted this one in and lost them all...I am the person with about 10 TT's open at a time, that is how I was able to get this one pasted in!!

This is such a touchy subject, I hesitated to even jump in.  In the field that we have chosen to work in (the bear world), it is very difficult to stay one step ahead of "the other guy" and even more difficult to fend off those that choose to imitate us.  My own personal thoughts have always been that the minute you offer your creations to the world, there will be someone, somewhere, who is more than willing to copy and/or re-create it and sell it as their own.  This thought pattern is whether you offer it as a pattern, a workshop with no pattern or as a finished product.  Someone will figure out a way to copy it.

In a world that is filled with high-tech gadgets, we can download photos, take pictures with our phones, garner ideas from magazines, websites and auction sites.  While it is wrong to copy someone else's work, in my opinion, the only way to control it is for the original artist to protect it.  What looks like a copy of someone else's work to one person,  may not even be close in another person's opinion.  This is where copyright and trademarks come into play.  At least here in the states, if you have a copyright or a trademark on something, it is up to the originating individual to protect and defend it.  I've defended my trademark more than once and have not only the federal government on my side, but a darn good attorney as well.  While we hate to see other people's work copied, it is up to the original artist to defend it, and this is especially true with e-Bay.  E-Bay asks no questions when someone files a report indicating that their trademark has been violated.  They remove the auctions and notify the offending party.  They don't want to get caught up in the middle of a trademark issue.  If I saw what I thought was a blatant copy of someone else's work, I'd contact the original artist directly.  You risk being kicked off of e-bay for contacting the offending party if they decide to report you.  Besides, again, the original artist is the only one that can defend their work.

A number of years ago, we were at at show and an "artist" who was new to the business, filled her table with the most obvious knock-offs of a well-known artist.  The artist whose work was being duplicated was also at the show!  While she didn't like it, she didn't know how to approach the offending artist.  My advice was to either go to the promoter or approach the artist directly and confront her!  If they don't have your permission - they shouldn't be using your patterns or designs.  By not confronting them, we are condoning their actions. Again, it is up to the originating artist to confront them.

I did a workshop several years ago and explained explicitly that the pattern could NOT be used for any purpose other than personal use.  At the very next show I was at (my own show), there was one of the girls there that had taken the workshop.  When I approached her table, I noticed she quickly moved toward the far end of it and stood in front.  She had gone home and made items from the workshop pattern and set them out to sell!  When I queried her - the answer was that "she didn't think I'd mind if she just made a few".  I did mind, and gave her the option to either remove them from the table or pack EVERYTHING on her table and leave.  She's never done another of my shows, and I've never missed having her.  If she copied my work, she'll copy someone elses.  I still keep a close watch on her website and e-bay listings to see if she tries to sell my design again.

If you see what you think is a copy of someone else's work, notify the original artist directly, and let them handle it.  I think the offender will pay much more attention if the know they've been caught by the person whose work they are copying.



sarahjane Brisbane
Posts: 2,951

You are right Krista there are some great points in Luanns post...after all if we don't defend our own work then who the way I guess I must have slept through all the excitement!!  bear_grin

K P Bear K P Bear
Posts: 386

I agree with all of the above. We have to look after our own creations and if we see some one or hear of some one copying with out your say so, take action and seek out the person that is copying your patterns.
Lena 10.gif

Stitch SanguineCreations
Posts: 395

When there has been blatant copying,especially as with the class, where the students were asked not to make and sell copys.  I think it's wrong but....

I wonder, how many people have been accused of copying, when in fact they haven't. bear_shocked

Before I make any bears to sell, I'm doing  Nancy Tillberg's 'Teddy Design' course that started on Jan 5th. I've made my own patterns of other animals before, but know I have much to learn on the subject.  I'm already nervous of showing any bears, here, even though I'd not steal anybody's patterns. After all everything I know about teddy's I'm learning from the course and from reading avidly all the tips in the library section of this forum. I'm inspired by artists here and bears/animals I've seen. Maybe by accident, those that have influenced me, will show in my work?? I want to be original, but a teddy by definition is not original.
I feel sorry for anyone who's been falsely accused. The guilty probably don't even feel guilty.  I can't help but wonder how many budding bear artists have been taught by an artist and it shows in their work, and have had to put up with hurtful comments, when they are doing their best to learn what they love and to find their own place and style.

chrissibrinkley Posts: 1,836

Sandy please do not be nervous about sharing your creations. :hug:

We've all had influences and will gravitate to the styles that inspire us.  Not a single one of us came out of the womb with the divine knowledge of how to create a teddy bear.  bear_grin
I have no idea what a bear maker in England is working on and she has no idea what I'm working on, but we could in fact have similar styles and preferences. 

Post pictures of your work, I'm sure it's lovely!

Shari Nova Scotia,Canada
Posts: 1,712

Sandy, you made a very good point and it is something that I worry about as well  bear_sad    I tried to express that on the other topic that Kim has but I think you did a much better job.  bear_original  Please don't be afraid to show your work here, you wil find the artists on this board very supportive  bear_wub

rkr4cds Creative Design Studio (RKR4CDS)
suburban Chicago
Posts: 2,044

We do owe each other to look out for each other. I was on a ferry dock in BC Canada, where artists of all sorts (a 'French Market') operates in the warmer months. Right smack dab in the middle of a landscape artist's booth (good watercolors) was a water color of Anne Cranshaw's Hugging Bear: the back of her head and shoulder with one of her large bears peeking around and 'hugging' her shoulder. It's very distinctive and if you've seen it you remember it.

I just happened to be visiting her home state (across the continent in Maine) took pictures of it and gave her the man's card. I don't know the outcome other than she'd consulted her attorney. 

Copyrights exist the moment any artistic endeavor is put into a tangible form: Anne's many-times-over-trade name logo is copyright protected. And the water colorist had the nerve to sign the back and put © on it! 

It's such a small world; whoever would have imagined that a friend from in between these two edges of No. America would see one's artwork and happen to know that person. Beware if you wish to copy.

K Pawz Guest

Sandy...please show us your work!!! We are all influenced by what we see, and I believe it was Michelle Lamb who said it the best...sorry can't find the exact words right off!!! But there is a big difference from being influenced and taking a purchased patterns making the bear or animal, and calling it your own without giving credit to the patterns designer!!! I see many things that inspire me everyday, but I have no intention of buying the pattern, hounding the artist to sell it to me, or as appauling as it sounds but does happen, purchasing a bear, and taking it apart just to make a pattern!!
The original post was about the use of anothers pattern without giving them credit which happens quite frequently on eBay...

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Share your work with us Sandy!!! bear_flower


lulubears Posts: 280

I just went and looked at Sandy's website.  What a treat!  Did you all know that she has 12 ferrets?  There are pictures of them on her site, and they are so cute, you just want to run out and get one for yourself!

Loved your doodle page, especially the drawing with the ark.  Your needle-felted dragon head is really terrific.   I have to admit to not having as much patience as needle-felting requires.  Give me a sewing machine anyday!

Anyway...this has been a great discussion.


fredbear Fred-i-Bear
Posts: 2,243

Krista, when you have a bunch of woman (men) you are going to get 1001 different opions , some good some bad, but then it is always good to have discussions, that is how we live and learn, as long as we handle them in an adult manner, which unfortunatley sometimes does not happen.
personally I think it is good to sometimes throw something out, let everyone chew on it, and see what gets spit out.

If we could only please everyone then we would live in the perfect world and we all know that is not true.

Its good to have subjects that gets our brain matter on the go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Jare Hares & Bears Jare Hares & Bears
Polo, IL
Posts: 983

I know that there have been several times when mom has had to defend her copyrights and trademarks.
The craft show that we ran was called Holiday House, there was a couple in another local town that had a craft show at the same time and they tried to use the same name claiming that the words, Holiday House, were commonly used terms to describe crafts shows at the holidays. Mom explained to them that they weren't and that she would be happy to have her lawyer explain it to them. That backed them off in a hurry. Their signs were down in a matter of minutes. They wanted to draw off the advertising efforts that we did. Hoping that people would be confused and assume that both shows were the same. That happened with the local historical society as well. They tried to use Holiday Housewalk, that was still too close to our name of Holiday House. It confused and upset many people who came to our show. We even had a couple of ladies that insisted on going upstairs, they never did. Mom blocked the way. After that the historical society changed the name of its event. We still hold the trademark to the name Holiday House.

Stitch SanguineCreations
Posts: 395
lulubears wrote:

I just went and looked at Sandy's website.  What a treat!  Did you all know that she has 12 ferrets?  There are pictures of them on her site, and they are so cute, you just want to run out and get one for yourself!

Loved your doodle page, especially the drawing with the ark.  Your needle-felted dragon head is really terrific.   I have to admit to not having as much patience as needle-felting requires.  Give me a sewing machine anyday!

Anyway...this has been a great discussion.


First let me say, thank you to those who PM'd  :hug: and I promise I will show my um efforts at bear making, once I've finished the design course.

Luann, Thank you for your kind words. My needle=felting efforts are very basic as that's my first effort and the body-less dragon has been left waiting for me to return  and complete him, but he'll have to wait for now.
My first teddy's head,on the same page, has a VERY crooked nose :crackup: , I'm  sticking to making bigger teds, until I've mastered some new skills, then I'll return to the smaller Teds.
Of course I adore my ferrets, and they are a constant inspiration, I'm sure I'll be making a lot of Ferret like Teds.

Bear Hugs,

Dilu Posts: 8,574


A friend of mine in Canada has done extensive research on the copywrite issue.  It is fascinating to hear her speak on the issue, and she has very strong opinions on the subject.  Sadly most of what I know comes from her.  As I am somewhat lazy and happy to learn what she knows rather than read the 6" manual myself.

Many of my outfits are the compilation of pictures from history re: clothing.   The what, why, and how of clothing fascinates me. 

I am barely good enough to look at a dress and figure out how I could do it without actually copying the dress.  When I sewed for myself and others I would buy patterns and it was through working for so many years with the patterns of others more experienced that I learned how to manipulate fabric into doing what I wanted.  It doesn't always work but fortunately it doesn't hurt nearly as much to toss a golly dress or pants or shirt as it did when I guessed wrong on an adult outfit....

Now 40+ years later I use all that I learned on big people clothing for the gollykids.

Am I breaking a copywrite?  No, I don't believe so, and if so whose?  We can't get out of our mind the works we have seen before, or even seen and studied before.  Everything is still in our brain and will always be.

There are only so many ways to set a sleeve.

or gather a skirt.

If I sat down and took someone's dress pattern and used it verbatim I would be copying.  But if I remember that when we did this play at school we did this to the skirt to make it...blahblahblah......then I am not copying.

If I can sit down and measure the hips and waiste and then sketch out the bloomers, I am not copying, even though I do believe that somewhere in this great big world someone else is or has done the very same thing.

Oh, my friend in Canada?  She can take a piece of mohair, and draw out her bear without any patterns-just draw it out on the back and cut and sew.

That blows me away....and since I am lucky enough to have one of her bears that she made this way, I can tell you her work-womanship is outstanding.

One other thought;

To you ladies who were copied and the 'guilty' party tried to hide from you?   She wasn't very comfortable was she?  That I found hopeful, as it indicated there was still a conscience there.  In a time when our world's history where "knock-offs" are something to be proud of I think it is quite exciting to witness a conscience in action.

But, I think I would like to be happy with MY work not happy replicating yours.

Last thought:  I agree this is an important subject to bring up now and then.  We always have new members who want to learn ad do the right thing.

I do not believe EVER that an offending party should be named.  If any of us has a problem with someone, we should contact them personally....Never name names on this forum.  This is neither the place nor the manner for them to learn they made the hit parade on our, uh, BadBearMaker list.

Just food for thought, if we ever venture down this road again...which we will....many infinitum..... :crackup:

gollyhugs to you for sharing


Case in point:  very similar to dresses from the time period....but non the less mine, all mine....i just have to loose a ton to get in it....and shrink to about 10".....

jenny Three O'clock Bears
warwickshire uk
Posts: 4,413

Amen to that Dilu. Having been on both sides of this touchy subject I believe everyone has the right to stick up for themselves...because often it's easy to jump to the conclusion that this person 'copied' me..when in actual fact they didn''s just that inspiration often happens in some kind of inexplicable way where great minds do literally think does happen. To shout 'copyright' every time you see a bear that's vaguely similar or wearing an outfit or carrying a similar accessory is just unnecessary. However, I am not a supporter of copying in any form but we do have to be realistic.

I agree also that we should keep our posts free from naming specific names when making negative comments and also that we should keep clear of  innuendo or 'you know who' remarks, so that by implication others may know who is being talked about or it may cause other members on the list who may or may not be regular contributors to wonder if they are the ones being referred to.

It just creates ill feeling and that can't be good for anyone.

fredbear Fred-i-Bear
Posts: 2,243

I am not coing to copy I am going to CLONE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

that seems to be the new thing in replicating things today !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


sarahjane Brisbane
Posts: 2,951

I really agree with all the posts above but I have to say that when you see something similar it is not always copying. Back at the beginning of the year (2006) I made a bear....from my own pattern etc and he was not published or displayed anywhere...but some months later I saw that another bearmaker (quite well known over here) had made a bear and used his photo in an advertisement. Now this bear was made out of the same mohair as mine and ended up with a very similar look (proportions etc were the same) but there was no way either of us could have copied the other I must admit that I have always been reluctant to do anything with the bear I have made as I have been worried about been accused of copying (especially since I am so new at this) so I guess he will remain part of my own collection, but it goes to show that 'copying ' can sometimes be just a case of great minds think alike.

I'm not talking about obvious copying here where the bears are exactly the same but in cases where there are lots of similarities sometimes it is just a coincidence.  bear_flower

Bearalive Bearalive
Posts: 791

I agree totally with you Sarahjane! It had happened to me too ! It has to do, I think, with the style of bears you like . Like you said great minds think alike.
Bear hugs and Golly smiles
Gladys bear_flower

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