Since I mostly use quilting cottons when creating my various sewing projects that I sell on Etsy I suddenly began noticing declarations on the selvage that I am to only use the fabric for "home use" or "non-commercial use". I have been poking around the online world and I am not the first one to be blogging or writing about this.
One of the best sites is Tabberone. It's actually fun to read and they seem to really be on a mission.
A google search turned up this on LegalZoom
May discussions go back and forth about why or why not you should take these selvage statements seriously.
- First Sale Doctrine
- The "first sale doctrine" is the legal doctrine that protects the items that you make from copyrighted fabric and sell. Under the first sale doctrine, a copyright owner can enforce its rights the first time it sells an item. After the first sale, the item enters the stream of commerce, and the copyright owner's control ends. With copyrighted fabric, the first sale occurs when the copyright owner licenses or sells its copyright to the fabric manufacturer. When you purchase the fabric from a fabric store, your purchase is a subsequent sale that the copyright owner cannot control.
Now as a former school librarian who was the designated "copyright police" in her schools, I have learned a bit about books and media and fair use in education. Mostly I have learned to watch out for Disney! I'm almost afraid to type it. But books and CD's and movies and workbooks are a whole different world.
|These guys are the property of the creators. They sold the rights to print the fabric.|
You may buy it and use it for ANYTHING. You may NOT stick it in your scanner and
copy it and print it on your own fabric using any means...like iron on transfer.
There is the licensing of logos, trademarks and original work. Disney can license a fabric company to produce yardage with Mickey's all over it. They can print warnings all over the place BUT if you purchased it from a legitimate source they cannot control how it is used after that. (See First Sale Doctine above)
You may NOT put your items on ebay, Etsy or anywhere and present them as Disney approved items. You MAY and should say that the items are made with Disney licensed fabric but are not associated in any way with the Disney Co.
I searched lots of online fabric sites and I found only one that stated the restriction in the listings. That was Fabric.com. Some say the fabric is licensed but doesn't say how it is to be used it simply seems to be a way to direct the buyer to the fabric. Now I did NOT read every listing but they appear to be consistent.
If you buy fabric online and you intend to use it for your Etsy shop items and when it arrives with this
"warning" what are you to do? You cannot return cut fabric in most cases.
There is this:
I have these two fabrics which I bought at different times and perhaps even from different stores. The orangey red on the left has no "warning" but the one really neutral one on the right does!!!@*&%$!
I cut this stuff up to make these:
I understand Mickey, Ninja Turtles and SpongeBob but this TEXTURE!
WARNING: THIS PILLOW IS MINE! AND DONT YOU DARE TRY TO MAKE ONE. JUST KIDDING
Please leave a comment. I'd love to hear what you think but I do screen the comments so you won't see it right away.