I started creating reproductions myself after receiving one too many crappy reproductions from other people. They were pretty bad. A waste of good money.
I didn’t want to be in the same boat. In making my own reproductions I saw areas to improve upon and overtime my reproductions have gone from good to great. They take more time to make, but I enjoy the “art” of making each reproduced creation. And I go the extra mile to ensure I’m not violating anyone’s copyrights and trademarks while protecting my own.
Cheap is cheap.
There’s no way around it. There’s a reason present day patterns are costly-printing.
Most often when I run across cheap reproduced vintage sewing patterns it’s because the maker has bypassed printing costs leaving me to:
- piece together pattern pieces as if it were a jigsaw puzzle. Imagine receiving a vintage sewing pattern reproduction that looks like a jigsaw puzzle. For example, the original pattern includes seven pieces and your reproduction of the same original has 16 pattern pieces.
- scale up (risking distortion). Often when using a home printer/scanner if you don’t know what you’re doing or haven’t paid attention to what you’re doing the pattern pieces get re-sized and won’t fit together properly. Because pattern pieces are erroneously sized up or down the pattern is now flawed before you even get started. AND THEN I’ll still need to find a way of printing the correct size pattern pieces from a home printer (usually not an option-even if I’m lucky enough to have a large format printer), or printing from a home printer and piecing together pattern pieces (again…back to the jigsaw puzzle thing) or
- print the pattern through a professional print center (inconvenient and costly).
After considering issues related to sellers bypassing printing costs and transferring headaches (and additional costs) to the seller are additional concerns:
- Dark, grainy and crooked instruction sheets are hard to read of outright unreadable.
- Handwriting and other print sprawled on pattern pieces. Alot of gibberish printed on the pattern pieces is distracting and annoying. Everyone wants to protect their work. That’s fine, but that doesn’t mean a buyer wants a reproduced pattern “over-done” with a seller’s copyright information and self-promotion text sprawled all over the pattern pieces. Obstructions to the pattern’s construction markings (“attach here” or “attach this to that”) are just that-obstructions. Not good selling points and certainly don’t make constructing the garment any easier.
- Copyright violations are unlawful and unethical. No one should remake a vintage sewing pattern that’s under copyright. It’s a clear violation of someone’s copyright and opens the doer up to litigation. In the world of vintage sewing patterns it’s often assumed all old patterns are under copyright. This is a false assumption. Just as it’s a false assumption because pattern manufacturers such as Vogue and McCalls still exist-older patterns they manufactured are under copyright. Bottom line-if you aren’t sure if a sewing pattern is in the public domain don’t reproduce the pattern. If it is then by all means go for it.Consider this:1. Once you make your own version of a sewing pattern that’s in public domain-your version is automatically under copyright (by you). You’re not required to (although there are benefits) formally register the pattern with the U.S. Copyright Office.2. If a sewing pattern is in public domain-guess what-you can’t include the original manufacturer’s trademark and logo on your re-creation! It’s a violation of someone’s trademark and places you in legal jeopardy of being sued.As a buyer I don’t want to purchase a reproduction that violates another person or entity’s copyright or trademark.
- General aesthetics are important. I want a pattern that actually looks professional. One that’s worth my hard earned money. In addition, as a buyer I expect to receive an envelope so that I have a convenient place to store all of the components of the sewing pattern.