Why? 1) Because I use other people's patterns and 2) I sell the stuff I make. So I have a deep interest in the legalities of it.
A lot of pattern writers forbid others from selling the stuff that is made from their patterns. Some even go to the extreme of charging to be able to sell the items made aka a "cottage license".
A good example of this is Debbie Stoller. She authored the famous book "Stitch and Bitch, The Happy Hooker". Her pattern for the Fat Bottom Bag is awesome, however many people soon found out upon contacting her that she does NOT want the bags made from her pattern sold. RIDICULOUS! Like she can stop millions of people from selling them and legally she can't. She wrote the pattern yes, but that is where the copyright stops.
That's right, in a nutshell the copyright of a pattern stops with the pattern. It does not carry over to works made from the pattern! No pattern writer has any claim over what you make (at least here in the US, if you live outside the US your laws may be different).
What you CAN'T do is take their pattern instructions and sell it off as if you had written them. This is against the law and can get you in deep dog doo! And more than that is HIGHLY immoral!
If you are a pattern writer, I can understand that you work really hard to write those patterns (I've done a few of my own), however you have no legal leg to stand on should someone go against your wishes and sell what they make, and you were to find out about it.
If you don't want the stuff made from your patterns to be sold, simply don't share the pattern...ever, in any way and you won't have to worry about it. Of course then you won't get any money if you don't sell your patterns.
Do I think it's nice to ask a pattern designer for permission to sell your works? Sure, is it necessary? Absolutely not! And even if they say no, you are not bound by that no.
To read more about this: www.tabberone.com/Trademarks/C…
I never quite understood this either; where exactly the line is legally drawn. I've always seen other sellers requesting that customers not sell the works made with said pattern, so I do the same thing for mine. Most people comply, simply in respect of the seller, but when you put it like that, it does sound silly: who's going to stop them?
It's not like I have requests for crocheted products coming out of my ears and I'm worried someone will steal my customers away. I'm seriously considering going through all of my patterns and changing that.
I think we can change these unfounded standards and help other crafters to better understand the copyright laws that come with a pattern.