Monday, 16 March 2020

Crafting for charity

Crafting for charity and copyright - which patterns can we use?

We love to hear from people who are interested in donating their work to made4aid. Sometimes people ask us to suggest sources for designs or patterns they could use, particularly for textile items - knitting, sewing, crochet - and it is important to recognise that there may be copyright issues in selling work made with someone else's pattern. 

*  Some designer patterns or pattern books will specify that the patterns should only be used for personal use - ie. things for you, family, friends - not for sale.  This is to protect the designer from their patterns being used commercially, without permission, for other people to gain income.

*  Some designers and websites provide their patterns copyright free, or say that they permit use of the patterns either for charity purposes or for selling.  (e.g. knitted designs by Jean Greenhowe and Alan Dart).  
This is often in the 'About' section, or FAQs, on a website.  Some will give permission if you contact them.  

*  There are many 'generic' types of design (eg. for a baby cardigan), and vintage designs, which are slightly different versions of a standard pattern type which is in the public domain, and not a unique and copyrighted design.   There are also lots of websites that provide patterns free of copyright, or which can be sold for charity fund-raising.  

If you are making items to donate to made4aid, and you are using a designer pattern you have bought, do please check the small print for any copyright statements, and check that the copyright does not prohibit use for selling purposes.

Below there is a list of links for knitting patterns that are copy-right free, or free to use for charity. Many individual designers (eg. on Ravelry) will also give permission on their profile, or if asked via email. 

Do please let us know if you have other sources we could add to this list.

  • Alan Dart Open use of Alan's patterns for charity, but note that this excludes patterns for licensed characters (eg. Disney or similar). Free and/or low-cost patterns.
  • Jean Greenhowe's website invites people to use her patterns to make things to raise money for charity. The website includes some free patterns.

    There is more information here about donating to made4aid - we welcome lots of different kinds of items, not only textile items like those above. Do get in touch if you want to get involved or if you have any questions:

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