Did you plagiarize that quilt?
A brawl broke out last winter in an online quilter's group when one crafter shared her just-finished project and called it her "shimmer" quilt. The problem was, "Shimmer" was the name of a meticulously engineered pattern authored by an Australian designer. The pattern was available at a popular crafts website, but the proud quilter had seen the photo, figured out the design on her own, and then shared the result as a "Shimmer. "You ripped off the designer. "Not possible, as 'Shimmer' is merely a contemporary version of the classic block 'Hen and Chicks,' " shot back an equally incensed bee of buzzing quilters. Courtesy was restored only when the designer herself weighed in, asking that her copyrighted name and design be used only for quilts made with her copyrighted pattern. A crush of quilters bought the pattern and two weeks later, a new crop of Shimmer quilts bloomed. A new group, Real Stitchers Don't Steal, has just formed to fight off design plagiarism by Eastern European hackers who apparently have nothing better to do than take high-resolution photos of completed cross-stitch and needlepoint projects and... That cuts the original designer out of the $10 to $15 fee she's entitled to for selling each copy of the design. For the record, materials to complete a cross-stitch or needlepoint project can easily top $100. Trimming the designer out of the picture doesn't save much. I found a design online that will be fun and easy to make. The designer is long gone, so permission is moot.