Copy Cats

Copy Cats!

Ok, so I have a little personal rant that I need to get off my chest today, and as this is my blog I have finally realized that I can write whatever the heck I want!

So the other day I had a call from the director of a fashion wholesaler interested in me supplying them with some designs. Fantastic, great!, some new work has landed on my lap and it’s fab because I would love to expand my fashion portfolio further and see my designs in UK fashion boutiques. He explains all about the company, sounds like a nice enough man, I’m made up. Then comes something along the lines of this-

” If I find a print that I like from the high street, for Example in Wallis, or House of Fraser or wherever, can I send you the print and get you to copy it but change as much as we need to so as not to get in legal trouble?”

WOW. I knew there were people like this out there but didn’t know they actually rang designers up and came out with it! You would think that sort of thing would be kept in house right?! So I politely declined and said that I would not be prepared to do that but if he wanted to send me a brief for a particular style I could create my very own designs from scratch (from my very own artwork using my very own skills!). You would think he would be slightly embarrassed at this response but he proceeded to dig his hole even deeper…. ”But I spoke to a solicitor a few years ago who said that you only need to change something 10% then you can get away with it.”Again I declined and I left him with the quotation for new artwork. Surprisingly I never heard back!

I wonder if he is going to ask a designer to divide the copied design by 10 and then just change that part?. I wonder if he thinks I have spent years in education developing my skills and improving my craft just so I can cut and paste in Photoshop? and finally yet most importantly, I do wonder if he thinks I would like to risk all that and potentially destroy my reputation and business for a measly sum of money?

He did however explain to me that everyone does it and that it is in fact the reason why you see the same prints on the high street all the time. So  I would like to finish with a little quote which I think you will all agree is quite a good fit for this man and for all copycats out there-

“Right is right even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it.”
― Augustine of Hippo

Rant over, better out than in! Please tweet the link to the post if you agree!