The law regulates the Copyright is recognized by 196 countries in the world


Why you cannot re-sell a needlework design that you have bought in electronic format (eg. pdf)

1. A Digital File that is being distributed is being REPRODUCED.  

2. The Copyright Owner is the only one that has the right to REPRODUCE a copyrighted work, or to prepare a derivative work.

3. The First Sale Doctrine applies to those works such as videos, books, etc. where copies were legally purchased. In the case of a Digital File, these are reproductions of original copyrighted works, and so the Copyright Owner is the only one that has that right to reproduce them.   



+ You CAN lend, trade, sell or donate any pattern that you own, once you have purchased it, but remember, you ONLY have the right to do that with the original physical copy that you paid for. 


+ You CAN take a picture of your stitched piece and post in on-line to show off your beautiful work.  You should also post the full name of the piece, the copyright symbol and name of the copyright holder or publisher nearby to help protect that image on-line.  


+ You CAN combine elements from published designs, change colors, fibers and even stitches when making items for your own enjoyment or as gifts.


+You can donate the finished products (needlework, knitting, quilts, craft items, etc) to a worthy cause such as a bazaar or charity auction.  You may even sell the finished piece as long as the item is not being mass-produced for sale or object of a regular ( in time ) sell .


+ You CAN share a love of your hobby on-line by sharing links, information, tips & tricks, pictures of your finished projects, just not illegally scanned designs.  Please help protect the Hobby industry by doing your part to uphold and respect copyrights.  It is the LAW! 



- You CANNOT make a copy for yourself and loan the original to a friend.  Wait until you are done and loan them the actual leaflet/chart/pattern.  

- You CANNOT share a scan electronically or post any pattern to the internet that you did not create yourself.    


- You CANNOT change elements or incorporate parts of other copyrighted works into a new work and publish it, sell it or distribute it as your own work. 


- You CANNOT mass produce any item from a single pattern for sale without the express permission of the copyright holder OR without negotiating a manufacturing or licensing agreement with the person who created the design / pattern / leaflet or its publisher.   


- You CANNOT be protected by claiming 'fair use' or 'for educational purposes' when reproducing copyrighted patterns without permission ,  whether or not you make a profit from sharing a copy does not matter. 




FAQ ( by Ellen Maurer Stroh - )

Q: What is a 'free' pattern ?
A: This is a pattern a designer gives for free downloading. The design itself is - of course - copyrighted and the sole property of the designer. The copyright law applies to the 'free' charts in all points.

Q: May I sell a finished cross-stitch piece of a AAN design?
A: This is acceptable but only in small quantities (no more than 3).
Ideally, pieces should be sold for Charity or given as a gift.  


Q: May I sell a used pattern?
A: Yes, the original pattern may be sold. as long as no copy of the design is kept.


Q: May I trade a used pattern? [Trading means exchanging no money]
A: As a general rule, yes, patterns may be traded.
Trading is allowed for originals only. You can not trade (send) a copy and keep the original.  


Q: May we donate a used chart?
A: If the orignal is donated, yes.


Q: May I share a pattern from the free download area with a friend who doesn't have access to the internet ?
A: As a general rule: No. You can ask the designer for permission and most designers will not refuse your request.


Q: Please define an "exchange" featuring AAN Designs [Round Robin, Group Project]
A: All variations of the chart must stay with the original owner.


Q: May I change an AAN pattern?
A: Changes are allowed for personal purposes only.
Changed patterns may not be published in any way, nor claimed as "own" design.
The designer can not be held responsible for changed patterns (such as different color combinations, added text, etc.)


Q: May I copy a purchased pattern?
A: Working copies or enlargements are not allowed but tolerated by most designsers for personal use only.