As a blog reader I’m guessing that 99.9% of you know about our Bullseye Quilt from the cover of Quilts From Aunt Amy. Many of you have probably even made a Bullseye quilt.
Last night, about 24 hours ago, a 91 year old follower sent me the following pictures from the current issue of Simply Vintage, a publication of Quiltmania.
It says “Designed, made and quilted by Janine Alers for House of Quilts”
House of Quilts is located in The Netherlands.
I posted this today on Country Threads Facebook page and have been fielding comments all day. This post is for those of you who do not follow us on Facebook.
I am sad, furious and everything in between.
And that’s todays news from the blog about nothing.
Wow. Just wow. I am so sorry. Unbelievable. I have no words.
And all your friends are sad for you and all honest quilters. I’m just glad to know the truth. I learn a lot from your blog, Mary. Don’t ever stop putting the truth out.
Bobby from Maryland
Well, that’s just wrong, and how sad it is that someone steals from a fellow quilter just to make a name for herself. I wonder how those kind sleep at night? Probably better than you, Mary, as you’re angry and they are banking money off your work. Shameful.
I have had intellectual material stolen and repackaged, I know how it feels. Sad it is that so many people find theft so easy and creativity so difficult.
One of the wonderful advantages of globalization and the internet! It will only get worse! It just makes me sick! That quilt you designed is so beautiful and you are so talented! Very sincerely, Nancy K Walker
Oh, Mary, not again! Even stealing the name Amy! It is so wrong, it’s unbelievable there isn’t a way to stop it. I’m so sorry to see it happening again.
Over 45 years ago I took my first needlepoint class and the instructor told us that designers had to change at least one major thing in order to claim ownership of a design. I don’t know what copyright laws say, but the thief in the Netherlands didn’t even change the name of the pattern! Blatant plagiarism.
Perhaps everyone will do as I did and send them an email and ask them to own up to what they did. I googled “House of Quilts Netherlands” and you will find website with a contact page.
Tina – thank you!
Yes. I have made a Bulls-eye quilt and every time I look at it I think of you because it is your pattern and only yours. I really, really dislike those people for what they have done. So mad for you, Mary. Fuming!
So sorry people are stealing your designs. I have your book with the original pattern. I have been wanting to make that quilt for years. I need to bring it to the top of my list. It is a great pattern and the story behind it is interesting.
Dear Mary, I am absolutely sick at heart to learn that the theft of your patterns continues. I would have thought the larger quilting community would respect the creativity and effort that goes into the design process. I guess not. Even if it is correct that only one element of the design needs to be changed in order for someone to claim their work is a “new” pattern, surely it would be appropriate to credit the original idea source. And to use the name ‘Amy’ just makes it hurt more. Where do these people come from? And what would their mothers and teachers say? Remember footnotes and bibliographies? Kris
PS – I’m sending my comments to Janine Alers at House of Quilts tonight. K
This is so sad !! Ian outraged that others have said your original designs are theirs . Cheaters and Liars are everywhere I guess. :(. So sad .
Wow! That is appalling! I have never herad of House of Quilts, but they will be getting a mail from me today, as will Simply Modern.
Sorry, I meant Simply Vintage, of course!
Fiona – Both magazines are associated with Quiltmania.
Hi Mary, l too will be sending an email to this dishonest woman! We all see a quilt pattern or photo we like and make it ,changing colours or setting, but we dint go on the internet claiming that it is original and make money from it. Take care Mary, we all are behind you! Best wishes from Sandy
I just don’t know what to say. What is happening is so disgusting. As soon as I hit the send button here my next email is off to the thief! As a community of quilters we MUST voice the truth! SO sorry for you Mary.
We had a quilt in McCalls quilting magazine, many years ago. It made the cover of one of the Australian magazines, a couple of years later. It was made and designed by some one from Australia. She was “inspired” by a quilt she saw when she was in the US! She even used many of the same fabrics we used. By the way, ours was not on the cover!!
Laura – oh, good grief! Foreigners must think we’re stupid! The two girls who starting selling the Bullseye pattern also said they were inspired by quilts at the Road to California show. Those quilts were Bullseyes! Duh.
It’s crazy. At the time, McCall’s said there was nothing they could do, because they were in Australia.
Mary I can’t imagine the thoughts going through your head after you learned of this. As others have said, that pattern will always be associated with your name for thousands of quilters. I remember how excited I was to find that book in my thrift store after we had made one of the quilts together here on your blog. I wonder about the minds of new designers…..how can they live with themselves but I have been wondering more and more about that in recent years with a lot of dangerous people in the spotlight. Please don’t let crappy imitators ever stop you and Connie from coming up with new designs to share with your dedicated blog readers who support you. And always put your name on any pictures you create as you are the one and only Country Threads !
Kathy – I started looking into that late last night but haven’t got it figured out yet. Of course it wouldn’t have made any difference in this case – I didn’t show Bullseye recently and it was made many years ago – before anyone ever thought of putting names on quilt pictures. But I understand what you’re saying.
Nope no good now as damage has been done. I think of that pattern I know you still need to write directions for and sell on Friday. I am not even going to name it for fear of what will happen with these stealers. Another thing I thought of, do you think the writer Janine Alers was paid for this article so I wonder if she will make any money off this?? I will definitely state that in my email I send to Quiltmania concerning payment and what is owed to you as the designer and not her.
Grrr. I’m sorry, but isn’t there someone on these magazine editorial staffs who check these things before they are published? Just a Goggle search even would bring up prior histories. I know it’s harder to think what to search for but even have these “designers” sign something attesting to the fact that the design is indeed original. I would think that was a mandatory thing to do. I would love to see the entire article to see if she at least mentioned your name as being the “one she saw”. So wrong, just so wrong that people can do this. It’s like plagiarism! Even the same colorway!
I am furious. I remember the quilt market booth you had with all those bullseye quilts hanging . As a then quilt shop owner I was so impressed. Later my employees made me one for my birthday. So sorry and sad.
Suzanne – oh my gosh, I was just thinking about that market, too. What year was that? And I’ll never forget Virginia Robertson who stood in front of our booth and said, “I just love it when the old timers come up with something new!” Where are you from and what was the name of your shop? I miss Quilt Market, do you?
Are you the owner of Quilters Emporium in Stafford/Houston? Love that shop and the friendly people.
I am furious for you….It seems like it is so much worse out there with all the stealing..!! I think A LOT of the quilt world here in the States know that this is a Country Threads quilt…..I agree that I would expect someone on the magazine staff would check these things but it looks like they don’t….
This is just horrible! I also will send a message to House of Quilts and Simply Vintage. I will NOT purchase their magazine! I agree with others….surely they have someone on staff checking for plagiarism, but apparently not! The bullseye pattern will always be a Country Threads pattern in my book!! Love all your patterns! Please know you have a ton of people who love you and will back you up!
That infuriates me. I would write an email to the editor of Simply Vintage with the picture from your book and let them know. Copy the person who stole your design (and design name) as her own. GRRRRRR! 🤬
That is just plain BS! I am furious for you. I, too,will be sending a scathing email to the publisher.
I had to post again! Every Sunday the owner
of Back Door Quilts in Greenwood, Indiana posts a “sewing in my jammies” segment on Instagram. This morning she posted her Bullseye quilt!!! And she gave credit to Country Threads!! I hope you can view it as well….it will bring a smile to your face!
PS…This is the first quilt shop I’d ever heard of….I remember my mother taking a quilt class there almost 50 years ago!!
I just watched it. Cute quilt and yes, so nice she gave credit where it is due!
I join everyone with my disgust at stealing your Bullseye Quilt pattern. And, on top of that, even using the Aunt Amy name. You know it was blatant theft of your design. I sent an email to Janine and to Simply Vintage to express my opinion.
This is just wrong, I can’t believe that someone in the quilting world would do something like this, so sad Mary. Keep designing your wonderful patterns & writing this blog for all of us! We all care about you!
I just sent off an email to Janene at Hose of Quilts. It is so wrong what she did. Such an obvious copy including the name of the quilt! She could have contacted you asking you for permission to submit the quilt to the magazine, but she didn’t, and you may or may not have given permission, but not to have asked makes her a definite thief! My Aunt Amy quilt is one of my favorite quilts I have made. I have always wanted to make another in a more controlled color scheme in contrast to the totally scrappy one I have. I will start cutting for that this week as I think of what has happened to you and how you must be feeling. Thank you for all your designs, and your books and patterns…I own so many!
Kim – funny you should mention making another bullseye because I was thinking the same thing!
Mary, this was a reply to my Facebook comment just now and I’m not sure if you’ve seen it…
“Holly Seaver Melton
copyright laws stated in the Country Threads book on page 1. Don’t need an attorney, here is a page to copy the letter. What Is a Cease and Desist? A cease and desist is a written notice demanding that the recipient immediately stop an illegal or allegedly illegal activity. It may be an order or injunction issued by a court or government agency or a letter from an attorney. A cease and desist order or injunction has legal power.”
She didn’t include the link to the page with the letter though. Here’s a link I found that may be helpful…
It will create the letter for you.
Have you contacted Simply Vintage letting them know it is your pattern.
Oh my gosh! I’ve made 5 Bullseye from your pattern from Country Threads over the years. Also, treasure my copy of Aunt Amy ………..this is one of my most favorite methods to make. Also, follow your wonderful blog. From a Quilter and Animal lover
So so wrong. People are lame!
Your blog is really the best one I read. No pretense, just life. It’s lovely. I hope you continue until it no longer makes you happy.
I can only imagine your anger. I’m sorry that new quilters don’t know the truth. to me that is violating a commandment. Peace Micky
My first thought was “That’s bullsh__”. I am not one to cuss often, but that makes me SOOO mad. As an English teacher ( now retired) and quilter , I have always recognized copyrights! How can that publication and that woman be so brazen as to claim Aunt Amy’s as their own. AND, they didn’t even try to rename it Aunt Myrtle’s or something. UGH! I hate this. I will also contact the magazine and thief! I hope there is something you can do. I bought the book a few years ago when you did the quilt along. I love that quilt! Sooo sorry Mary
What’s the saying, “do the right thing even if no one is looking”. I think that goes without saying and when selling a quilt pattern as if you just designed it is unspeakable. Do these thieves think that there is no one who has made this quilt and seen the pattern by Country Threads. Unbelievable is all I can utter right now. So sorry Mary.
I can certainly understand your anger for someone stealing your design. I’m so sorry that this happened to you. I have never commented before, but I really enjoy your newsletter .
Morals and ethics have no meaning to so many people these days. It is alright to steal. They probably think that you are dead and gone and nobody knows anything about your pattern. It never even occured to them. They are living in Europe, etc, and never even realized that there are a whole bunch of us quilters who are not dead, including you, Mary, and nobody would even notice. And they didn’t think about us old ladies who NEVER forget and dearly love the talented artists that have created and we who happily made all the patterns! They are thinking about making money with their patterns and making their patrons happy. It is a small world, but getting much easier for world-wide communication.
I’m not an attorney, but it has always confused me with thinking it is alright if just a little part is changed? And then this statement is printed on the pattern: “This pattern is protected under the Federal Copyright Laws. No part of this pattern may be copied in any way. Even without money gain, it is unlawful!” The quote is the EXACT statement on the back of a pattern right in front of me. To me that sounds like I can’t even make the pattern? I copied the pattern?????
In the meantime, I’m watching Yellowstone and am laying the cat blocks out on the bed so I can sew the blocks together at Project Warmth on Feb 27! And I love the cats, they have character!! And a ton of colors.
Take care, everybody. Betty in Rapid City
Betty – yes, I’m sure they thought we’d never know – surprise! We aren’t dead yet.
Geez Louise, Mary, they even stole the name of the quilt from the title of your book. People have no shame at all. And shame on Quiltmania for not doing any research to know the pattern was stolen.
I am so sorry you are once again the victim of copyright theft. I believe the US has agreements with the Netherlands that recognize each other’s copyright laws. You might want to contact your publisher to help you prosecute this theft. The problem with these kind of thefts is that they are costly to prosecute so now after I have scrolled through the comments, I am thinking that some very public tribal shaming might be in order. So, folks, if you would like to register your opinion, go to https://houseofquilts.nl/
I am a copyright librarian, not a lawyer, so I know how hard it is to prosecute copyright violations. We are all in your corner!
Susan – thank you! If everybody that comments sends her and Quiltmania an email, they will surely get the idea that they’re wrong. I’ve never been so sure of anything in my whole life.
Mary, this is just thievery, plain and simple. I’m sorry. I love my well used copy of Aunt Amy quilt book. I enjoy reading it over and over.
…….and the saga continues! I guess you should sorta be flattered that there are these copycatters. I thought after dealing with the first time, that would be the end of it. I’m proud to have made mine from the original pattern by it’s original designers!!! And, I’m very unimpressed with theirs!
Pieceful blessings from,
Linda “clooless” K. from Butternut, WI
If you so choose…send a (shame on you!) email to the Country Threads BULLS-EYE copyright “THIEF” at: firstname.lastname@example.org
I have already done so!
Susie Emmons, TEXAS, USA
How can I thank all of you for having my back? I know it has worked!
Quiltmania is an upright publication – very,very surprising.
And they gave it the same name!!