Message to Simple Simon and Co. 1-20-22

This morning Simple Simon and Co. is making our Bullseye pattern free as a pdf download. We are selling our pattern in our online store so this is not good enough for me. And no, they have not been in contact with me.

-12 this morning but in Northern Minnesota where Eric lives the wind chill is -39!

81 thoughts on “Message to Simple Simon and Co. 1-20-22

  1. Jo in Wyoming

    No, no, no!
    My how fast they changed all this when they had so much “ Mom” activity yesterday!

    All you techy, and Facebook folks…..let the facts be known. Swamp them.

  2. Marilyn Miller

    Do you have an attorney friend who might write a rather pointed letter to them indicating the forthcoming legal action should they not make this right by you?

  3. Dena

    This is so wrong. They have gone from bad to worse.
    I am appalled they they don’t even have the courtesy to contact you to say oops, sorry.
    In reading their blog post about the quilt, she talks about lying to get access to a long arm. That should tell everyone where they are coming from and what their foundation is.
    I am so angry that this has all occurred.

    1. Janet Orr

      I also was appalled on that story they told about saying they knew how to use a longarm but didn’t have a clue. That is a very expensive piece of equipment to mess around with when you have no idea what you are doing. Shame on them for everything!

  4. Diane from NC

    BRRR…that is way too cold for my old bones. I remember growing up in the midwest (MN, WI) and didn’t know how cold it really was. After moving to TN for college, I don’t think I could ever go back to the “tundra”. My heart still longs for the midwest…but my body loves the warmer temps in TN & now NC.

    1. Cinders from SWMinnesota

      Our spring, summer and autumns are still welcoming if you don’t care for the winter! I think those of us who stayed just take it in stride and stay inside a lot!

  5. Nancy

    I know it will be hard but I hope you keep pushing them. (It could be a long battle.) It is deplorable that they ignore you and then make your pattern free.

  6. Leslie from Maryland

    Yes, do keep on them. Maybe have your lawyer call them? That usually gets their attention…. So sorry this is happening.

  7. Ginny Upstate SC

    Them making it free is even worse than them selling it, that is taking money out of your pocket!
    Al’s niece lives near Eric but they are used to cold weather, they lived in Alaska and northern Montana for most of their life. I’ll stay in SC where cold is having to slip shoes on to feed the birds!

  8. Jan from TN

    At least they aren’t trying to make money off of it. But I agree with the others, time to threaten with a attorney with cease and desist or……

    Good luck! And brrrrr…..🥶 for you, Rick & all the animals. Stay warm. 🔥

  9. Diane Bauer

    Wow, no, that is not IK. That’s them giving away your intellectual property!!! Sounds like time for an attorney. I’m so sorry. What a hassle.

  10. Luci in Georgia

    They seem to be thumbing their nose at you by making the pattern free. It takes money away from you, either way they do it. Perhaps they will only listen to legal action. I am very sorry for all your trouble.

  11. Shirley from Oregon

    Is there a BBB near them, or give bad review on a Yelp site. I would notify Attorney General in the state they are in to contact them.

  12. Elaine Nixon

    From bad to worse. I just read her justification on Facebook. The ethics of it are all wrong. Would have been so easy to say I was wrong and be done with it instead of spreading all this angst. Unfortunately business today seems to be do whatever it takes to justify the bottom line and has nothing to do with truth,values, and the common good. Deep breath Mary, some of us still know and value the good, and you are good.

  13. Connie from PV Ks

    How about another mouse story to lighten the mood.
    My grandmother Mollie Layton taught school in Leroy Kansas in the early 1900s. She had students from kindergarten through 8th grade in a tiny one room school house. Her day started early as she had to get the fire started and the room warmed up for the kids. She was fresh out of teacher training and more enthusiastic than anything else. She told me that the 8th grade boys were all bigger than she was so discipline could be a problem. One cold morning just as class started, she felt a strange itch up her leg. It started by her ankle and slowly traveled up her shin. By this time grandma knew something was wrong so she started hollerin and hopping around. The 8th graders grabbed the logs for the fire and started beating them around her legs. Meanwhile grandma reached down and grabbed the intruder that was tangled up in her skirts and held on for dear life. The kids finally got her to calm down enough to let the creature go. She slowly released her grip and a dead , slightly squashed mouse fell out of her bloomers. She had squeezed the poor thing to death. I can only imagine what gunk must have been all over her bloomers

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Connie from pv ks- oh, yuck! What a story! I went to a one room schoolhouse for kindergarten and even rode a horse to school with my brother Jim – I can see your story clearly! Haha!

  14. Gayle Lacey

    Definitely NOT okay! Schemers at best. Come on Simple Simon, it’s time for the legal team to solve the “situation” (I thought it was entertaining they referenced their copyright infringement actions on their FB post as a situation!). Mary, do you have a Cousin Vinny in New Jersey you can call?!?! 1-800-ATTORNEY!

  15. Jan Hebert

    Yes, time to get attorneys involved. Hopefully it won’t come down to that. I can’t imagine that kind of cold! We’re supposed to get down to 6 degrees I think tomorrow and I’m dreading that! Especially since my poor rooster’s wattles have quite a bit of frostbite already. I’ve been taking him inside at night when it is really cold trying to avoid more damage. He sits in a dog crate, crows around 3 am. Then again around 5… so he’ll be inside tonight. I know I’m crazy but I feel so guilty about it. The other rooster has a tiny bit of damage on his comb but none on his wattles. This poor guy must have dipped his into the water when taking a drink and it froze there, damaging the tissue. Maybe I can find someone down in the south who wants a nice rooster! Ha! Stay warm everyone! Jan in MA

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jan H – poor guy! I’d take him into my heated barn if I were closer! Tribe daughter’s feet must hurt because she sits most of the time – I’ll just hate to do away with her if she loses her feet!!!! Argh!!!!!

  16. Susie from TEXAS

    Suggestion…perhaps RILEY BLAKE DESIGNS should be informed ASAP as to what one of their “designer company’s” (IE: Simple Simon & Co.) has done, as this is a reflection on their business reputation as well.

    We live in the 🇺🇸 where copyrights are protected by law!

    Susie from TEXAS

  17. Charlotte Shira

    Oh no! That is definitely worse!
    So sorry it is so cold in your area. It gives me goosebumps thinking about it.

  18. Launa

    Hope Simple Simon gets what they well deserve… creeps that they are! Legal action and banned from internet!
    29o here earlier…light snowing now. Am thankful for all the wood my husband and family cut last summer before the Forest Fire got too close to us! A frightening experience!

  19. Kathy in western NY

    Wrong wrong wrong, ethically and morally as a designer. They were the ones who hit the publish button on their post not being truthful saying about using a long arm machine before which shows me their standards are not whom I would support. And now offering it for free. It all sounds like one fib upon another fib by saying they never heard or have seen it before. This will spread around the quilting world.

    1. Susan from Michigan

      Has anyone looked at their free pdf to see if it’s word for word the same as Country Threads pattern?

  20. Cinders in SWMinnesota

    I hadn’t heard of Simple Simon and Co before yesterday, they have a lot of followers, but they are frivolous on the understanding about copyrights, etc. I did not think anyone said anything nasty to them, just the truth about the Bullseye Quilt. I wouldn’t let this go. You have connections too.

  21. Lorraine

    This sounds like a copyright lawyer should get involved. This is unbelievable that they won’t even respond to your note.

  22. Judy in Oregon

    Attorneys are expensive so that is not necessarily a solution. They have designed a few lines of fabric for Riley Blake. I would consider sending Riley Blake a message and letting them know what their designers have done. Maybe they can get through to them about copyright laws. While it isn’t necessarily a RB problem it could become that if more people knew they had designers willing to steal from others. Yes, let’s just call it what it is. I can’t help but think this is not the first time they have done something like this. Maybe just the first time they got caught. It makes me wonder how many other patterns they have sold that were designed by someone else.

  23. MartyCae

    You think they would have got the message yesterday. I will be contacting Riley Blake as they are a good company and maybe they will put the pressure on. Of all the nerve ……………..

  24. Ann in PA

    I agree with all the comments. To offer someone else’s pattern for free is a double insult. I can’t believe that they are arrogant & not embarrassed & remorseful. Time for us to contact Reilly Blake & Martingale. All professional quilters should be concerned with their behavior. It just not acceptable or legal. 😡
    Time for more Hazel stories. 💗🐾🙏🏻

  25. Sharon Lowy

    That STINKS! I know it happens as it happened to my local quilt shop. That is just not nice and I am so sorry it happened to you.

    PS love your Colton and so happy he is doing better.

    Hugs from Illinois,
    Sharon

  26. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

    Oh Mary, I cannot believe that Simple Simon thinks that is a solution to theft of a pattern. Good grief, are they that ignorant?

    Mary, is there anyone in your church who is a lawyer? Sometimes, a pointed letter on attorney letter head gets attention pretty quickly. If there is an attorney, I would ask him to write to Simple Simon and spell out exactly what they need to do. For example, 1) QUIT selling AND giving away YOUR and Connie’s pattern, 2) Contact their accountant and figure up how much they have made off your pattern 3) Send a check to you and Connie for the proceeds from your pattern. 4) Write on their Facebook page that yes, they DID steal your pattern and sell it on their web site as their own. and 5) anything else you and the attorney can think of. Can you tell my dad was an attorney? I worked for him in the summers and learned a lot.

    Since I can’t subscribe to The Goat Gazette any longer, I would be happy to give the cost of a subscription to you and Connie to help cover the cost of the attorney. Maybe other bloggers would too? If you have everything all spelled out, it shouldn’t take too long to have a secretary type up a letter and send it to them.

    Hang in there, i am hopeful this will be resolved in your favor.
    Take care in the cold:) It’s 21 here.

  27. Sandy

    Hi Mary, l too have left message at Riley Blake , let’s hope they take notice. Off to see lawyer to start sale of my house so we can build new one in Miramar, the adventure continues! Best wishes from Sandy

  28. Diane etc.

    PS Would someone post on this blog what was said by Simple Simon on their Facebook page? Thanks:)

    1. Sheila in WI

      Here you go, Diane.
      “Today we were accused of stealing a pattern that was written over 20 years ago.

      Until today we had never heard of the quilter, their site, or their patterns.

      But, after receiving a slew of threatening messages we did a quick google search to find that indeed our quilt looked like that quilter’s pattern…and that both of the quilts looked similar to dozens of other tutorials, patterns, and downloads found on the internet.

      The PDF in question came from a tutorial written and posted on our blog 9 years ago after a trip to a quilting expo where we saw a variety of beautiful ragged and bullseye quilts. It has remained on our blog ever since.

      After an onslaught of vicious comments, emails, and messages accusing us of being something we are not, we have removed the pattern in question as a paid PDF pattern.

      Our mission at Simple Simon and Company has always been to create an atmosphere of caring, compassion and sanctuary through stitching but today we have felt more hate and ugliness than we have felt in all of our 15 years of curating our little corner of the internet.

      While we are moving forward and continuing our mission we ask that the threats and harassment (to ourselves, our business, and our families) stop.

      They are unwarranted and untrue.

      To those of you who have been on this journey with us for all these years, thank you for your love, kindness, and support.”

  29. Jean

    Keep on them Mary. This is so unacceptable. If people don’t try to correct the wrongs in our world it becomes a cesspool!

  30. Nilene Thompson-Finn

    From bad to worse. They won’t make $$ from it, but offer it free so that you won’t either. BS! I am heading over to BUY the pattern from your website, even though I own the book! And to say that we threatened their families? What a load of crap. They’re just too arrogant and entitled to realize their mistake, but I hope that perhaps in their hearts they know they got caught for stealing. I guess a lawyer should get involved now. It truly is Copyright Infringement and it shouldn’t be allowed to blow over. You and Connie have deep connections in the quilting world, now might be the time to ask for help.

    Sunny and 60° here in San Diego. Come visit us sometime.

  31. Deborah Smith

    Have you thought of contacting eBay, if that’s where your patterns are being sold?
    Would it be worth it to get a lawyer?
    We are all with you…you go girl!

  32. Nilene Thompson-Finn

    Mary,
    I just spoke with my husband, who deals with International Computer Standards. He points out.

    1). If you or Martingale, as the copyright holders are aware of any Copyright Infringement and choose to do nothing, you can loose the Copyright. As an example, this is the reason Happy Birthday is in the public domain, as the songwriters didn’t pursue infringement.
    2). You could ask a judge to issue an injunction right now to force them to take the pattern down while legal proceedings are sorted out.

    I know this comes at such a terrible time for you. You have SO much on your plate, but perhaps Martingale’s Legal Department can step up and get the ball rolling for you and Connie. I would think the entire quilting community would welcome such a case!

  33. Arrowhead Gramma

    In my opinion, you need to hand this matter over to Martingale the publishers of the book with the pattern in it. Their Legal Department needs to send Simple Simon and Company a letter putting them on notice as to their infringement of your 1999 Copyright of the pattern.

    I read their post on this matter and felt that they were truly unfair and defensive with their feelings about the comments made on your and Connie’s behalf. That alone was enough that I would never purchase a pattern or anything they were involved in. It appeared that they had no clue to the long standing relationship Country Threads has had with so many of us through your shop and patterns, nor how well respected you are in the quilting world. JMHO.

    Take care, stay warm and continue to be strong.

    1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

      Very good points, Arrowhead Gramma! Let’s hope Martingale can use their muscle to rectify this in Mary and Connie’s favor!

  34. Liz

    Wow I’m so sorry 😞 makes me so sad that others are not respectful of copyright. First to sell your pattern under their name then to give it away is not right. You gals have worked so hard for many years.

  35. Rita in Iowa

    Mary and Connie it blows my mine what is happening with the pattern and their response. Let those who are willing to help you figure this out do so. With word getting out in the end they will be the ones who are sorry.
    Stay safe with the cold.

  36. Judye

    Martingale should want to pursue this as Simple Simon and Company is also taking away profit from both of you. Copyright is there to protect this!
    So many things in our society now days is driven by the almighty dollar. Sorry this is happening to Connie and Mary.
    Windshields in Minnesota today too cold!

  37. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy

    I received a reply from Martingale. They thanked me and said upper management at Martingale is aware of the situation. Good. Let’s hope they intervene.

  38. Debbie

    How can they possibly think that it’s ok to give your pattern away for free. I just don’t understand the way people think anymore.
    I’m so sorry that you and Connie have to deal with this.

  39. Cathy in IN

    Unfortunately for you & Connie I don’t think Simple Simon is smart enough to know what kind of doo-doo they have stepped in. I believe the only thing they will understand is a strongly worded letter from an attorney. Martingale should be willing to help with this as they have a stake in it as well. I wouldn’t hesitate to contact Riley Blake either. As we know word of mouth can make or break & I don’t think they would like their name sullied by association.

    Best of luck.

  40. Carmen Montmarquet

    All I can say is SHAME ON THEM! I hope this gets resolved quickly as Simple Simon’s name is MUD! Hang in there and know all your followers are rooting for YOU & CONNIE!

  41. Theresa in Illinois

    HI Mary
    so sorry for your troubles today on the bulls eye pattern. I hope Simple Simon recognizes there part in all of this and does the right thing and removes it from their site. Martingale should get involved on your behalf as they are the publisher.

  42. Louise K.

    “Until today we had never heard of the quilter, their site, or their patterns.”

    My 2 cents…..She’s in the business side of the quilting world and never heard of Country Threads???
    I find that hard to believe.

    And when she saw all those ragged and bullseye quilts at that show, it didn’t cross her mind that SOMEONE had designed them?

  43. Rosie Westerhold

    Oh. My. GOODNESS!! That company has gone from bad to worse. I found it quite interesting that I could no longer see the post on FB that I originally saw after Mary pointed out what happened. Or else I just missed it. As someone else said above, I don’t think Simple Simon realizes what kind of doo-doo they have stepped in. We will FLOOD social media as your WARRIORS, Mary🔥🔥🔥!!

  44. NancyTD

    Thanks Shelia for sharing the Simon and Company post. They really need to hear from an attorney . Never heard of Country Threads— they need to learn a lot! Copying others work to make money is not right.

  45. Polly Perkins

    keep after them! FREE PDF is not okay. They have no rights to this pattern and it interferes with your sales. The nerve of some people amazes me.

  46. Betty Klosterman

    Mary, I’ve been catching up on the Simple Simon copyright violation. It was very interesting to read the piece they put on Face Book.
    From the back yard arguments, to the corporate boardrooms, to the heads of state all over the world: They all run on FAKE OUT. If they can run the biggest fake out, they win. It is so obvious, although they might not admit it.
    It is time to speak softly and carry a big stick. A copyright attorney. Get them in the pocket book and they will have to stop. They are taking advantage of your design and will continue to make money — the most popular way of using other’s ideas — until you hit them with the big stick. This could cost big money, but it would cost them big money, too. That is the only thing that will stop them, not an unknown quilter from Garner, Iowa, who they could care less about.
    This is what you will have to do if you want to stop them. They won’t pay the least bit of attention to you otherwise.
    And I’ll be happy to contribute to your defense fund!!!!! Go get them, girl.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Betty – thank you for your advice – I would need to find a copyright attorney first off and I live in the middle of nowhere, remember?

      1. Betty Klosterman

        It’s a small world. I’d call a local attorney and ask where you would start. They would know more about these things than we do. Maybe they could start, too.
        I’m thinking that a good stiff letter explaining the situation and maybe scaring the heck out of Simon might be all you would need. I’m sure they would not want a good law suit against them.
        I don’t really know anything about these things, but there may be an easier way.
        They have to learn there are Copyright laws for reasons.
        I don’t remember the name on the book, but I wouldn’t think they would like the publicity either. You have to get their attention. I wouldn’t have any nasty comments, just the facts of what they are doing isn’t legal.
        Betty in Rapid City

        1. Betty Klosterman

          I just thought of something somebody else wrote. Go to the Attorney General of Iowa. They may have some ideas on what you could do. Might be a good place to start.
          Betty in Rapid City

  47. Michele Miroff

    You’re absolutely correct. Stealing is stealing.

    Apologize for some of the late responses.

  48. Teresa

    Seems like Simple Simon & Co is banking that you won’t pursue legal action. Perhaps have a conversation with an experienced business lawyer and discuss your options. That’s probably going to cost you a few hundred dollars but at least you’d have learned advice and can go from there. It really sucks that these people are taking advantage of you and Connie and first selling your intellectual property and now giving it away. 😡🤬🤬

  49. Joy in NWest iowa

    Hi! What is the deal, they should remove it from their website! It’s your pattern with a copyright! Why should hey give it free! Ugh!
    Out wind was in the south this morning. Made it feel horrible! No sun here today, which made it feel really cold! Brr. Our kitties didn’t even want to come to the feeding spots! They do not like wind either! I would like to have that cat housing system for the feral cats. I would keep them warm.
    I sewed a little today. I’m working on a block of the month. It has been fun!
    Hubby has macular degeneration and had to have a shot this afternoon but I opted to stay home! Too cold and my back is really giving me pain. I’m so ready for surgery!
    Hope you get this simple Simon outfit fixed! Nasty!

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