Response, 6-16-23

Thank you, Rosie, for bringing this to my attention.

30 thoughts on “Response, 6-16-23

  1. Diane and the gang in Central Ohio

    Me, too. It took a while! Mary, did you decide not to share the story about Nick Schifrin and his quilt?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Diane – I wondered if it may have been too confusing – do you still have your email? I would never be able to find it again. I’ll try if you can resend to me.

      1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

        I will look for it. Not sure if it was deleted after too many days.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Rosie – I’m not sure it paid off – she says she’s never heard of Country Threads. Right now I’m just sick of it all. I have so much on my plate, it’s hard to think beyond that.

  2. Diana in Des Moines

    WOW! So glad they made this right. Restored my faith in mankind today.
    Happy Friday, Mary. Now if we could get your car grill back…..

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Diana – I must not have followed up on everything – why do you say “they made this right”?

  3. Kim from TN

    This is great news and I’m glad they were able to make this right by you.

  4. Rita in Iowa

    Mary you can move on now. With technology it’s so easy to get ideas and think it’s ok to take credit where it shouldn’t be taken. Glad things are better.

  5. Patricia E Campbell in AZ

    I’m not really sure what this actually means, to be honest…

    1. Janice Brown

      Ditto on Patricia’s comment . . . . I am not sure what this means either.

  6. Sandy

    Hi Mary, l think we pressured them to admit copying, but l don’t see any apology, how long will we see this on their page l wonder?

  7. Marsha

    I am a little confuse at to what we are pointing fingers at? When I search bullseye quilt, many many thing pull up and your pattern is NOT one. There are many videos and free patterns out there that still do not mention you in them. Until I heard by mouth what has taken place , I did not personally know about you guys or your pattern, but have in fact seen this block technique used by many different people in many different ways. Is their quilt the same size as yours? Is there circles cut the same way as yours? Are they using the exact same measurement as yours, layout as yours, borders as yours? If these are not ALL a yes then I do not believe there is a copyright issue, though I am NOT a copyright lawyer. Many people us the log cabin block to make a quilt but is it stated in their pattern whom originally came up with the technique and block? Many people do a rail fence quilt and SEVERAL different patterns to buy and free pattern to follow , but I do not see any talk about that? If a pattern is not step by step copied, fabric requirements, layout, border, size, Ect. then how is it copy right? Did you copyright the “technique” to make the actual block and that is what is being copyrighted? I’m just not following, only because whoever did make up the “technique” for the log cabin and pinwheel and rail fence aren’t trash talking those who are demoing these? Next, are these people your accusing even know you existed? And finally , as stated above in your response, you SAW this quilt that was NOT originally yours, was inspired and made a pattern? Exactly what several others are doing with the block?… just food for thought.

    On a lighter note all the puppies are adorable.

  8. Rosie Westerhold

    Looks like I stirred up a hornet’s nest. Log Cabin Quilt Blocks, Rail Fence Quilt Blocks, Pinwheel Quilt Blocks, Lemoyne Star Quilt Blocks, Church Dash Quilt Blocks, and so on, are all in the “public domain.” They is no copyright in effect for these very traditional blocks. No one “owns” the right to make these blocks. People are free to make these blocks however they want with no consequences. A pattern writer can copyright a specific pattern or technique. The words and technique to make something are what is copyrighted.

    What people on THIS blog are enraged about is that Mary and Connie published a book in the 1990s called Quilts from Aunt Amy. And the Bull’s Eye Quilt is on the COVER. Many, many people are longtime fans of Country Threads, and we all remember that quilt. It was revolutionary at the time. Raw-edge appliqué? Not measuring accurately? Not cutting precisely? This was NEW and very exciting for us just starting out quilting around that time. The pattern and technique were in a copyrighted book. I’m not positive this is correct (I’m not a copyright lawyer, either), but the copyrighted book stays in effect until 100 years after the person who holds the copyright and/or their heirs have all passed. Seems to me that Mary and Connie are still alive so that copyright is still in effect. Or the copyright is held by Martingale which is now out of business. Not sure about that part.

    Mary’s comments are posted above in HER BLOG. I’m not sure WHERE that is posted, but it was NOT posted BY Two Chicks Quilting. Those are Mary’s words you see above. “I” went back to the Bull’s Eye video by Two Chicks Quilting (which was posted 2 weeks ago), and made an additional comment about the pattern being in a book published by Martingale which Connie and Mary wrote, and said book is on THE COVER of that book. There is another foundation-pieced pattern called Bull’s Eye which comes up when doing a search for Bull’s Eye Quilt Pattern. This a totally DIFFERENT pattern. Connie and Mary’s Bull’s Eye quilt pattern comes up pretty close to the top after that. All the OTHER raw-edge appliqué patterns I see out there were published AFTER Connie and Mary’s original pattern in their book. I’ve also seen other shapes done with the same technique like flowers and apples and pears. The Two Chicks Quilting pattern is SLIGHTLY different in that they use Martelli’s templates to creat the circles, but I believe it was stated in the video that you could use a bowl or just draw them. The technique of sewing around the circle-ish shape and leaving the raw edges exposed, and layering several circles, cutting away the back, and cutting the whole circle into fourths, then re-arranging the parts is virtually identical to Connie and Mary’s original pattern. Did Two Chicks Quilting do this intentionally to “steal” Connie and Mary’s original pattern? Probably not, but I don’t know that for a fact. I think the “issue” is that they didn’t acknowledge Connie and Mary’s original pattern.

    A number of years ago, like 1996 or 1997 (can’t remember when exactly and I don’t have the book near me), my quilting group self-published a book called Row by Row Quilts by The Corny Bunch. We copyrighted our book, but we did not TRADEMARK the phrase Row by Row. The NAME was the catchy thing, and we didn’t think of trademarking that name. Not long after we published that book tons and TONS of books and patterns were published using “ROW BY ROW,” and there was absolutely nothing we could do about because we didn’t trademark that phrase. Our idea was based on Seminole Piecing and Quilting, which is a very old technique. We used their technique and substituted different block patterns which were in the public domain to make our “rows.” It was a new concept as well. We hadn’t seen it done anywhere except in Seminole Quilting. And many OTHER people thought it was a novel idea and made their own versions of “row quilts.” If only we had been thinking back then, and trademarked “Row by Row,” we could all have become very rich quiilters and retired early. HA😱😱😎😎😂😂😉😉!!

    So, I’m hoping this comment clears up some of the confusion. Or I’ve made it much worse now. And I’m sorry if that is the case. Many of us were “pointing fingers” because we are quite protective of Mary and Connie’s Country Threads Quilt Shop. It’s why many of us are following Mary’s blog. We were all unhappy that someone else was using the same name and technique of their Bullseye Quilt Pattern. The same thig happened with Quiltmania magazine (published in The Netherlands, maybe?) who published a quilt in their magazine called Bullseye Quilt. Mary contacted them about using the name of Country Threads pattern without permission, and they printed an apology in their magazine in the following issue. I believe Mary just wants an acknowledgement that Country Threads probably had the FIRST idea of this technique and published it in a copyrighted book. Copyrights are VERY difficult to enforce, though, because of many, many technicalities. Such as how much of the original material is in what is being questioned? How much was changed? Is the wording the same? Is the technique identical? And on and on.

    The same thing is happening in the music industry. There have been several artists sued recently for coming up with lyrics or a melody which resemble a previously existing body of work. It takes money and time to pursue copyright books, music, lyrics, etc. I, for one, would not have the resources to persue something such as a battle over copyright with a large corporation. However, the little person sometimes has to stand up for themselves, and make a stand. And, of course, it’s entirely possible that several different people came up with the same idea for a new quilt pattern around the same time. I’ve seen it happen quite often that 2 patterns were published in magazines or by a pattern designer at around the same time. Did someone “steal” that idea? Probably not; they may have both been influenced by somethig they both saw or read about the same time. Or, more likely, they both came up with the same idea at the same time unbeknown to each other.

    I humbly apologize for stirring the pot and bringing this to Mary’s attention in the first place. I just thought she had a right to know that someone else was using the same name and idea as her original pattern from 1997.

    And, with that, let’s get back to pictures of quilts and pets and the farm and FUN stuff.

    1. Janice Brown

      Rosie, Thank you very much for this explanation. When I saw the photo of the screen text, it just wasn’t clear to me if this text had been published elsewhere and was now being shown here as well, and from reading the reader comments, I don’t think some of the readers clearly understood that either.

  9. Cathy

    It would be nice if Mary would revise her post that accuses this shop of stealing. She had never heard of Country Threads before so she didn’t steal anything.

    1. Gloria S.

      I agree Cathy- and maybe in the future we should all take a pause before assuming the worst of some people we don’t know, accusing them of being thieves. I think a simple phone call or email between the two to discuss the matter privately probably could have cleared up any issues. A little respect from everyone goes a long way.

      1. Mary Etherington Post author

        Gloria – this is Mary – if you’ve been a Country Threads follower for awhile then you know how many times other designers have “used” our Bullseye pattern. Upon searching YouTube I found several more sites also teaching Bullseye. I would not have known about this incident without someone bringing it to my attention. And why is it that you think it’s OK for someone to “use” our pattern as if it’s theirs?

      2. Mary Etherington Post author

        Gloria – a simple phone call? She doesn’t even know who I am! And I suppose that’s my fault? How many times has someone “used” our pattern and didn’t credit Country Threads? Many. I’m guessing all of this notoriety has brought her plenty of potential business from customers who never knew her shop existed. Maybe she should thank me.

  10. Cathy

    Mary, I think Gloria meant that you could have called Two Chicks and handled it privately. Accusing someone of stealing is just not very nice or professional.

    1. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

      Cathy, stealing someone’s work and selling it as your own is what is neither honest, nice or professional. We all know that there are classic blocks out there that are in the public domain, but Mary’s Bullseye block and her unique copyrighted technique for making it, is not one of them. If Two Chicks had bothered to Google the name, they would have seen both Mary’s book as well as her technique, credited elsewhere.
      Not having heard of Country Threads is no excuse. Intellectual property theft is a felony: that is why Quiltmania (published in France) printed an apology and a retraction online and in print when they were made aware that one of their contributors had taken unacknowledged credit for Mary’s intellectual property. If Two Chicks want to market a pattern they did not invent, they need to do due diligence before they do so, otherwise they have to face the consequences of their failure to do so.

      1. Rosie Westerhold

        You expressed brilliantly what I was trying to say. I think someone didn’t do their homework concerning this pattern, and they have STILL failed to acknowledge that Country Threads published the first of this kind of pattern. All the other patterns, tutorials, and videos I’ve seen out there came well AFTER Quilts from Aunt Amy was published. So, what does that tell you? Plus, the owner of TwoChicksQuilting posted on this very blog!! Since that happened, she knows very well how to get hold of Mary! I’ll be quiet now.

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