Rugs From Rags, 2-26-23

I thought maybe I should see if Rugs From Rags had been compromised and sure enough here is Rags To Rugs By Lora. I will be the first to admit that this is an age old folk art and not our original design but the frames she is using and selling are the exact same size as ours and look to be Rick’s design from 1997.

I’m not sure if she’s selling a book or just the DVD but she is an excellent marketer. She is marketing all parts of the frames – from plans to rubber bands. The rug, placemat and runner are the same sizes as are in our book.

I’m not sure that twined rugs are her most popular rug – she makes all kinds of rugs and I think her money maker is in the rolls of fabric she sells to make them. She has each rug calculated to the inch of how many strips it will take. Wow! She even has a video of how to tear up a sheet for strips.

She has many how-to videos and she is an excellent teacher although I am waiting to view her dvd on twined rugs. Please know this – I have not seen the video and I’m not sure she’d sell me one – I’m sure she would recognize my name.

Once again I read the copyright on our Rugs From Rags –

This is not our original design or technique. I believe we perfected it and designed the frame which is what is at stake here. Maybe she gave us credit on the dvd – I don’t know.

I think she probably has a very successful business and just the YouTube videos alone make it easy for the would be rug maker to learn – she uses fabric rolls and lots of jute – neither of which we ever used.. I’d love to see the dvd teaching twining – right down to selling the rubber band to keep the strips on when you first start. I’ll never forget when I started doing that at a show many years ago.

So I only want to know if she gave us credit for the frame design and basic instructions. Her copyright is 2018 – ours is 1997. Rick worked hard on engineering that frame many years ago. She lives in Salina, KS and maybe she had a relative who taught her how to make twined rugs. Her marketing of every aspect of the rug is excellent – we moved on to other things and I would never want to do a video.

So, how’s your weekend going? I’m off to church to ask forgiveness for being upset.

27 thoughts on “Rugs From Rags, 2-26-23

  1. Joy in NW Iowa

    This just takes the cake! Nothing is safe anymore! I’m so sorry you and Rick have been hit again! Just disgusting!

  2. Linda in central iowa

    Besides quilting, I have been doing genealogy for 40 years and teaching classes for 20. This is another field where plagerism is rampant. I do not have my information on the internet as it will be copied over and over within just a matter of a few days and there is never any credit given. I emphasize in my classes “do not copy”. The internet sure has changed our lives and it has its good and bad points.
    But I am also not trying to earn a living from my research, so this is different than in your case. However, the theft of intellectural matter is the same. Remember, God is very familiar with His 10 commandments! His “internet” has not changed.

  3. Rosie Westerhold

    Oh, Mary. I am so sorry this is happening to you yet AGAIN. GRRR😡😡😡!! It is just not RIGHT!!

    I have a similar story to share. Back in the 90s, my small quilt group, The Corny Bunch, self-published a book called Row by Row Quilts by The Corny Bunch. (It’s still available on Etsy) We copyrighted our book, but we did not TRADEMARK “Row by Row.” We never, ever thought to do that. We sold many books over the years, but sales eventually dropped off because of many things, and we stopped publishing it. Before we stopped publishing, many MANY other people started publishing Row by Row patterns and books. We think we were the originators of this type of “row quilt,” taking our inspiration from Seminole quilting. There really wasn’t anything we could do since the concept was something ANYONE could do, but “Row by Row” wasn’t trademarked, so we couldn’t do anything about anyone using that. We all made a little money, had fun making the quilts, are STILL friends almost 30+ years later, and that was our only claim to fame. It wasn’t our main source of business. Almost all of us had jobs, professions, families, and none of us had the time or resources to fight the appropriation of the title of our book. Still burned our behinds, though, every time we saw or were made aware of someone else making these quilts, using our “title,” and never crediting us with “their” ideas. I know this is not the same thing, but it STILL burns my behind to see this happening to you. We were infamous in the quilting world; you were FAMOUS within the quilting industry!! This is just so not right😡😡😡!! We are all outraged for you!! And will point out to anyone who will listen that someone STOLE your stuff!!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Rosie – thank you – I had no idea about Row By Row! I am trying very hard not to be enraged and take each day as it comes.

  4. Sharon

    Unbelievable!
    Lora couldn’t even think outside the box and choose a new name so she named her business the same as yours – Rags to Rugs.
    In addition, you’ve had the quilts Best of All taken by Popular Free Quilt Patterns and Bullseye taken by Janine Alers.
    All these thefts were done for the sole purpose of either making money or giving away something for free.
    These people should be ashamed of themselves.
    So sorry this happened to you.
    Have a good week.
    I enjoy your blog about nothing! 🙂

  5. Luci

    Mary, it just is not right. The rug pattern is yours. The frame design is Rick’s, it seems to me unless she can provide every step she took today, design, production, etc., to prove her claim. It’s rotten that you are having to deal with all the junk. By the way, I have your, “Aunt Amy,” book, have already made two of the Bullseye quilts.. Lots of fun, with enough circles and squares to make more.

  6. Beverly in Texas

    Let go & let God !
    Colossians 3:1-4

    So sorry this continues to happen. In this digital age every thing seems to be up for grabs and a moral compass is sorely lacking for many.

  7. Betty Klosterman

    The School Principal taking credit for somebody else’s work. What a creep! Evidently the principal doesn’t have principles? HE will always know what he did, not that he cares. Guess there isn’t much new under the sun, just easier ways to do it in the Internet age. Maybe theft is the 2nd oldest profession!??

    There are a whole bunch or people who have gotten ahead in life by leaving their footprints on the backs of others. The only thing we can do about it is not do it ourselves. I’m sure you all know people like this. And some of us NEVER forget!

    It is 64 degrees outdoors!!!! The sun is shining so bright and beautiful. And snow is melting like mad, so wipe your feet.

    Take care. and have a wonderful day.
    Betty in Rapid City

  8. Paula S.

    Oh no Mary! I’m so sorry this is happening! I have heard of this woman and her company but didn’t know she did this type of rug making. People have no conscience anymore, I guess.

    1. Paula S.

      Just thought of this – many years ago, I designed the cover for a booklet that was distributed through the school system I worked for and my boss (the principal) claimed it as his design. THEN he had the nerve to enter it in a statewide contest and it won first place! Yep, he displayed the trophy with his name in the trophy case!

      1. Mary Etherington Post author

        Paula S – no! How did he look you in the face? I’m sure others in the school system knew it was your design – somebody should have gone to bat for you! Was there no way to prove it was your design? Gosh, that’s terrible!

  9. susie Q

    And I am moving out of a LARGE storage area to a much smaller one……. and one thing is the box with your rug frame….. and a zillon boxes of fabric………. tomorrow the sun is to come out and I am ready.

  10. Mrs. Goodneedle

    Well this just, plain ain’t right! I’m reminded of a quote by Roy Bennett: “You cannot control the behavior of others, but you can always choose how you respond to it.” I’m often guilty of being reactive instead of proactive and have to stop and remind myself of this very quote. I’m so sorry that this happened to you.

  11. Marsha from Kansas

    Normally I am very proud to say I am from Kansas, but today not so much. I’m so disappointed a Kansan would steal from you. But I want everyone to know what a generous person you are when asked. Way back when I ordered by telephone, I asked whoever was taking my order if you would give me permission to use one of your patterns to make a miniature quilt for my guild’s mini quilt auction held at our every other year quilt show. The proceeds of the auction goes for quilt education in the community. I was planning to make only one. You very generously included a letter with my order allowing me to make a radiculously large number of quilts from the pattern for no profit to myself but requesting that there be a note of the pattern origin on the quilt label. I know I chuckled at the number of times I could use the pattern for that use as we only have the auction every other year and I could just hope to live long enough. Lol

  12. Robin in kelso wa

    I think people who do this are greedy and don’t care a fig about stepping on toes or using someone else’s hard work grr.

  13. Jeanne Fee

    You should not feel bad for being upset. When people take another persons work and claims it as theirs is just wrong! I just wonder how they can look them selves in a mirror . I am so sorry for all that has happened to you lately. But you do know in your heart what is right and correct. Have a beautiful day.

  14. Elizabeth Rodgers

    I feel so bad for you and Rick but I am also amazed. How can this person live with herself taking someone else’s hard work and claim credit? I wouldn’t even give it a thought. So much for her being in church today although lightening may strike if she is,

  15. Dorothy

    I’m so sorry that your going through this Mary. Unfortunately it’s an expensive road to fight over copyright laws. I agree with others that you are being very kind in offering praise for her work in spite of what she has done to you and Rick. God sees all and understands your frustration. I will pray for peace for you so that you can enjoy this glorious Sunday.

  16. Lynn in Scottsdale, AZ

    Mary, I am so sorry you are going through this. I have made so many rugs which I learned how to do in a class at a quilt shop in Phoenix, AZ, in the late 1990s. They were selling your Rugs from Rags brochure which I bought.

    Thank you for the blog and all you do.

    Life does give us pleasure and pain, doesn’t it? I am so grateful for prayer which helps me deal with everything.

  17. Fiona at Ice Bear Quilts

    I think this is happening more and more, due to the ease of self-publishing and marketing a product using social media: there is no one who does due diligence or checks if what a designer is doing and claiming is true in such cases: you make a website or a channel and you put it out there. The lack of integrity is just appalling and so contrary to the spirit of quilters and quilting. Also some people seem to think that is something is from before the internet era, no one will notice if they steal it! They forget that copyright remains active and that the original author/designer may still be around and active and have legions of loyal fans like you do, Mary.
    I have also had a tutorial that I wrote and published on a historic textile technique word for word published by another (commercial) quilter as their own tutorial (which she earns money from). She made her own photo’s but the staging and number of the photo’s was identical and the text was just straight lifted from my blog. I wouldn’t have minded if she had just given me some credit ‘I read this tutorial on such-and-such a blog and this is my version’ would have been enough. But no, she just stole it. Sheesh.

  18. Diane in Colorado

    I’m in agreement with some of the others’ comments. I’m not so sure you need forgiveness for being upset—that’s between you and God. I think you are upset because there has been an injustice and that injustice has been toward you. I will be praying that more than anything God provide you with peace around your reaction to this injustice. I struggle mightily with what I perceive as entitlement— in this case, this woman’s sense of entitlement to your and Rick’s hard work and creative ideas. She did not earn the right to use your intellectual property — she didn’t earn it and she didn’t request permission to use it, she simply felt she was entitled to it. That’s not right. I’m so sorry you’re having to deal with this. I know, unfortunately, how aggravating that can be.

  19. Brenda Ks

    Mary
    I have relatives that live in Salina I will be on the hunt to find this lady. I am looking for anyone that worked in the Quilt shop in Salina before they closed. I think I remember your book being in their shop. This was not the owner of the shop.

  20. Bonnie McKee

    Mary, I’m very upset for you (and Rick!) and will also have to ask forgiveness. I think Diane and Kathy had wonderful comments and have their hearts in the right place. I am inspired by them. I agree that you are very kind to give the Kansas woman credit for a job well done.
    I’m distressed that the laws we have in this country are disrespected by increasing numbers of people, even copyright laws. Sigh.
    I hope everyone has a safe Sunday! 🙏🏼❤️
    Bonnie in Oregon

  21. Diane in Maryland

    I think God understands why you are upset. Your readers do. You are very kind to this person by giving her credit for doing a good job of marketing.

  22. Kathy in western NY

    I am off to church to say a prayer of thanks and continued good health for people like you that bless my life! And the folks who have dealt first hand with the war in Ukraine and their suffering. It’s what matters in my little life. We have so much to be thankful for and you are one!

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