All works on this site, unless otherwise noted, are copyrighted to the author Missy H. (aka M. Hull). Please do not use any posts without permission of blog author. You can contact me via email.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Un-neat Back and More Copyright Infringement

To show that not all my backs come out neatly here are some pictures of the backside of The Guardian by Teresa Wentzler. This is a large design with many blended threads and lots of color changes in small areas, specially the dragon's scales and wings. I couldn't do the knotwork border as I damaged the fabric right where one of the corners was supposed to go, so I had to leave it off. I cried for hours when I realized I had damaged the fabric and since I was three-quarters done with this at the time, I refused to start over.

Here is the full picture of the front:

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Front Side Full View

 Full size picture of the back:

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Full Size View Of Back

Closeup of the head front:

The Guardian Teresa Wentzler
Close-up of dragon's head front side view

 Closeup of the head back:

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Close up of the head back side view

Closeup of the wings front:

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Close up view of wings, front side

Closeup of the wings Back

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Close up view of wings, back side

Closeup of stitching to show the color blends and changes in the wings:

The Guardian © Teresa Wentzler
Close up of wings to show stitching detail

So as you can see, my backs are not always neat. The longer carried threads show where I got tired of trying to hide them by running them under already placed stitches and just focused on getting the stitches done. lol

An Honest Plea For Help

Edited to add: I made an error, Dragon Dreams has not closed its doors completely! Please re-read for correct information. Mrs. Aikman-Smith, thank you for correcting me and again I am sorry that I posted inaccurate information about your company.

Earlier today I came across a web site. It is a Chinese posting forum that people have to spend money to get fake cyber money that they call "gold coins". The rate is 1 US dollar buys 100 gold coins. You then spend this cyber money to download stolen charts. I recognized many of the designers and made lists of their designs. I then emailed those companies and provided them the list with direct URL's to the files. I also created a fake log in and password so that I could access the "subscribers only" areas to get as complete a list as possible. I provided this log in information to the designers as well, so they could search for more of their charts. The site was just too large for me to find every chart. As it was I spent 4 hours getting that list. I was so sad by this. The Gift Of Stitching magazine and Heaven and Earth Designs recently made public comments about copyright and copyright infringement. I was sad to find that this site must be one of the sites they meant as many issues of the magazine and many HAED designs are illegally posted for download. Little House Needleworks, Country Cottage Needleworks, Lizzie*Kate, Tam's Creations, Barbara Ana, Bothy Threads, Brittercup Designs, Brooks Books Publishing, Casey Buonaugurio, EMS, Golden Kite, Mystic Stitch, TGOSM, UK mags like Cross Stitch Card Shop, Cross Stitch Gold,  and so so many more all had their charts stolen. This site requires that individual people scan in the charts and upload them so that others can download the files.

Don't people realize that doing this takes money from their favorite designers? That doing this will eventually cause those designers to stop designing charts? It is written on every chart and magazine that they are copyrighted and can NOT be copied or redistributed in any manner without written consent of the copyright holder, yet people still insist they did not know this. How can they not know it in this day and age? Especially after the massive news stories that arose when Napster (the music file sharing program) was sued and found to be breaking copyright laws? That was all over the news for weeks! 

Please, my friends, if you come across a person or a web site that is violating the copyright laws of a cross stitch designer (or other copyright holder such as an author), send an e-mail with the URL to that designer. If we don't all band together and fight copyright violations more of our favorite designers will be forced to stop designing or severely reduce the number of charts they put out per year like Dragon Dreams had to do. Some of these designers are running small businesses and thus can't afford to hire an attorney to fight this, but if stitchers band together, pass the word and refuse to tolerate the theft of a designer's hard work we can put quite a dent in such theft! If we don't, if we just sit by and think that it is no big deal, we will eventually find ourselves losing many of our favorite designers and the wonderful variations that are currently found in the stitching world.

Think about it, if the designers can no longer support themselves and have to stop designing, then the demand for such luxury threads as over-dyed flosses and silks and hand-dyed fabrics will also drop and as a side effect we'll lose those also; we'll lose the different magazines that are currently available. Every aspect of stitching that we currently enjoy will be affected. Stitching will go back to only those designs that the larger companies (such as Leisure Arts) provide us. People who run their own companies have many reasons for doing so and one of those reasons has to include profit. If a company loses money (such as occurs when their product is stolen) then eventually that company will no longer be able to afford to stay open.

Edited to add: Considering the number of hours it takes a designer to create a cross stitch chart, compared to the price those charts are sold for, their profit comes from the total number of charts sold, not from the price of a single chart.

If charts were priced based on an hourly wage, they would be a lot more expensive. For example (using small easy number for this example only):

small design/drawing/idea takes 10 hours..
charting the idea takes additional 10 hours..
model stitching takes 10 hours..
corrections to chart found during model stitching takes 5 hours
that small chart required 35 hours to create.

At minimum wage (USA minimum wage $6.55/hr) that would be worth  $229.25 (35 hours X $6.55=$229.25). That's just the man hours required to produce the chart. The larger and more detailed the chart, the more hours and materials it takes and even a small chart probably takes more than 35 hours to create.

Now add in cost of printing the chart, materials with which to stitch the model, postage, and hours required to put it all together and the price goes even higher. Yet charts remain at reasonable prices and selling a single chart of any design does NOT come close to even breaking even for the designer's time spent.

So every chart that is stolen and given to someone for free, directly affects the income of that designer's company and even a few such thefts are devestating. The more thefts which occur, the more damaging it is to the business.

So please, do not tolerate such theft when or if you come across it and help preserve the wonderful variations that are currently available in our favorite hobby! If you have copied patterns to pass along to your friends in the past, please stop doing so! It is stealing. It is illegal and it does take a toll, one that every stitcher including yourself will pay for when those companies have to close their doors.

If it makes a difference to hear this directly from a designer then go to Jennifer Aikman-Smith's old blog and read about how copyright infringement affected her business "Dragon Dreams" and how it forced her to stop severely curtail the number of cross stitch charts she designs in a year. She had to turn her focus to other areas (such as her beautiful illustrations) in order to keep her business open. designing cross-stitch charts. The entries are all still visible at this link:

**edited to add: The above link is to Mrs. Aikman-Smith's old blog. I provide that link as it gives her specific story of her battles against copyright infringement in her own words, and clearly states the major impact this had on her business including the percentage of income lost to such theft. To see what Mrs. Aikman-Smith is currently involved in please visit her current web-site at 

This is not a joke and we can no longer sit back and assume someone else will take care of it, or that it doesn't affect us, or that it can't be that bad. It does affect us and it is that bad!

We all need to do our best to preserve our favorite hobby!

Edited to add: Mrs. Aikman-Smith, I am very sorry for posting that Dragon Dreams had closed. I went back and re-read your older blog and realized that I had misread it. I am sorry and have corrected the post.

I am *very* glad to hear that you are still designing, even though it is not as many charts as in the past. I love your work and have many of your charts in my stash and on my to do list. Thank you for taking the time to correct me, I greatly appreciate it.


  1. Hi Raven,

    Your post raising awareness about copyright issues is wonderful... but Dragon Dreams isn't out of business! True... I don't design as many cross stitch designs for publication myself anymore, but I am teaching a bunch of classes in Toronto this fall and those designs will be released with Patterns Online later. The Multiply blog isn't my main one anymore, so you might want to point people to my website instead at I still sell my older designs to shops as well, so I don't want people to think I've closed my doors completely... I just moved on to other things as well when the cross stitch part is so easy to steal. You've had an horrible glimpse of just how bad the problem is and why so many people are struggling now to keep shops or design companies going. I think we missed our chance as an industry about 7 years ago to really deal with the problem, but thankfully there are still honest stitchers like you out there who speak out. You are the type of stitchers we all design for! THANK YOU...

  2. Mrs. Aikman-Smith,

    Thank you for taking the time to correct me, I greatly appreciate it! I am truly sorry for posting erroneous information. I have corrected the post and re-posted it as a new entry as I realize not everyone re-reads older entries on a blog.

  3. Hi there, thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog. Congrats on your Guardian, he's really stunning! I've stitched two large TWs in the past, and I know how intricate they are and the dedication they require - and quite honestly, with that kind of project, I just couldn't worry about how the back looks! Well done!


Thank you very much for visiting my internet home for my crafts. I appreciate your taking the time to visit and/or comment.

If you have any questions (looking for designer information of a piece I'm stitching, how to do cross stitch etc. ) please feel free to contact me. You will find my email address in my profile and I will do my best to either answer your question, or find information that can help you get your answer.

Thank you again for the visit and I hope you have a great day!

Missy (aka Raven)