I'm Still Stitching ~ Why I'm Not Sharing My Work

You may have noticed that I have shared very little crazy quilting lately.  This is not the type of post that I ever thought I would need to write, but after reading Sue Bleiweiss' post the other day, I felt that I needed to speak up about something that has recently happened to me.  

Please read Sue's post here: https://suebleiweiss.blog/2017/04/02/inspiration-vs-copying/ She has kindly given me her written permission to link to it from my blog.  She said all this much more eloquently than I.

I have freely shared my work, written about what I'm working on, the materials I have used, why I have used them, about why I have made the design choices that I have.  Many of you have found this inspirational and in turn, your blogs,  posts and e-mails about your work have inspired me.

Recently, I learned that my work was not being used as inspiration, but being copied almost exactly by a few individuals.  In each of the situations, I learned of it after the work had been completed and shared with others.  I was told that I shouldn't be offended, that it was the highest form of flattery.

But the reality is that I don't feel flattered, instead I feel rather violated by the blatant/flagrant copying of my work.  It has made me uneasy to share so freely.

Copying someone else's work without permission isn't flattery.  It is stealing.  It is a copyright violation and it is illegal.

I'm still stitching, but just not sharing right now.

p.s. at the bottom os Sue's post, there are several links about the issue of copyright in the arts if you would like further information.  The one from Lost Quilt is especially helpful as it's written in plain English. 


traderslostart said…
Oh Lisa, I am so sorry that this has happened to you. I love your work, but copying your blocks has never ever occurred to me and secondly I am not good enough to stitch as beautifully as you do.

Now a question. I believe I told you quite some time ago, that I have 10 Pinterest Boards that each feature 1 of my Top 10 Favorite Crazy Quilters. I also am sure I told you one was dedicated to you and your work.

After what you posted today I wanted to touch base with you and ask if those posts that I have done of your work for several years are something that I need to delete. I hope not. Any work I post of yours I remember that I told you about the boards I had, and that one was yours. I never post any CQ without giving credit to the person who did it. Now I don't know what to do.
God's Blessings and Bear Hugs, Sondra
traderslostart said…
Sorry. I hope what I wrote makes sense. I am very upset about what has happened to you.
Bear Hugs,
Cathy Marcum said…
I am so sorry to hear this. I am also sorry that we don't have an opportunity to see more of your beautiful work. I truly enjoyed it as some of the best crazy quilt work out there. I hope there is some way to resolve the issue so we can all share again. Have you written books? If so I would love to have them if not maybe you could.
PKBrandon said…
Well that is rotten! I love seeing your work. And while I love looking all over the web for inspiration, I couldn't duplicate even if I tried. Shame on them for stealing - and it is stealing. I've saved many pictures of your work on my laptop and love looking at them from time to time. Maybe you can still share and just not give all the details???
Lin said…
Very sad to read this post Lisa as I have so enjoyed seeing your work. Definitely it is theft and I am so sorry that it has happened to you. xx
Dear Lisa ~ I am so sorry this has happened to you. Your work has inspired me so much, making me want to learn new stitches and techniques.

Love & hugs to you and I hope one day you will share your beautiful creations with us once again.


As a CQ novice, I want to respond to this post. You are one of the several talented CQ artists that have inspired me to work a little harder at perfecting seams and design. Your work and style is very recognizable to me. For the life of me, I can't understand why anyone would copy work and claim it as theirs, but I do know that it happens, and happens in every art form. I would simply close with a huge Thank You for sharing what you have in the past and for the inspiration that you have given me. Be well and be happy.
xx, Carol
Anonymous said…
I researched this area some time ago when I was thinking of blogging. I think in our current 'global internet environment' it is hard to enforce copyright laws. My recollection is some of the responsibility for enforcement is left to the artist. I'm sorry you are no longer sharing. I enjoyed your blog. I hope you will go back to sharing in the future. Otherwise, why blog?
Ah yes, the wonderful Internet. It happens all the time with recipes and photos of foods that have been carefully prepared by very talented cooks. It is sad, but a reality. I have loved seeing your stitching and deep inside wish I had the talent to do what you do, as my grandmother also had that talent. Do whatever makes you comfortable Watermarking the photos should help, but don't let the "bad guys" control your talent.
amalowany said…
Sorry to hear about your issue. I have enjoyed your posts for some time now and will miss your pretty creations. I love CQ, but have not started a project for some time with CQ components. I have saved some of my late mothers silk items and I do hope to one day start a CQ quilt or CQ jacket with the fabric from them. I do hope you will find the desire to post some of your awesome creations in the future. I do love seeing them (also you photos of flowers, etc.). I do get lots of inspiration from bloggers like yourself and Pinterest. Not everyone out in the internet space are unsavory characters.
I am sorry to hear this has happened. With our kind of crazy, I don't know how you can copy someone else's work...not exactly....I can't even begin to do some of the stitches and artwork you do. When someone ask how I do a certain stitch, I give them sites to go to so they can learn on their own and not copy me! But please don't give up being a inspiration to all of us!!! That's what we all need to be for each other, and there's more than enough inspiration to go around without making exact copies!! Keep up the good work.
Also, you can put your name as a watermark on any pics...they can't use the pics then as if they are their own.
Happy Stitching,
Jean Williams said…
Lisa, I surely hope you don't feel as if I have "burned" you. I made a reference to your website and posted a link last summer. I don't think anyone else really reads my blog, it is too rarely updated and probably not exciting enough. I also included you in my favorites side bar. I did make a seaside CD design but don't believe I ever claimed it was my idea. If you find my references offensive, I will gladly remove them. Here is my blog address:

Yours, sending you sew much hope and respect, Jean A. Williams, calicostitches75@gmail.com
mamathak said…
Hi Lisa
I just wanted to say I'm very sorry to hear this, but I completely understand. I learn so much from your work and you even have your very own folder so I don't have to dig through the other things I've saved to find it. I will say that as a teacher, I encourage my student to emulate the work of other artists they admire (like the great painters) as a way to practice and hone their craft, but I also stress that they should never outright "copy " and/ or claim the ideas as their own, but rather give credit to the artist they are studying. I sure hope you will come back some day. I for one will miss seeing your beautiful work. Kind Regards, Ann Thacker
Anonymous said…
Hi Lisa.

I am so sorry to hear that others have violated you in this way. I understand how bad this feels since I have had the same happen as an artist. I don't quilt (not where my talents lie) but I truly have enjoyed seeing your work since I discovered your blog. It will be sorely missed as long as you don't feel like you can safely share your beautiful works here, but I understand and will continue to follow your blog and enjoy what you do share with us. Hopefully there will come a time when you feel free to share again.

suz said…
this is so sad and while I can certainly understand why you won't share your work, I'm sad that it's happened. Like so many others, I find your work inspirational - the way colors come together, how a stitch and the beading is used, a component you've used. I certainly wouldn't copy anything - there is absolutely no way my work would come close to the quality of yours, but it's always been wonderful to think - hmmm, how did she do this...okay, that's a thought - and go forward - usually with something totally different, but inspired by you. It's incredibly sad that someone thinks that copying you exactly without your permission and/or without giving credit where credit is due, is in any way flattering. So sorry this happened.

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