intellectual property infringement: or why i don’t sell disney party decorations

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intellectual property infringement

I’m surprised you are even reading this post because the title is just so bad. Boring bad, like snoozeville bad. But I really wanted to answer a question that so many have asked me over the last 5 1/2 years…. and that is why you can’t buy Cars/Cinderella/Tangled/Frozen party decorations from Paper & Cake.

I have two reasons. Wanna hear them? Of course you do, this is fascinating reading after all.

Reason number one:

Almost 6 years ago, when P&C was launched, I remember the feeling of endless possibilities. Party themes and color schemes and illustrations of any kind! The only creative limitations were due to the number of hours in the day (and taking care of my kids/husband of course, I love you honey if you are reading this). I couldn’t stop the ideas (still can’t) and had lists and lists of what I would work on next. Lucky for me, I actually went to school to be a graphic designer, and I do have some pretty mad skills – although I may be a bit biased.

intellectual property infringement

Now, I wasn’t living in a vacuum – I have always looked at the world around me for inspiration, trends and forecasting. It would be ridiculous to think I would put my head down and not ever look up. Yes, little boys are OBSESSED with trains and cars. Little girls are SUPER into princesses and PINK. I know this because A) I have a boy who at one time slept with his trains, and B) I have a girl who at one time only wore pink tutus. So I created an AMAZING printable Princess birthday kit and an ADORABLE printable Train birthday party kit. All illustrated by me. Not clip art, not purchased art, but by my hand.

intellectual property infringement

Why? Because I LOVE it! I love working on these design projects, creating birthday parties for moms to put their creative spin on, coming up with the different pieces – the banner the invitation the coloring pages – offering a product that is affordable and original and made with love. And as much as my kids (and probably your kids too) have loved “Nemo” and “Toy Story” and “Cinderella”, recreating those characters is not what I want, it’s not my mission, it’s not my vision.

intellectual property infringement


Reason number two:

Now, I’m no attorney. Really just about as far away from a lawyer as one can be. But I know that taking someone else’s idea and selling it as your own is against the law.

Copyright infringement is the use of works protected by copyright law without permission, infringing certain exclusive rights granted to the copyright holder, such as the right to reproduce, distribute, display or perform the protected work, or to make derivative works.

It doesn’t matter if the Disney item being sold is handmade, or “inspired” by, or if you add a disclaimer to the description, unless you have a license from Disney to sell their item it is against the law. Not just Disney either… Sports teams, University names, Star Wars, Tiffany & Co, Minecraft and on and on and on.

A few years ago, an Etsy seller helped themselves to one of my photo booth prop sets – traced my items exactly. I was furious. Immediately I jumped all over the issue – emails went flying! Yes, it eventually was taken care of, my design was removed from their shop. Imagine how you would feel?


So, I guess in wrapping up this boring informative post, I hope that you find a beautiful and original set of party decorations here at Paper & Cake. That you will bring your own creativity to your event – and love your party set as much as I did in creating it!

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