Thursday, 19 December 2013

Designer ethics

Rachael Taylor, a talented young designer from Liverpool has accused Marks and Spencer of stealing her designs after the store launched a range of clothes featuring her designs. 

Rachael said: "It appears that this British superstore has a design that is more than strikingly similar to my 'Etched Floral' hand drawn original design. It's one of my signature designs and I just want to point out that I never granted permission for Marks and Spencer to use it."
Marks and Spencer have now withdrawn the products from sale. 

Marks & Spencer tshirt design.

Rachael's design.

Rachael added: "I understand the importance of standing up for yourself as a designer and for your intellectual property rights, to not be scared and speak out and protect whats rightfully yours."
After posting on her website the images of her work and the images of the designs being stolen, Rachael has been receiving lots of messages of support from fellow designers, the Design Trust was among those who commented, with others stated that it was 'blatant plagiarism'. Rachael has said she has been "overwhelmed with support", she also explained "I'm taking legal action against Marks & Spencer, as not only has my design been used for profit without my permission, I believe in standing up for civil rights of myself and anyone else who has encountered this in their own professional life. It's really important to raise awareness, to stop this happening to other independent designers."

In a statement, Patricia Van Den Akker, Director of The Design Trust, said: "I hear daily of cases like this, it really hurts these small designers both financially and emotionally."

As a textiles design student I personally would be extremely angry if someone had blatantly stolen my designs, as designs are so personal to the designer, I find it absolutely outrageous that someone could steal them and not give any recognition to the actual designer, I also think that Rachael has handled the situation extremely well by taking action and standing up for her designs. 


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