|The amazing—and often copied—Galaxy Dress|
For instance, lots of people were (rightly, I think) shocked that someone would suggest buying the dress, taking it apart and copying it, re-stitching it and returning it. But many of these same commenters had no problem with buying and returning the dress to copy it, in a less invasive manner. Still others found the very idea of trying to copy the dress repugnant and a form of intellectual property theft.
The fashion industry itself has not set a very good example in this area: knockoffs are rampant because there's no real way to copyright a garment design. (Yet, anyway. There are proposed laws that would potentially change this.) And the sewing pattern companies have followed suit. While the Big Four pattern companies do license designs from designers like Michael Kors and Tracey Reese, just as often designs are copied without the designer's consent. Take the famous Roland Mouret Galaxy dress, which later cropped up in the very similar Vogue 8280:
yellow dress design was taken directly from an Anthropologie dress. (For the record, I didn't buy the dress and return it; I just took some stealthy pictures in the dressing room and adapted the details.) Furthermore, as long as you're not mass producing replicas or selling the patterns you drafted off another designer's work, is there any harm in it? That's an honest question; I sincerely don't know for sure.
What do you all think? Where does this issue fall on your own moral compass?