Musings of a Designer on Jewelry, Crochet, Crochet Patterns, Knitting, Running a Crafty Business, Movie Costumes, Books, Art, Design, Steampunk & the Geek Girl Life

Monday, September 08, 2008

Polyvore -- An Artist's Nightmare or Advertising Dream?

What a whirlwind of activity the first week of school has been! There was paperwork, and orientations, and paperwork, and routines to implement, and forms to fill out (more paperwork!), and last minute supplies to get .... and MORE paperwork. I think I was busier than the kids, and they were the ones actually going to school! But all is well and everyone is settling nicely into their school year routines.

I didn't have much time to create with all the chaos, but I did google myself and my company one night. I think everyone googles themselves, but I haven't in a really long time. Imagine my surprise when I found multiple items from my shop being used in collage montages at a site called Polyvore.
Polyvore collage by Erin.
I love this one -- it's romantic like a Titanic love story!
My "Vintage Dictionary Earrings -- Wisdom" are in this one.

So I googled that ... and what a can of worms that seems to be among designers! I can certainly see why it raises copyright issues, esp. for digital artists and graphic designers. I've never had my images used without permission before, but, after some thought on the issue, I've decided that I am OK with my images being used on Polyvore. It's just the low-resolution images being used (not my original designs being copied), with full credit given and links back to the originating page on the boutique site. And ..... it's page after gorgeous page (27 FULL pages on google!!) of my jewelry being shown in various outfits and mood pieces ... with LOTS of people viewing them and voting on them and ooohing and ahhing over them. You can't beat that kind of free advertising! Just look at some of these wonderful collages!
Polyvore collage by amytrip.
This one is so soft, like a golden autumn evening.
My Firebird hand-illustrated pendants are in this one.

Polyvore collage by Adoniram.
This one feels like a fashion page in a glossy magazine!
Another one of my hand-illustrated pendants is included.

Polyvore collage by vibeska.
Pink and sassy!
My "Vintage Dictionary Earrings -- Faith" are in this one.

The Vintage Dictionary earrings seemed to be highly used images. There were 41 sets for the black "Wisdom" ones alone, some posted just a few hours ago! "Faith" had 13.

Now, if the trend begins where people are selling these polyvore collages, as journal covers, notecards etc., or they claim ownership over the borrowed photos, then that is going to be whole different story from a designer's copyright viewpoint and I'll have to change my stance, but for now ..... if anyone out there wants to create a cool Polyvore collage including a lovely pic of any of my products, send me the link and I will post it on my blog :) It has to be cool though! :)


NeereAnDear said...

I almost did a double take and thought the gal was claiming your jewelry as hers... but au contraire I was wrong... that really is a neat and fabulous way to have your items and your jewlry advertised for nothing... congrats on a great way to get your name out there wooo hooo!!



Polyvore said...


We (Polyvore) are so pleased that you like our site. Please feel free to get in touch with us. We would love to have a data feed of your items to provide our users even more access to your merchandise (with pricing listed for easy shopping!). We can also run specialized advertising for your merchandise by hosting collage contests to use your jewelry. Please let us know!

jen said...

i've heard of the same concerns regarding polyvore but it definitely seems like it would be good exposure! and your pieces work so beautifully in them.

AscenderRisesAbove said...

I had never heard of them so thanks for the heads up. are you getting a back link to the item or your site or your contact information? i guess it somewhat like the yearned for treasury exposure on etsy?

Mary-Laure said...

Those are lovely collages and I'm glad your work is acknowledged by the polyvore users.

KV said...

This is so cool, Heather! I love the idea that your jewelry is so appreciated that folks are making up these fashion collages . . .

Kathy V in NM

Monica Crowe said...

Look at you! You are a jewelry making rock star. Those collages look awesome.

Karin said...

How did they get your earrings and necklace images in the first place? I've heard about this site, but haven't been there yet. I'll have to go check it out..... But it does look pretty cool like it's all in a magazine spread...I think your earring need to be in InStyle :)

Sandra at 7th St. Studio said...

How cool is that! I think those collages show off your creations beautifully! You will get business from that, so it works out well! It won't be long till you tell us that your designs are featured in one of the fashion magazines on newstands nationwide!!!-Congrats-Sandra