Who Needs to Seek Design Permission?
If your quilt is a completely original design, not based on anyone else’s patterns, photographs, or artwork, you do not need to worry about getting anyone’s permission before displaying your quilt. If your quilt is strictly for your own use and enjoyment, and will not be displayed publicly, used commercially, or sold, you also do not have to seek any permissions. However, if you use someone else’s pattern, artwork, photography, or even another quilt as the basis, starting point, or full source of your design, it is important that you ask for and receive that person’s permission before displaying your quilt publicly. Even though the quilt and the hard work are all yours, the design is the intellectual property of its creator. Your quilt, even if the design has been altered, is considered a derivative work of their original design.
The above paragraph (along with very useful additional guidance) is found on the AQS website. Based on this information, I looked for the designer of a quilt I recently had made based on her pattern. I found her information on the Internet, then emailed her to ask permission to exhibit my version of her quilt in our Quilt Show. She responded that she was thrilled I wanted to show my quilt and hoped I would send her a photo. It’s that easy! So, when you get to the “Design Source” line on the registration form, just complete that line. That’s all there is to it!
VP, Quilt Show