SA Sell Own Designs in Purchased Frames - Legal Under Intellectual Property Law?

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Aisha YF

29 January 2016
Hi there.

So I am thinking about selling some of my graphic designs using my own photos and own fonts online (not as a business - just on a site like eBay or Etsy) for a bit of extra money. I think that's all legal under Intellectual Property Law if I'm correct? Unless selling photopaper that says a company name on it is illegal?

I literally know next to nothing about Intellectual Property Law so please forgive my naivety. What I'm really not sure about is I want to sell these printouts in photo frames because people will be more likely to buy things already in a nice frame. I am no carpenter and can't just make my own frames. So, I was wondering if it was legal to sell my prints in frames purchased from IKEA or Officeworks or from some big company like that without their permission.

Obviously, I would take off all the brand stickers and not advertise the fact the frames were bought there. I know its very unlikely that they would even ever find out that I am reselling like a couple of their frames online as an individual seller and not even a company/business but I don't want to do anything illegal that could get me in trouble!

Oh, and I wouldn't be making profit out of the frames themselves. I would sell them at the retail price I buy them for and they would just be an addition to the prints (that I would be making profit from).

What do you think? Is everything I want to attempt legal and can I resell other company's frames this way? Any recommendations?


Hi Aisha, I don't see any legal problem with doing this. You own the copyright to any designs, etc. that you are using and reselling the IKEA frames which you have altered isn't contrary to any intellectual property law.