1. The person whose idea it was first says you can make it and sell it
2. You bought it from the owner of the copyright (now this I am still very fuzzy on. For example, I know you can buy a Hello Kitty cake topper, stick it on a cake, and sell the cake as a Hello Kitty themed cake). Other things, I am not so sure how that works.
3. The person who made it or thought of it, whatever, died a long time ago. I believe it's anything made before 1923 becomes "public domain" and you can use it. For example: Charles Dickens, Alice in Wonderland, etc...
BUT, who is really going to go after a small potatos seller like me. Is it worth hiring a lawyer for $400 bucks and hour to prosecute someone who is making a couple hundred dollars on minis of your items? Sheesh.
And there are a lot of loopholes that I've already thought of.
Selling a "Wizard Chest" is different than selling "Harry Potter's Hogwarts Chest" even if the two look almost exactly the same.
Offering a "free" chocolate frog to those who buy a unicorn horn...
Well the list goes on. I have a sneaky mind.
BUT I still struggle with morality. I try to be a decent human being, honest, and giving credit to those who deserve it. I don't want to be a thief, copycat, or criminal.
There is also a LOT of free art, (no royalties) out there. You can Google it.
Anyways, just because "everyone's doing it on Etsy" doesn't mean you SHOULD.
I shall think more on this matter of ethics and decide what I'm going to do.
For now, I am pretty sure I can make and sell Alice in Wonderland books!
So I made one!
There are original quotes in order of chapter from Lewis Carroll's version of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" as well as pictures to go along with them. This is my first one. It came out pretty well.
I have no idea how to price things though. I don't want to rip people off just for the sake of profit. I'm not going to price it at a price that I, myself, wouldn't pay for it. And I'm not trying to make a big profit anyways. Just cover my expenses in materials and if I'm lucky a little extra for my hard work and time. Since I wanted to make one for myself, obviously I had left over paper from the big sheets I bought and what to do with it?! Make more mini books and sell them and then I even out for what I spent on the materials to make one.
My dad told me somethig important though. He said that once you price something, that's the price. It's hard to change it without people getting upset. So I have to think hard on it. My dad said the Alice book should be $20.00 and looking on Etsy, lots of people have books of the same type as mine for that price and even higher. However, I think I'm going to price it much lower. Plus I'm new to this whole world. But I need to sell so I don't go broke buying materials for my own personal hobby!
*Must do more research*