So what is intellectual property?
It is the expression of an idea. It could be a new technology, a song, a book, an invention, a painting or anything else created by the mind.
It can be owned, bought and sold in the same way as any other property, and IP law enables you to protect your rights to your property, just as other laws help protect the other types of property you own.
In order to be protected, it must be expressed.
There is no protection for an idea or a concept. The craft fair idea is just that - an idea, nothing more - and so there is nothing to protect until it is expressed in some way.
It must also be new and original. Remember that word – original. The cushion design is a squirrel. A cushion is not original; a design of a squirrel is unlikely to be original.
There are four main types of IP protection in law; copyright and design are the ones most likely to be of interest to the crafter.
Copyright is free of charge and automatic. It is the most widely-known and recognised type of IP protection, and I dealt with it fairly thoroughly in my last-but-one post. As ever, if you want to know more, or check the legality or accuracy of anything I say, explore ipo.gov.uk