Kiki La Ru bunting IS the original cake bunting.

I really appreciated everyone’s support after my last post. But I need to tell you straight away that I was wrong. Totally and utterly wrong.

I wasn’t the only person to come up with this idea and in fact Dawn, of Kiki La Ru, had her idea prior to mine.

See, after my post, Dawn emailed me because she saw my last blog post in which I put forward my view that I was the first person to have the cake bunting idea. And that that idea had since been copied.

Well, Dawn also came up with cake bunting entirely on her own and has an earlier blog post to prove it.

I am pretty upset that I upset Dawn by implying that she copied me (which I totally did imply) given that that was not at all the case. I was so very pleased with my mini bunting idea and so sure I was first (Dawn’s blog post didn’t come up my searches) that I just motored ahead making assumptions.  And you know what they say about assume, it makes an ass out of u and me.

Dawn contacted me through Etsy and has agreed to let me publish her email to me in full.  It’s a really good lesson: for me; for everyone to remember to give people the benefit of the doubt. For chrissakes people, I’m a lawyer and I did NOT accord other cake bunting-ers the presumption of innocence. I broke the cardinal rule. And for that I apologise whole-heartedly and deeply to Dawn for implying she copied me.

But I also wanted to include Dawn’s email here because it basically sums up everything I think is good about the crafting community.



My name is Dawn, and I own the shop Kiki La Ru.

When I saw your cake bunting on etsy and read in your product description that your cake bunting was the original, I followed the link to your blog. I was surprised to read a post where you were very upset because you believe your idea for cake bunting has been copied. Because I have called my cake bunting shop the Original, and call my cake bunting the Original cake buntings, I am assuming this post is directed at me. I feel it’s necessary that I respond to clear up any misunderstandings, and to hopefully give you some peace of mind.

I wish you knew me personally, because then you would know for certain that I would never steal someone’s idea and call it my own. I think if you would visit my personal blog, you would see that I am a very genuine, honest person.

I had the idea for my cake bunting, with two rows of handsewn vintage and upcycled fabrics hanging between two wooden sticks and topped with bakers twine, back in February 2009. I had this idea in my head that I would like some tiny fabric bunting flags hanging over my cake, so I googled the words ‘cake’ and ‘bunting’ but nothing came up besides large bunting in the shapes of cupcakes. So I fashioned my own and used it on my birthday cake. My blog was very new at the time, I think my mother was the only one reading it back then. I posted a tiny picture of my cake bunting here:
I was very proud of my little creation, and that’s when I started making them for friends and family on their birthdays.

When I decided to open up an etsy shop, I checked to see if anyone else was selling something called ‘cake bunting.’ There wasn’t. After I began selling mine, and it gained in popularity, a few other shops began selling their versions of cake bunting. That’s when I decided it was necessary to label my shop and my products ‘the original.’

One woman wrote to me, saying she made something like these 40 years ago for her children. Are there any really original ideas anymore? Probably not. But I do know I was the first etsy shop to sell cake bunting, and to me, this gives me the right to call mine the original, at least on etsy.

I hope you can put any negative thoughts about me and my shop behind you. I really believe we can all flourish and prosper on etsy in our own right. Our cake buntings are different, and I even told one customer who wanted a name on their bunting to go to your shop, because that is one of the defining features of your cake bunting.

I hope we can have a harmonious experience from here on out on etsy and in the blog world.

Wishing you all the best for your etsy shop,



So people,  here we have a genuine case of two people coming up with the same idea. As Dawn says, it’s probably not even a new idea and to be accurate I should probably say “re-inventing” an idea.

I am grateful Dawn is a person of such generosity of spirit. And in that spirit I am going to remove all references to “original” in my shops and cease selling non-personalised bunting in my Etsy shop. Because that way, both her and I have our own niche in the cake bunting market. Gosh, did you ever think you’d hear such a term: the cake bunting market. I can just hear stockbrokers all over the world muttering ” I wonder how stocks are performing in the cake bunting market”.

I’m still going to sell both kinds in my Made It shop that is Australian based but sell only personalised bunting in my Etsy shop.

I’m also going to link to her shop in my Etsy cake bunting listings to direct people who are after plain (ie, non-personalised) bunting or double strands.

You know what? I’m not feeling like the kind of person I like to think I am. I really wish I had contacted Dawn directly before I published this post but for myriad reasons I didn’t. But I also feel intensely relieved that I can now totally let that yucky feeling that I had been copied go. The irony is, Dawn told me she had exactly the same yucky feeling when other people on Etsy began selling cake bunting after she opened her shop. That was what led her, and rightly so, to add the word “original” to her descriptions and listings.

Dawn and I have since had another lovely email exchange and are both happy at the thought of now being friends and Etsy colleagues.

And so they lived happily ever after.

PS: I am going to edit my previous post to reflect this resolution and also to say that comments to enter the cake bunting giveaway should now be directed to this post. Anyone who has already commented on that post will though, of course, still be entered in the competition.

PPS: I’m off to have a big fat bowl of sheepishness.

26 thoughts on “Kiki La Ru bunting IS the original cake bunting.

  1. hello I have just found your site and it is so interesting and beautiful. regarding your original bunting idea and the the other lady Dawn. There is always a silver lining to these things and the best thing of it all to have come out of it is that you have found a friend and she seems a very lovely lady, so all the angst was worth it. Just an idea for the larger cake bunting how about putting a cup cake eith side of the large cake and putting your bunting inthe cupcakes! Hope this makes sense. Regards. Marion

  2. I think you have handled the given situation very well. Don’t feel too bad about it, as you have clearly tried to make sure you were doing the right thing. Your resolve is very kind too – I wish more people were as considerate regarding craft and design. I have never commented on your blog before, although I am a long time reader, but I felt it necessary to congratulate you. Just this morning a friend found one of her original prints has been ripped off by a etsy seller who is selling it as an “original” vinyl deco; if only they had your ‘yucky feeling’…

    • Hi Sarah and thank you for your kind words. I’m delighted you’ve taken the time to stop in and comment on this. I’m so sorry to hear about your friend though. I certainly can relate to how she’s feeling and hope her situation is resolved in a good way too in the future.

  3. Don’t feel too bad. We’ve all jumped to conclusions at one time or another only to find out we were wrong! I think it’s mighty big of you to admit it and that the two of you worked things out. In blogland, we all see great ideas and mimic and copy. I think it is a great form of flattery to mimic another’s design. But, it’s equally satisfying when we get accolades from the copier for the original idea. This doesn’t really apply in your case because your product and hers, though the same in many ways, in other ways, is different. She’s right…we can all get along and craft and enjoy each others ideas. After all, isn’t that what makes the world go round? 🙂 I’d like to think so…


    • Thanks Karen. I really do appreciate that. I feel I could have won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games for jumping to conclusions this week. I’m retiring from that sport now, though!

  4. The Gang of Four has a great song with a line ‘we’ve all got opinions, where do they come from…’, same with ideas, sometimes they are just in the ether. I really like the way you have resolved this and I’m heading to Dawn’s bog to follow here too… she could easily have blasted you (I may have)… well done girls…

    • I know, I don’t know if I would have been able to be quite as balanced and sweet as she was either. But I think it helped that she too had felt exactly as I was feeling (when the other people on Etsy started selling cake bunting). She’s pretty amazing though I think. And I’m delighted to hear you will follow her. Another lovely outcome.

  5. congratulations on being able to swallow your pride and write this lovely post.
    Well Done to Dawn on contacting you and to both of you for a very pleasant end result.
    I think it is very difficult to be entirely original in Craft. A community that is built on centuries of sharing and learning from each other.
    Do the bunting people get annoyed you used bunting for cake? Who was the first bunting person? something or someone inspired that idea too. it just goes on and on.
    The bottom line is respect for each other and you have shown that here,

    • Well thank Jodie. I really appreciate your comment. I too am so pleased we had such a good outcome. Fair point re the bunting people. I wonder how far back in history you would have to go to find the originator of flags on a string! Medieval Italy perhaps? I think there is a good thesis topic in there for someone! x

  6. Very nice email by Dawn and yourself. I totally agree with her statement about there really isn’t any original ideas any more. I think I read a comment somehwere that there are only 6 or 7 original ideas and everything else is an interpretation of those. It is not cool to claim it as their own as in stealing an idea, but some may be a simple mistake and some are deliberate. Those are sad. This story has a very nice ending – very humbling for all – including myself – thanks for sahring

    • Thanks Maureen. It’s such a vexed issue isn’t it? I like the concept of there being 6 or 7 original ideas and everything else being derivatives of those. Love to be able to trace back to what those ideas are. Would be fascinating. I mean, who invented knitting?

  7. Agreeing with the others! Thank you for your honesty and integrity in writing this post and so glad that you and Dawn have resolved the issue between the two of you.
    Unfortunately there are only so many times one can invent or re-invent the wheel (so to speak), so there will probably always be genuine occasions of multiple people coming up with the same idea in the crafting world.
    Anyway, it was lovely to read about how well this has been handled by all. 🙂

    • Thanks Deb – I really appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment. And I agree. I think there will always be those incidences of spontaneous and roughly contemporaneous creation. And they’ll keep us on our toes!

    • Hi Emma – I know. It’s really an incredible outcome from such a potentially yucky situation. I’m so pleased. Thanks for commenting.

  8. Wow- I really enjoyed reading this. We are all copied at some point and it is so lovely to see such beautiful people have lovely things to say about it rather than fight about it. I think both of you are very admiral and the world needs more people like you two! x

  9. Wow, TB – what a turn of events. I have to say, major props to both you and Dawn for your mature handling of this whole situation. You two should be held up as a textbook case of how to handle copying claims in the crafting community.

    I’ll share this, because it made me laugh… I came up with a crochet idea that I thought was completely original recently. I was all excited, and then I got a stack of 1960’s craft books in the mail two days later. Guess what I found in them – same idea!

    I loved Dawn’s take on things – that there really is room for all of us in this landscape. Yes, it would be nice if people (and corporations) wouldn’t deliberately copy, but in so many cases, it’s just too hard to track the crazy path of influence and inspiration that meanders through our community.

    Anyway. I’m so glad you and Dawn have been able to forge a new friendship.

    • Ahhh SD, what can I say? You’re spot on as ever. While I do wish I had listened to some wise words someone lovely gave me (!) I am happy to have forged this path with its eventual good outcome. xx

  10. Hello Twirling Betty! I was very surprised to see this article. I’ll explain reasons further, but first I want to commend you on writing such an article! I know it is always hard for someone to admit certain things – you are a great example of a good person.

    This is my first time on your blog, in fact I have been experiencing many first time “experiences” since I have been devoting much more time on the internet (being that I am a stay home mom).

    The reason why I was surprised to see this article is because the issue of cake bunting! I thought I was the first person to discover it too a while back!! I remember one night – I was discussing it with my husband and how excited I was to possibly be the first one! When I discovered Etsy – and I am not going to lie – I was bummed and quite sad that it had taken off. See, I have been doing it here, I am from Guam, for quite some time now (because I a mostly a cake baker) and never posted it on the internet until recently. I made a barbie cake (you could see it on my website), and was trying to figure out a way for the cake to mention the birthday girl’s name – that’s how the idea immerged. However, my version was a printable version!

    As mentioned, I am new to posting my items on the internet, I just created a blog and have NO fallowers! Quite sad I know. Anywho, since I saw some cake buntings on Etsy, I thought I still have a chance to stay original – by giving customers the ability to print out their cake bunting (as many times as they want) – they could either glue it on or sew together themselves.

    I hope you are not mad at me, thinking that I am a wannabe. Mostly, I am trying to sell party packages and want to make cake buntings that match the theme. I have yet to sell any, but its ok.

    I am a mother of three girls and whose husband is the only one working. My daughters inspired all my creations, and I am mostly doing this so I can 1. make people happy, and 2. be able to buy things for my family with my own money earned!

    Thank you for such a wonderful post.

    • Hi Rebeca – I think your printable paper bunting idea is adorable and have no doubt you arrived at the idea independently. As we all did! And I wish you great success with your biz. Thanks for your comment.

  11. i was all set to do a blog post about mini bunting today – after i noticed that over the last few weeks i have seen them popping up in party photos allover the web. interestingly, i saw a status update from Save the Date for Cupcakes on facebook leading to this article. which led me to the previous one – which incidental i am SO EXCITED to know that leaving this comment enters me to win one of these delightful items!! – and here i am back again. i think you two have worked out a lovely partnership of sorts – everything happens for a reason, but i can’t help but wonder how do you define which things are copies and which things just are. i mean, like Gussy for instance is known for her trademark ruffle – but did she invent it or just do it really well, because i see tons of others on etsy – just not quite as cute. i can’t really finger what i mean… like key fobs, or mini wallets – those are sold by tons of etsy shops – i am not trying to be rude, i am honestly wondering. Like, even regular bunting or banners for parties – sold by hundreds of people.

    on a side note – i would love your permission to advertise both of you on my blog. your mini buntings are DARLING!

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