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Labelling & Safety Laws for the Handmade Business

Submitted by on June 30, 2010 – 5:49 pm3 Comments

by Christina DennisBlank Label

In this post, I’ll be focusing on another set of legal issues that DIY mommies selling their creations should know – labelling & safety laws for childrens toys & textiles.

These areas still bewilder me a bit, so this post will mostly be links to government sites in Canada and the USA so that you can read the information yourself. If you have information on these topics from your own country or want to add to the links I’m posting, please comment below! Like most crafters, I am constantly learning new things every day. I hope this post will be a helpful resource for others like me.

LABELLING LAWS

Even if you handcraft your items, you are required by law to put a label on them when you sell them. The neccessary information that needs to go on your label will depend on the laws in your country.

PRODUCT SAFETY

Products, ESPECIALLY childrens products, are required by law to be safe for consumers. The manufactuer (whether you are a massive corporation or a DIY mommy) is required to ensure the safety of products they sell as well as making buyers aware of possible safety hazards associated with their product (ie. small parts warnings, choking hazard etc.). From what I’ve researched to this point, the USA’s safety requirements for children’s products are a lot stricter than Canada’s with the introduction of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) in 2008. According to the latest news, though, Canada will soon be making stricter changes to its product safety laws.

At this time, here is an overview of what is required saftey-wise for products sold in Canada & USA:

  • CANADA – Childrens clothing cannot have drawstrings, small parts on clothing & accessories (like buttons) are unsafe, and childrens clothing & toys must meet strict flammability requirements (ESPECIALLY sleepwear). This is just a brief overview; please read all of the details here: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/cps-spc/child-enfant/access/index-eng.php
  • USA – Every part of childrens clothing and toys needs to be tested & passed for toxicity and other elements according to the new CPSIA laws. These laws are quite in depth, so please read about them here: http://www.cpsc.gov/about/cpsia/smbus/cpsiasbguide.html

More helpful links in CANADA:

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3 Comments »

  • Jen says:

    Wow – thank you so much for posting this article!!! This is something I’ve not even thought about! I do label my items and they also indicate that the item was made in Canada, however, I don’t have my address on them! Something to think about, I suppose! I will definitely be sharing this link with my Etsy teams!!!

  • Angie Andrews says:

    I’m not sure when you wrote this post. But it seems like you may know more then I do on the labelling laws in Canada. I have looked at your links and am even more confused. I make tutus and other accessories. Do I need to label the tutus with a permanent label or can I just have a label attached or do I need a label at all? Any help would be great. Thanks Angie.

    • Christina says:

      Hi Angie! It is my understanding that all textiles sold in Canada need to have a permanent label on them (if they are large enough for a label). The best thing would be to contact the Canadian Competition Bureau and/or a lawyer that specializes in product manufacturing for legal answers. I hope that helps!

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