Australian designs, Victorian designs, British designs, American designs
The registration of designs in
This system had 14 Classes (see the Design Classes box in this guide) under which designs were registered. The period of registration was 3 years for articles in Classes 1 to 5, and 2 years for articles in Classes 6 to 14.
On 1st July 1907 the Australian Designs Act of 1906 (No. 4 of 1906) came into force, and the function of registering designs in Australia was transferred from the state governments (including Victoria), to the Commonwealth government.
The collection of Australian registered designs at call number MF495 was provided to the State Library of Victoria by the Patent, Trade Marks and Designs Offices (Canberra). It consists of microfilmed copies of nineteenth century colonial and twentieth century Australian designs registered up to 30th September 1998.
If you are searching for an Australian design registered from 1907 onwards, first use the print and online resources and indexes listed on this guide under the heading Australian Designs and Australian Design indexes. You should not need the microfiche collection, which is organised by Locarno class and sub-class numbers across all the years in each sequence described below. Our print indexes give the class number and not the sub-class number.
, first check the Locarno Design Classes index, as the microfiche indexes are organised by classes 1 to 99 according to the Locarno classification system which was introduced in 1982. (This does not apply to the designs in print format - the original class numbers apply).
The microfiche are held in drawers in two major sequences:
Microfiche sequence: Australia Registered designs 1906 to 6 March 1984.
Despite the 1906 date given in the title, these designs include nineteenth century Victorian design registrations registered from the 1860s up to 1906, when the Australian Designs Act became law. Other states (or colonies as they were before Federation) are included. The microfiche collection is arranged in drawers by Locarno class number and sub-class, not by year. For retrieval purposes, you need to know the class number.
When you view the microfiche, you will see that they are organised by Class number followed by design number order (it's not necessary to know the sub-=class number). The designs are then listed chronologically under each class/ sub class - for example 25/ 02. Pre 1907 designs will appear frist under each class and sub-class and are listed alphabetically by state (colony) and then number (so for example VIC 20 will be listed after SA21 or QLD 23)
Australian Registered Designs Updates 7 March 1984 to 30 September 1998
These are Australian designs which were registered between the dates given. Organised in drawers by Locarno class and sub-class number.
Within the fiche collection, the designs are organised by Class number and design number.
For staff requesting the microfiche
Title on catalogue:
The microfiche are listed on the catalogue under the following sequences:
Class 01-01 to 99.00 (Years 1906 to 6 March 1984). These include the Victorian nineteenth century designs, re-classified into the Locarno class numbers.
Updates (for years) 7.3.84 to 30.9.95 and 1.10.95 to 30.9.98.
Library patrons cannot request the microfiche with their library membership number: a librarian can do this with a staff login. Staff select the appropriate sequence and type in the class numbers required, and sub-class if this information is available.
These microfiche will be delivered to the Heritage Collections Reading Room, to be consulted there.
Library patrons can click on Ask a librarian on our web page to complete the online inquiry form to request the class number and preferably the sub-class number and the year required. You can also make this request at an information desk.
Alternatively, if you know the class number and the subject of the Victorian or state design, it may be possible for a librarian to search the microfiche, if it is not possible to find the design in other sources. Complete the Ask a librarian form in this case.
National Archives of Australia
You may prefer to search the National Archives of Australia collection for nineteenth century designs. The National Archives of Australia in Canberra holds the Victorian designs paper publications from 1 Jan. 1870 to 31 Dec. 1898. They were published by the Patents Office, Victoria. See the National Archives box for details.
Design for peaked rimless cap by Peter Auden, Box Hill South.
Class 10, Millinery and wearing apparel.. Australian design number 53962.
Date of application: 20 January 1969.
Design for a cricket or hockey ball registered 7 January 1930. Applicant: C.D. Sherrin. Design number 7982.
Registered under the Australian design index in class number 6, which relates to leather articles.
This design appears in the microfiche collection at MF495, re-classified under the Locarno index class number 21, which relates to games, toys, tents and sports goods. It is filed at 21.02.
Note that if you are searching the print indexes, the design class follows the original Australian class number.
The National Archives of Australia (NAA) in Canberra holds copies of Victorian design applications, together with registers and indexes, as noted in the series listed below. The designs were published by the Patents Office, Victoria. To find the catalogue records on the National Archives web catalogue, go to the National Archives of Australia website. Type the words designs applications in the search box to see a listing of designs held.
The Victorian designs are listed on the RecordSearch database under the entries:
Register of applications for Designs 1870 to 1873 - numbers 1 - 100
Register of applications for Designs 1873 to 1878 - numbers 101 - 200
Register of applications for Designs 1896 to 1898 - numbers 801 - 950
These nineteenth century registers of print designs are held in the Canberra office of the National Archives.
Design indexes held at NAA are:
NAA Series A1189 - Classification index to designs (1870-1903)
NAA Series A1190 - Subject index to design classification (1879-1906)
NAA Series A1191 - Register of copyright of designs (1870-1888)
NAA Series A1192 - Specimens of designs under Copyright Act (book A) (1870-1899)
You can request copies of designs from the NAA. If you know the relevant NAA Series number, also quote this in your request. Contact details are on the NAA's "Ask us a question" page.
Individual design applicants
You can search RecordSearch by individual family name, using the surname of the designer and selecting the category Copyright,patents, trademarks, which gives you a date range option. Not all design applicants may be found this way, but it is worth searching. You can then order a copy of the design, if it has not already been digitised.
Design for a sandal by F.L. Charters & Co Pty Ltd, South Brisbane.
Class 10, Millinery and wearing apparel, including boots and shoes
Australian design number: 52468
Date of application: 27 March 1968.
In line with the stage 3 restrictions announced by the Premier, State Library Victoria closed on Thursday 9 July.
We will advise when there is any update to this situation.
Our Ask A Librarian reference service is still available to assist with your research inquiries.