The glossy glossy world of fashion is way more than it meets the eyes. Beyond all the classy couture, the high fashion ramp scenes and the fitting room drama, exists another world- a world of stolen ideas, forged concepts, designers’ tantrums and design house politics!
Let’s take you on a journey of top 6 lawsuits in fashion. Scroll down!
- Christian Louboutin v Yves Saint Laurent
The big daddy of luxury shoes Christian Louboutin is well known for their red lacquered outsole which is trademarked in 2008. Come 2011, Yves Saint Laurent released their collection of monochrome footwear in various hues including those with a red outsole.
Louboutin filed a trademark registration lawsuit in April 2011, on grounds of infringement of the Red Sole Trademark. Saint Laurent filed a counter claim, seeking cancellation of the Red Sole Trademark on grounds of lack of distinctiveness.
This stands out as one of the cult cases of color trademark where even a single color is capable of functioning as a trademark.
- John Galliano v Christian Dior
Two attributes are always which are forever attached to John Galliano- outrageous and brilliant! He has headed couture houses like Givenchy and Dior and is a megatsar of the fashion industry. In 2011, a video surfaced with Galliano passing anti Semitic remarks on Italian tourists. Dior held up their value system and suspended Galliano. They even started proceedings for permanently dismissing Galliano. Maison Margiela, who was the creative director for Galliano lost the wrongful terminal case, against both Dior and his brand.
Galliano moved court and asked for damages amounting to $18 million. At-will employment is not as recognized in Europe as the States. He lost the suit!
- New York fashion Week Trademark Infringement Lawsuit
The fashion week organized by WME-ING and CFDA dates back to 1943 and has informally been called “New York fashion Week” since the 2000s. Now, a venture by the name of “Fashion Week” was founded by Ms Trisha Paravas to produce fashion shows for masses outside the fashion paternity and media. Her shows were initially called “New York fashion Shows” and she decided to register the same. She also claimed that there was no prior existent trademark for New York Fashion Week and NYFW.
Coincidentally, Mercedes Benz dropped sponsorship for the fashion week organized by WME-ING and CFDA (what is popularly NYFW) and the event was rebranded as NYFW.
Ms Paravas has sued for an array of issues inclusive of trademark dilution, unfair competition and trademark infringement and seeking an injunction. While we are yet to know the decision, here’s looking forward to our good old NYFW in all its pomp.
- Hells Angels v Alexander McQueen
Talk about a lawsuit between chalk and cheese! Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation sued Alexander McQueen for trademark infringement of the HAMC skull-and-wings pattern which McQueen used on a knuckle buster ring, a dress and a scarf.
Hells Angels claimed that the pattern held immense commercial value and by using the pattern, McQueen was trying to cash on HA’s goodwill. The fashion paternity is left in shock at this statement- “Really?”
- Hailey Clauson v Urban Outfitters
Age is not just a number for the world of glamour and the fashion industry sees a host of starry eyed young faces every year. Clauson is one such star model who was “discovered” at the age of 14 and has had impressive projects in her kitty. In 2011, Urban Outfitters stocked t shirts from Blood is the New Black with racy photos of a 15 year old Clauson. Clauson’s parents, on her behalf, moved to court and claimed damages amounting to $28 million.
Now, her parents were well aware of the existence of these photos but they claimed that images had been used without consent and that they have used to create false endorsements. It was later reported that the case has been settled.
- Wang v Hearst Corporation
Diana Wang was the “head accessories intern” at Harper’s Bazaar and she sued Hearst Corporation, the mother corporation of Harper’s Bazaar on grounds of violation of federal and state labour laws. He claimed that she had a 5 days/ week work schedule and she had been working from 9 AM to 8 PM without minimum wage and overtime payment.
With numerous suits dotting the fashion world with progressing frequency, here’s hoping for fair practice in this glitzy dizzy world of glamour.