Friday, January 6, 2012

sole sista drama

image thanks: pinterest
the greatest form of flattery is imitation.... a line popular when you were in high school has appeared to be true in the court case hearing between Christian Louboutin and Yves Saint Laurent.

in april 2010, Louboutin filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against YSL for breaching its copyright of the unmistakable red sole for 1 million dollars in damages and to order YSL to halt production of all red soled shoes in production.  Louboutin asked YSL to refrain from using red soles in january of 2010 and did not receive a response. Louboutin spoke out to the evening standard saying,
"  My company has a trademark on the red sole and if we don't enforce it this would leave the door open for other brands to copy us while jeopardising the identity of the Louboutin red sole.  The red sole has become widely recognised as the distinct sign of my brand in the eyes of women all over the world."  
YSL fired back saying, 
"Red outsoles are a commonly used ornamental design feature in footwear, dating as far back as the red shoes worn by King Louis XIV in the 1600s and the ruby red shoes that carried Dorothy home in The Wizard of Oz," ."

this response, to me, seems a bit juvenile.  they are scraping to make a case by bringing up Elizabethan era garb and cinematic glittered ruby red shoes, i dont feel this is a great comparison to the topic at hand.  with no decision made, Louboutin requested for an injunction in August to stop the sales of YSL's red soled shoes.  Judge Victor Marrero denied this injection, which wasnt good news for Louboutin.  The Judge stated,

"Because in the fashion industry colour serves ornamental and aesthetic functions vital to robust competition, the court finds that Louboutin is unlikely to be able to prove that its red outsole brand is entitled to trademark protection,"
Tiffany and Co flew in, with their turquoise blue cape on, stating that a color- like its own distinct unmistakable blue boxes can be trademarked and not be copied.  This strengthens the case of Louboutin's argument and has made the company very happy that Tiffanys has weighed in.  Louboutins fear is that fast fashion retailers will start mixing up vats of red dye and paint the town red .... and every sole that walks in it. 
 Louboutin filed an appeal against the court's decision not to grant an injunction stopping YSL's production of red soled shoes.  in a traditional diva like fashion, YSL has filed an appellate brief on tuesday, january 3rd, YSL fired back with a appellate brief in response to Loubs appeal of the court ruling. 

these shoes are coveted and adorned by any one who wears them or wishes they could.  the red cloud that is walked on has a special meaning behind them that no other shoes has.   besides, who wants to do a double take of a forever 21 knock-off?  with this ruling, i wonder where we will see red soled shoes next?

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