It’s not exactly a shock that mall-infamous apparel brand Forever 21 is being sued over copyright issues. The company’s success is firmly rooted in marketing pieces that bear more than a passing resemblance to popular high-end brands.
However, Forever 21 has decided to bring in some firepower of their own. .
It all started back in December when Gucci forwarded multiple cease-and-desist letters to F21 to prevent them from producing and selling clothing or accessories bearing Gucci’s stripes.
Gucci has held federal trademark protections on the stripes since the 80’s.
After Gucci’s first strike, Forever 21 swung back by asking a California court to grant them the privilege to sell items with the stripe pattern. The suit goes as far as to
ask the court to remove Gucci’s trademarks over the stripes.
Grab your popcorn, ladies and gents, because this is a battle over the stripes.
“Many clothing and accessory items adorned with decorative stripes […] are sold by countless third parties. Gucci should not be allowed to claim that Gucci, alone, has a monopoly on all blue-red-blue and green-red-green striped clothing and accessory items,” Forever 21 stated, as well as calling itself an “American success story.”
The clothing company also mentions that they the items they sell with Gucci’s stripes isn’t their collaboration with the high-end brand:
“Consumers are not likely to be confused into believing the striped products sold in Forever 21’s stores are […] affiliated with Gucci.”
Even though Gucci technically owns their famous stripes, Forever 21 is allowing shoppers to buy similar items to the luxury brand if they cannot afford the real thing. Perhaps Forever 21 is doing the right thing — or perhaps they’re breaking the rules.