Kate Spade has been served with a $1 million-plus lawsuit for allegedly copying late designer Vera Neumann‘s designs.
On Tuesday, Neumann’s estate filed a suit in Manhattan claiming that Spade copied her famous 1979 “poppy field” design. For context, Neumann’s print is shown on the left, while Spade’s is on the right.
Page Six points out that Spade raved about Neumann’s floral prints in her 2004 tome Style by Kate Spade: “When Vera made scarves, there was nothing cutesy about them. They always made you feel happy.” Neumann’s estate alleges that Spade took the inspiration too literally:
“Kate Spade has indicated, at least several years ago, that among the items and products that have inspired her designs are the silk-screened scarves of Vera.”
The estate is reportedly asking for an excess of $1 million plus interest, which includes all the profits from Spade’s sale of infringing items and the cost of legal fees. They also want Spade to turn over the remaining stock of infringing products and the equipment used to make the design. Reps for Spade have not yet commented on the suit.