Tiffany Defends Louboutin In YSL Trademark Case

As it turns out, baby blue and bright red are a color match made in heaven. Well, legal heaven, anyway. Tiffany & Co. on Tuesday filed a brief in support of Christian Louboutin‘s red-sole trademark lawsuit against Yves Saint Laurent.

The brief, called an amicus curiae, backs up Louboutin’s appeal to reverse Judge Victor Marrero‘s decision not to grant a preliminary injunction against YSL’s sales of a red-soled shoe. Louboutin sued the French fashion house this April, claiming that YSL’s red-soled shoes violated the trademark on red soles it got in 2008.

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Marrero wrote in his decision “Because in the fashion industry color serves ornamental and aesthetic functions vital to robust competition … Louboutin is unlikely to be able to prove that its red outsole brand is entitled to trademark protection.” Women’s Wear Daily reports that Tiffany’s lawyers, who have held the brand’s signature baby blue packaging as a trademark since 1998, are worried that Marrero’s decision could be “overly broad” and might cause them some issues in the future.

“Tiffany is not taking sides in this dispute,” said Tiffany attorney Jason Jones, of Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu PC, the firm coincidentally responsible for registering Louboutin’s red-sole mark. “We are only trying to assure that this area of the law is not disturbed by an overbroad decision in the lower court.”

Right — and they’re trying to make sure their packaging or brand identity doesn’t get disturbed, either. Also worth noting: The International Trademark Association on Monday asked for more time to file their own brief in support of Tiffany. Because it takes a village.

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Whether or not the two briefs will hold any sway over Marrero’s decisions remains to be seen. For now, the Louboutin camp says it’s “enormously pleased” to have the support. And to be quite honest, we would be, too.


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