Valentino Jumps In To The Great Red-Soled Shoe Debate

In the long, painful saga that is Christian Louboutin‘s trademark infringement lawsuit against Yves Saint Laurent, much has been said of the fact that cobblers had been making red soles centuries before Loubs started featuring them in the 1990s. But Valentino Garavani, the Italian couturier perhaps best known by his first name, used them as recently as the 80s — and no one really cared much then.

Giancarlo Giametti, Valentino’s longtime partner (in business and in life), told Women’s Wear Daily that that the couturier made a red-soled shoe in 1969. (He is now, if he wasn’t then, famous for his red dresses.) He did it again in 1983, and added rhinestones and fabric panels that matched the his dresses to the bottoms of the shoes.

But while Louboutin’s trademark might not be original, it is still his trademark — a quick search on the United States Patent and Trademark office’s website will clear that up quite nicely. A judge is expected to decide whether or not to grant a preliminary injunction that would stop YSL from selling its own red-soled shoes, and we’ll let you know when the decision is handed down.


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