Legally Yours. Givenchy Slams BCBG with Handbag Lawsuit

November 16, 2010 • Fashion



Givenchy's Nightingale handbag

The bag wars are indeed an ugly game. Luxury house Givenchy filed a federal lawsuit against BCBG Max Azria Group Inc., alleging that its Nightingale bag, retailing for $2,175, is the object of trade dress infringement by contemporary line BCBGeneration’s Rembrandt bag, which retailed for $118 (but is no longer available for sale).

Givenchy said it has earned more than $50 million in revenue from the sale of the Nightingale bags. The lawsuit accused BCBG of trying to profit by selling “its knockoff Rembrandt and other handbags that deliberately copy, line-by-line and stitch-by-stitch, distinctive, nonfunctional elements of Givenchy’s Nightingale Trade Dress.” A BCBG spokesman fired back, stating, “BCBG Max Azria is confident that Givenchy’s claims are meritless, and intends to defend the matter vigorously.”

The 26-page complaint filed by Givenchy claims that BCBG “unlawfully copies and imitates” the Givenchy bag and that the BCBGeneration bags are “likely to cause consumers, the public and the trade to erroneously believe that [they]…are authorized, sponsored and/or approved by Givenchy when, in fact, they are not.” Givenchy said its Nightingale trade dress “includes, without limitation, a removable strap, two double-seamed handles, a flat bottom and decorative double-stitched horizontal and vertical stripes on the exterior that visually separate the bag into four distinct quadrants,” noting that BCBG's Rembrandt bag contains all the same structural elements. Givenchy is seeking monetary damages, as well as an injunction prohibiting further sales of BCBGeneration’s handbags. The gloves have officially come off!

Article and Photo Source: WWD

-Alia Rajput

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