Valentino sues Steve Madden for copyright infringement
Valentino filed the lawsuit in Georgia federal court last week. In its complaint, it alleges Steve Madden has copied its "double purse design" comprised of “a two-dimensional design that it applied to a handbag".
Valentino also claims Steve Madden knocked off its copyrighted "camubutterfly" purse strap that looks like a guitar strap. According to the complaint, Valentino's handbag design retails for approximately $1,500 and the strap for almost $900. Steve Madden sold its 'knockoff' designs, called the "Bluxury" and "Hs-Fly," for significantly less.
The short complaint alleges that "Valentino did not authorize any reproduction or distribution of the double purse design and camubutterfly strap design."
Steve Madden is no stranger to copyright lawsuits. The company is frequently pulled into court for copyright infringements, and Valentino joins a list of retailers trying to keep Steve Madden in check. Last year Steve Madden settled a case with rival knockoff brand Skechers who alleged Steve Madden used elements from its casual walking shoe the Go Walk for Madden's Setta campaign.
Stella McCartney Ltd. also settled a suit last year where Steve Madden produced a handbag similar to a McCartney model. The trade dress and design patent suit was resolved after Stella McCartney alleged that Steve Madden's "Btotally" bag was a “nearly identical” version of the Falabella bag that copied “every key element."
Dr. Martens is currently suing Steve Madden for knocking off a footwear design of the iconic Dr. Marten boot. The suit was filed in February when Dr. Martens alleged Steve Madden copied the "distinctive trade dress” of the shoe including the iconic sole and stitching of their boots.
In anticipation of litigation, the Bluxury and Hs-Fly have already been taken down from Steve Madden's website.
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