In December 2016, Gucci attempted to sue the fast fashion retailer for selling products with red, green and blue stripes that are eerily similar to their signature designs. The brand issued a cease-and-desist letter demanding that Forever 21 remove the products.
A Gucci spokesperson said, “Forever 21 is attempting to attack some of Gucci’s most famous and iconic trademarks.”
But Forever 21 recently made a strong case that its clothing does not infringe the Gucci trademark, and is now trying to sue Gucci. Talk about the ultimate role reversal. Here are 10 facts to know about the case.
1. Forever 21 is calling for Gucci to relinquish its trademarks, so they will no longer have the rights to their signature stripes.
2. According to The Fashion Law, Forever 21’s argument states, “Many clothing and accessory items adorned with decorative stripes colored blue-red-blue or green-red-green are sold by countless third parties … The colors red, blue, and green, and stripe designs, are among the most favorite, popular and widely used colors and design features on clothing.”
3. The retailer essentially argues that Gucci should not have legal ownership of these striped color combinations on the grounds that they are nothing unique and have been used in designs sold by many other retailers.
4. For Gucci to win the case, Forever 21 would have to be found guilty of trademark infringement, in which consumers would be mislead into believing Gucci was involved in the creation of the products.
5. Forever 21 rests its case, claiming, “Consumers are not likely to be confused into believing the Striped Products sold in Forever 21’s stores by Forever 21 are manufactured by, sponsored by, authorized by, or otherwise associated or affiliated with Gucci.”
The lawsuit was filed Monday, June 26, 2017 in California’s district court.