4 January 2018Copyright

Spanx hit with Sleevey Wonders IP claims

Sleeve developer R and A Synergy has filed a claim against shapewear manufacturer Spanx for trade dress and copyright infringement.

The claim (pdf) was filed in the US District Court for the Central District of California on December 21, 2017.

R and A develops and sells slip-on sleeves, made to wear under sleeveless or strapless dresses. The clothing company has been active since 2011.

Spanx, founded in 2000, is a manufacturer of undergarments and clothing items relating to shapewear.

R and A alleged that between 2008 and 2011, its research and development focused on a unique layering garment called Sleevey Wonders. A trademark was filed under number 3,890,712 in 2009 and the sleeve developer subsequently filed a series of utility and design patents relating to sleeve styles. In 2011, was launched.

“Prior to the launch of the Sleevey Wonders under sleeves, no category of garment existed for slip on sleeves made to wear under sleeveless and strapless tops and dresses that give the appearance of being part of the outergarment with which them are worn,” the claim stated.

R and A alleged that in 2013, the assistant to the CEO of Spanx ordered two Sleevey Wonders to be delivered directly to the Spanx headquarters. In 2017 the shapewear company released new products called Sheer Fashion and Arm Tights, which are at the centre of the case.

According to R and A, the “products are sold as layering pieces to be worn under sleeveless garments” and are “indistinguishable in appearance to the Sleevey Wonders”.

R and A is claiming copyright infringement, trade dress infringement, unfair competition, and false advertising. The sleeve developer is seeking injunctive relief as well as triple damages and profits.

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