10 January 2018Copyright

Victoria’s Secret accused of TM infringement with Love promotion

Premium lingerie designer Victoria’s Secret is being sued by fashion and lifestyle brand Love Made for infringing the trademark ‘Love Made Me Do It’.

The complaint (pdf) was filed at the US District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division, on Thursday, January 4.

Love Made is a California-based clothing line conducting business under the trade name Love Made Me Do it and Love Made for short. Most of the products sold by Love Made since 2013 feature one of these phrases.

Victoria’s Secret, founded in 1977, is a US designer and manufacturer of premium lingerie and accessories.

‘Love Made Me Do It’ is recognised by US trademark registration number 87,026,949 in international class 25 for “baby bodysuits; baby bottoms; baby tops; bats; bottoms; hoods; jackets; jerseys; sports caps and hats; stocking hats; tops.”

The claim states that a primary brand identifier for Love Made is an image of a neon sign reading “Love Made Me Do It”, notable for block letters, unpolished feel, and vertical orientation. The imagery of the sign is a signature element of Love Made’s brand identity.

The sign, created in 2013, “constitutes copyrightable subject matter as an original sculptural work”, according to the complaint. Love Made registered copyright in its sign in 2017 as registration number VA 2-078-624, according to the claim.

In 2017 Victoria’s Secret started using the mark ‘Love Made Me Do It’ as a source identifier in promotional material for its new fragrance, Love.

“Even more outrageously, defendant uses images of a neon sign reading ‘Love Made Me Do It’ in its marketing and merchandising,” according to the complaint. Love Made is claiming relief for trademark infringement, copyright infringement, and unfair competition.

Jeff Gluck of Gluck Law, who represents Love Made in this matter, said to WIPR: "The allegations and images speak for themselves. Linda has filed this lawsuit to stand up for her work and hopes to inspire other artists and designers to do the same".

Love Made is seeking damages, including pre-judgment interest, and an order permanently enjoining Victoria’s Secret from the allegedly infringing activities. The clothing brand also requests that the lingerie designer recalls and removes the goods containing the mark ‘Love Made Me Do It’.

Victoria’s Secret has been embroiled in several IP battles over the past few years.

In 2016 Victoria’s Secret settled a suit brought by fashion company Zephrys for allegedly infringing Zephrys’ patent which covers a kidney shaped insert used inside bras intended “to create lift and cleavage while maintaining a natural appearance”, WIPR reported.

The year before, the lingerie designer pulled out of a trademark battle with US entrepreneur Rebekah Doolittle, who had attempted to register a trademark for her shop The Pink Store, as covered on WIPR.

In 2014 UK shirt maker Thomas Pink won a trademark battle with Victoria’s Secret over the use of the word ‘pink’ in clothing branding, WIPR reported.

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More on this story

31 July 2014   UK shirt maker Thomas Pink has won a trademark battle against lingerie company Victoria’s Secret over the use of the word ‘pink’.
2 February 2016   A US fashion company has claimed that kidney shaped inserts used in bras sold by underwear brand Victoria’s Secret infringe its patent.
5 August 2021   The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has upheld a Texas court ruling that an online subsidiary of Victoria’s Secret cannot be sued for patent infringement in the state.