Footwear maestro Christian Louboutin touched down in Beverly Hills recently for a personal appearance at Neiman Marcus to celebrate the 20th anniversary of his business and the new, limited-edition capsule collection of shoes and bags he is launching to mark the occasion.
In a legal battle over red soles, luxe shoe brand Christian Louboutin won a limited victory over design house Yves Saint Laurent when an appeals court granted trademark protection for some of its footwear with lacquered red bottoms. The U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan overturned a lower-court decision by deciding that Christian Louboutin boots that have red soles combined with a different colored top are protected under trademark, while a shoe design that is red all over cannot be protected.
The New York-based 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that Christian Louboutin boots may prevent other fashion houses from copying his distinct use of a red, lacquered outsole on a high-heel shoe of a different color, described by the court as an identifying mark firmly associated with his brand. We hold that the lacquered red outsole, as applied to a shoe with an 'upper' of a different color, has 'come to identify and distinguish' the Louboutin brand and is therefore a distinctive symbol that qualifies for trademark protection, the court said, overturning a lower court's decision.