Fashion Design

News & Analysis as of

Supreme Court Holds Cheerleader Uniform Designs Are Copyrightable

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court held that decorative designs affixed to cheerleader uniforms may be entitled to copyright protection under the Copyright Act of 1976. The decision determined the proper approach to...more

Supreme Court Rules Cheerleading Uniform Designs Are Copyrightable

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court held in Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc. that design elements of cheerleading uniforms may be protected under the Copyright Act. The 6-2 decision, written by Justice Thomas,...more

Copyright protection available to surface ornamentation of cheerleader’s uniforms: Star Athletica v Varsity Brands

On March 22, 2017, the United States Supreme Court in the case of Star Athletica LLC v Varsity Brands LLC affirmed a decision of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals that copyright protection could exist in surface...more

Supreme Court Affirms That Designs Of Cheerleading Uniforms Are Copyrightable

As we previously blogged, the Sixth Circuit held in 2015, that the colors, stripes, chevrons, and similar graphic designs of the plaintiff’s cheerleading uniforms “are copyrightable pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works”...more

These Boots Are Made For Walkin’: Trade Dress and the Distinctive Look of a Boot Sole

Airwair, the owner of the Dr. Martens brand, recently launched a series of lawsuits in the Northern District of California to enforce the trade dress of its “iconic boots and shoes.” One lawsuit was filed in October against...more

SCOTUS Agrees that Cheerleading Uniform Designs Are Eligible for Copyright Protection

In a 6-2 decision authored by Justice Thomas, the US Supreme Court has now provided guidance as to whether aesthetic designs, such as stripes, chevrons, zigzags and color blocks of a cheerleading uniform are eligible for...more

Supreme Court Decision Arms Clothing Designers with ‘Powerful Tool’

As a result of a recent Supreme Court decision, clothing designers are expected to have an easier time stopping others from copying their original designs. On Wednesday, March 22, the Supreme Court issued guidelines to...more

Cheering on the Fashion Industry: U.S. Supreme Court Issues Landmark Copyright Decision That Will Have Deep Implications for...

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court decided that federal copyright protection applies to cheerleading-apparel designs. The decision, which has far-reaching implications for the fashion and sports industries, sets a new and...more

Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands, Inc. Copyright Case

Seyfarth Synopsis: On March 22, 2017, the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in the Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands, Inc. case, affirming and holding that “a feature incorporated into the design of a ...more

Supreme Court Finds Cheerleading Uniform Designs Copyrightable

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court held in Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc. that designs on cheerleading uniforms may be protectable under the Copyright Act. The Court's 6-2 decision, clarifying the...more

Varsity Brands Earns Hard-Fought Win in Supreme Court Ruling Designs on Cheerleading Uniforms Are Copyrightable

The United States Supreme Court, in the case Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc., et al., Case No. 15-866, ruled in a 6-2 opinion that two-dimensional designs incorporated onto three-dimensional useful articles (here,...more

Two Bits, Four Bits, Six Bits, a Dollar, Cheer Uniforms are Copyrightable, Stand Up and Holler!

In Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc., (2017), the Supreme Court affirmed the Sixth Circuit that the two dimensional designs appearing on the surface of Varsity’s cheerleader uniforms were copyrightable....more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Decorative Elements Can Be Copyrighted

On Wednesday, March 22, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 6 to 2 decision, affirmed a decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in favor of Varsity Brands, Inc., et al. (Varsity). The Supreme Court...more

Be Aggressive, B-E Aggressive – SCOTUS Encourages IP Plaintiffs

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court decided two much anticipated intellectual property cases. Supreme Court Rejects Laches in Patent Infringement Cases - The first, SCA Hygiene Products Aktiebolag et al. v. First Quality...more

SCOTUS Finds Cheerleader Designs Copyrightable

In a highly anticipated decision, the Supreme Court of the United States held on March 22, 2017 that the “pictorial, graphic or sculptural features” of the “design of a useful article” can be protected by copyright under...more

Supreme Court Decides Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc.

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court of the United States decided Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc., No. 15-866, holding that artistic designs on cheerleading uniforms were eligible for copyright...more

“Knock-Offs” Beware: SCOTUS Makes a Fashion-Forward Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court has settled the closely watched Varsity Brands Inc. et al. v. Star Athletica LLC copyright dispute, holding that cheerleading outfits contain distinct design elements that allow for copyright ownership....more

SCOTUS Determines That Decorations on Cheerleading Uniforms Are Conceptually Separable From Uniforms and Eligible For Copyright...

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a 6-2 ruling in Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc., et al., holding the decorative elements on Varsity Brands’ cheerleading uniforms were...more

Supreme Court Outlines New Test for Copyrightability of Useful Articles

The Supreme Court’s ruling in Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc. significantly expands copyright protection for useful articles. On March 22, 2017, the US Supreme Court set out a new standard for copyrightability...more

Supreme Court Clarifies Copyright Protection for Artistic Features in Clothing

On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court held that a two- or three-dimensional work of art on a useful article, such as clothing, is protectable under copyright law if: (1) the work of art can be perceived as separate from the...more

Client Alert: Supreme Court Finds Cheerleading Uniforms Copyrightable in Landmark Apparel Copyright Case

In the first apparel copyright case ever considered by the U.S. Supreme Court, Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc., the high court found on March 22, 2017 that decorative elements of a cheerleading uniform could be...more

Give me…“Separability!” Supreme Court Holds Cheerleading Uniform Designs Copyrightable

The Supreme Court, in Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc., 580 U.S. ___ (2017), resolved “widespread disagreement” among the circuits, and adopted a single test to determine the copyrightability of designs...more

Three Stripes and You’re Out

On March 17, Adidas American, Inc. sued Juicy Couture, Inc., in the District of Oregon (3:17-cv-00437), alleging trademark infringement, unfair competition, trademark dilution, deceptive trade practices, and breach of...more

Hip, Hip, Hooray for Copyrightable Decorative Elements

After months of standing on the sidelines of the most closely watched case impacting the fashion industry in recent years, legal practitioners and fashion designers now have a framework for protecting decorative elements of...more

United States Supreme Court Confirms Works of Art Incorporated Into Useful Articles Are Protected Under Copyright Law

Copyright law has long provided protection for original works of art. There has been some uncertainty as to whether this protection is extended to artistic features that are incorporated into useful articles, which are not...more

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