Striped Shoes Can't Be Trademarked, Tommy Hilfiger Says

Law360, New York (September 12, 2013, 9:22 PM EDT) -- Tommy Hilfiger USA Inc. asked a New York federal judge on Wednesday to declare that the company behind footwear brand Charles Philip cannot trademark patterned vertical stripes and must stop threatening to sue Hilfiger over the interior of its shoes.

In its suit against Jumbo Bright Trading Ltd., Hilfiger asked the court to bar the Hong Kong-based company from sending cease-and-desist letters claiming that Hilfiger's "Ithaca stripe" violates two of its pending trademarks for vertical stripe patterns. Hilfiger claims the stripes — which have been used for "many years" on the inside of Hilfiger shoes — cannot be trademarked because they...

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