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Louboutin and YSL ruling backs trademark red soles

Luxury footwear brand Christian Louboutin’s red sole has been protected after a court ruled the sole has trademark protection unless the entire shoe is red.

A New York court has said the French label’s red soles will be trademarked when the upper is contrasting, however totally red shoes will not be.

This means that YSL will be able to continue sell its red pumps, which originally sparked the courtcase.

This case has been long running. Louboutin first sued YSL in April, claiming that YSL had infringed the 2008 copyright on his trademark red-soled shoes by introducing red soles to its own footwear line. A temporary ban on the sale of the footwear was denied but lawyers for the footwear brand then appealed the decision.

With regards to the latest ruling a statement from Louboutin said: “We welcome the decision of the Court of Appeals and will study today’s ruling at great length.

“We are extremely pleased and gratified that the Appellate Court found our key arguments to be correct: first that colour can and does serve as a trademark in the fashion industry, and that Christian Louboutin’s world famous Red Sole trademark is valid, protectable and enforceable. 

“As we have said throughout these proceedings and we reiterate now, especially in the light of this decision, we will continue to take all steps available to protect our trademark.”

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