We hate to say it, but we agree with this ruling. According to WWD, a Manhattan federal judge has ruled in favor of Dooney & Bourke in a four-year trademark battle with Louis Vuitton.
In its April 2004 complaint, the division
of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton alleged that Dooney & Bourke’s
"It Bag" line featuring a DB monogram infringed on its Monogram
Multicolore handbag collection, which has a colorful LV monogram and
was a collaboration with artist Takashi Murakami. Much of the judge’s
54-page opinion dealt with whether the monograms could be mistaken for
introduced bags featuring its LV design in the "Murakami colors" in
October 2002. By late 2006, sales reached almost
$145 million, court papers said. Prices range from less than $150 for a
mirror case and reach into the thousands.
In 2003, Dooney &
Bourke introduced the "It Bag," which also featured a colorful monogram
logo. The bag retailed for less than $50 up to the hundreds. By late
2006, the line had generated sales of more than $100 million.
Judge Shira Scheindlin ruled Dooney & Bourke’s "It
Bag" monogram design did not infringe on Vuitton’s Monograme
Multicolore handbag collection.
Although she acknowledged the similarities between the
two designs, Scheindlin noted Vuitton’s LV mark used a larger font size
and consisted of "a combination of letters and shapes," while the
Dooney & Bourke design featured an unadorned DB.
Vuitton said it would appeal the ruling.