Levi's is suing Italian luxury fashion brand Brunello Cucinelli over allegedly infringing on the American brand's trademarked rectangular tab that often adorns the back pocket of its jeans and other products.
On Tuesday, Levi's filed the complaint for trademark infringement, dilution and unfair competition in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. It includes 14 photos of Brunello Cucinelli garments that feature what is described as a "nearly identical copy" of the Levi's tab. One of the submitted photos referred to a product titled "Authentic denim baggy trousers with shiny tab" on Brunello Cucinelli's website, which includes the tab in question (and retails for $1,695).
Levi's complaint claims that the Italian brand's use of a similar tab could "confuse consumers" and cause "incalculable and irreparable damage to [Levi's] goodwill, reputation and standing with consumers, licensees and collaborators."
The Levi's tab is often red, but it has also appeared in a variety of colors such as white, blue, black, silver, gold and orange. Based on the photos Levi's included within the lawsuit, the Brunello Cucinelli tab appears brown or grey in color and in similar placements as the Levi's tab, such as the back pockets of jeans and on shirt pockets.
Levi's said the brand first adopted its tab trademark in 1936, registered the mark in 1938 and has at times used the tab within its logo and retail signage.
The lawsuit requests that Brunello Cucinelli halt its "misuse and trade on Levi's famous trademarks" with the allegedly infringing products, and demands a jury trial.
Representatives for both Levi's and Brunello Cucinelli did not immediately respond to Fashionista's request for comment. We will update this story as we learn more.