Shoe Designer Jeffrey Campbell Sues Forever 21 For Copying Six Shoe Styles

Los Angeles, CA – Following the trend of fashion designers filing trade dress infringement lawsuits to protect designs not covered by copyright law, Jeffrey Campbell is suing Forever 21 for allegedly copying six shoe designs. Like Givenchy v. BCBG and Marc Jacobs v. Christian Audigier before it, Jeffrey Campbell is forced to use trade dress law to protect its designs because copyright law views fashion products, for example pursues and shoes, as useful articles that cannot be copyrighted. Unlike UGG, however, many fashion designers are unaware that fashion designs can be protected through design patents, which must be filed within one year of the design’s public disclosure. Without a design patent, Jeffrey Campbell must now attempt the tougher climb of proving trade dress infringement.


Jeffrey Campbell claims that its shoe designs “have become the footwear brand to know in the United States” over the last ten years and that customers, based on extensive marketing and advertising, recognize the shoe designs as Jeffrey Campbell’s trade dress. Plaintiff contends that Forever 21, “having a business model that . . . focuses on selling knockoffs or cheaper copies of products designed by higher-end fashion companies,” has intentionally copied the Cast Sandal, 99 Boot, Splendid Sandal, City Wrap Boot, Alicia Fur Boot, and Swansong Sandal. Jeffrey Campbell also asserts that Forever 21’s intentional copying violates federal and state unfair competition laws. The amount of monetary damages are currently unknown to Plaintiff, but it is also seeking a permanent injunction to prevent Forever 21’s future sales of the shoe designs.

The case is Jeffrey Campbell LLC v. Forever 21, Inc., CV11-04619 SJO (C.D. Cal. 2011).


3 responses to “Shoe Designer Jeffrey Campbell Sues Forever 21 For Copying Six Shoe Styles”

  1. Agusta Yr says:

    I have seen so many shoes from F21 look exactly like Campbells shoes!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I once interviewed for a shoe design job at F21… after 3 interviews and 2 projects (of ORIGINAL DESIGNS, NOT COPIES OF OTHER DESIGNERS!) I was told I would need to come back for a 4th interview because the President was stuck in a meeting. Then they took my portfolio out of the interview room for about 30 minutes to supposedly run it by the infamous “Mrs. Chang.” I can only assume it took them that long to scan all my designs into their files for future use… all free of charge. A few days later I was told my designs were “too high end,” I guess hoping a compliment would end the situation pleasantly. But I wasn’t born yesterday… They are criminals and should be prosecuted for their theft, rudeness and for their overall disgracefulness to the entire fashion industry. (Oh, and this interview situation happened to at least 3 other people I spoke with… the big design projects, then taking the portfolio out of the room… I guess that’s their trick for getting free new inspiration when they are getting busted for copying big names.)

  3. Natalie says:

    Isnt this a case of the pot calling teh kettle black . Don’t get me wrong , I love Jeffrey campbell shoes . I have dozens of them and will continue to buy more. But many of Jeffrey campbell designs are rip off of higher end designs as well. Just take for instance the Tardy boots ,it looks like a dead ringer for the chloe boot check it out on this blog page Well what would u say about that ? that Jeffrey campbell has a more friendly price tag .. I love jc shoes , but i’d just say , Jc shoes have been copying some designs from teh runway for sometime and there no need to be so uptight if u are doing the same.