Cotton on Clothing Australia

Cotton On sued over ‘knock-off’ shirts

Coca cola is fighting to trademark the word 'zero' to be used in its diet companies. After 13 years, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office are close to making a ruling. WSJ's Mike Esterl states on luncheon break with Tanya Rivero. Picture: Getty

Through the roads of Soho to your shelves of fast manner store Cotton On.

AUSTRALIAN retail monster Cotton On is within the limelight once more, with a pending lawsuit placing the organization’s design practices under renewed scrutiny.

Ny designer Elektra Printz Gorski is suing the retailer when you look at the Federal legal for presumably “knocking off” the woman trademarked fashion brand name, LETTUCE TURNIP THE BEET.

The number of tees and tank tops bearing the quirky pun attained a cult following after Gorski began selling them from the roads of Soho, with fans including Madonna and also the stars regarding the genuine Housewives of brand new York.

After receiving a tip-off that the same shirt had been sold at Cotton On shops in Australian Continent and brand new Zealand, Gorski embarked on which is shaping up to be an expensive appropriate workout when it comes to only investor. She states the Cotton upon Group is just one of the garments makers to presumably duplicate her work, with brand name researchers trawling Pinterest for styles to mimic.

Gorski claims the Cotton On shirt is “clearly” a duplicate of her original design, pictured kept.“It’s annoying to possess big corporations constantly knocking off my brand since the time, cash, and energy i really could be placing into enhancing my company has-been put in litigation within the last two-and-a-half years, ” Gorski told

“The manufacturers at corporations think it is easier to duplicate a preexisting popular design than to take the danger of coming up with a new one entirely.”

Gorski claims the Cotton On top is “clearly” a duplicate of her initial design, pictured left.Source:Supplied

The Cotton upon Group denies copying Gorski’s work, despite the fact that a senior fashion designer used by the business seems to have pinned a LETTUCE TURNIP THE BEET shirt on the Pinterest account prior to the product becoming manufactured and offered by the organization.

On her LinkedIn profile, the visual fashion designer described her duties with all the business as including “trend study” and pinpointing “opportunities that are of value on larger business”.

Gorski has screen shots of numerous Pinterest people, considered to be Cotton On staff members, pinning various slogan t-shirts as “inspiration”. One user changed her title and profile picture with what Gorski feels are an attempt to fly underneath the radar.

Gorski said there is no excuse for Cotton onto continue to be ignorant about her rights on the brand name, whenever “it takes 1 minute to operate a ‘slogan’ through publicly accessible Australian trademark database”.

But, she said, many small operators could not afford to accept huge corporations like Cotton On in courtroom, facing legal fees that may run into the thousands and thousands of bucks. Gorski’s instance with Cotton upon happens to be set-down for mediation in August.


Boutique manner developers come in a difficult place in terms of protecting their particular work, because the social networking sites they rely on to market on their own supply a treasure-trove of a few ideas when it comes to big retailers.

Melbourne designer Andrea Goulding described social networking as “a double-edged sword”, offering as a powerful advertising device for her brand name, whilst providing quick style retailers with a prepared source of determination.

Cotton On’s solicitors said in a letter to Gorski that the worker who pinned the woman top on Pinterest was not the fashion designer responsible for the disputed product, and that the one who was “had no familiarity with you or your business”.

A spokeswoman when it comes to merchant stated in a declaration: “The Cotton On Group has got the upmost value for work of all specific designers and contains a zero threshold way of the flagrant copying of designers.

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