LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Playboy Enterprises filed suit in federal court Tuesday against Fashion Nova, alleging the Los Angeles-area online apparel company is selling knock-offs of its signature bunny costume for Halloween.
Playboy alleges Fashion Nova’s version of their iconic Playboy Bunny outfit featuring a bowtie, strapless satin corset, bunny ears and white tail is an “attempt to confuse and mislead consumers,” according to the suit filed in Los Angeles federal court.
“Despite Playboy’s warning to Fashion Nova to cease and desist its unlawful behavior, Fashion Nova continues to market and sell” copies of “Playboy’s most valuable and well-recognized marks,” according to the lawsuit.
The outfits Fashion Nova sells under the names “Bunny of the Month 4-Piece Costume Set,” “Bunny Hop 3-Piece Costume Kit” and “Miss B Bunny Costume,” are “infringing products are materially indistinguishable from Playboy’s Bunny Costume,” the suit claims.
Fashion Nova’s business model “is built on disregarding trademark protections, which are of critical importance to Playboy’s brand,” the complaint for trademark infringement alleges. “By this lawsuit, Playboy seeks to protect its brand and put an end to Fashion Nova’s latest attempt to copy the famous designs and trademarks of others.”
Vernon-based Fashion Nova did not immediately respond for comment.
Fashion Nova was founded in 2006 as a chain of stores in Los Angeles-area malls that sold low-priced “clubwear.” The brand relaunched in 2013 as an e-commerce site that sells “fast-fashion” apparel.
Last year, Versace sued Fashion Nova in Los Angeles alleging the company was marketing copies and imitations of the Italian luxury brand’s most famous designs. A trial date was set and then vacated.
“Fashion Nova’s ability to churn out new clothing so quickly is due in large part to its willingness to copy the designs of other companies, piggybacking on their creative efforts to boost Fashion Nova’s bottom line,” Playboy Enterprises alleges.
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