As promised, Christian Louboutin's lawyer is fighting tooth and nail against YSL's push to have the red-sole trademark canceled entirely. After Judge Victor Marrero ruled in favor of YSL's right to create and sell red-soled shoes last Wednesday, YSL's lawyer David Bernstein said that he would pursue a summary judgement to repeal Louboutin's trademark. He'll face Louboutin's lawyer Harley Lewin before Judge Marrero again on Friday to argue whether the motion can continue.
Judge Marrero will mostly likely side with YSL again. In his initial ruling last week, he stated that "Louboutin is unlikely to be able to prove that its red outsole brand is entitled to trademark protection," since "in the fashion industry color serves ornamental and aesthetic functions vital to robust competition." He also would have anticipated YSL's move cancel the trademark, as it's a logical next step from his decision to deny Louboutin's injunction.
What's also clear is that Louboutin's lawyer will "fight like hell," as Lewin stated himself. He's already appealed the judge's ruling, and vowed to appeal any forthcoming decisions endangering the trademark. Susan Scafidi, director of Fordham University’s Fashion Law Institute, tells WWD:
Louboutin’s nightmare is that every fast-fashion retailer will begin stirring up vats of red dye because it believes the trademark is officially canceled or is about to be ... Louboutin stands to lose so much. This is identity theft for him. Those red soles are almost as recognizable as his name.
But retail consultant Hana Ben-Shabat presents a valid counterpoint:
At the end of the day, what makes a Louboutin a Louboutin is the fact that the shoes are beautifully made and beautifully crafted. And those who want to be associated with the brand want to be a part of that.