Handbag designer Monica Botkier has filed a cease and desist order against department chain Sears, alleging that their Kardashian Kollection purse line was a knock-off of one of her original — and most iconic — bag silhouettes.
On Wednesday, the designer took to her blog to call out the bag in question in a post entitled "K is for Knock-Off" — a clear copy of her own "Clyde" style — before filing a public cease and desist letter against the brand.
"In the past, the plagiarized bags were [sometimes] removed from a line, but often, nothing happens," Botkier tells The Feast. The designer is no stranger to copycat designers and pirated pieces. "In this case, with the Kardashians involved, they have such widespread popularity, so people are really noticing what's going on. In the past, if it's just in a store, maybe you'd miss it."
Botkier didn't seem too concerned with this current case affecting sales, but she's hopeful that it will have an industry-wide effect: Currently, the Council of Fashion Designers of America are leading a charge to better define the difference between design inspiration and an outright knock-off.
"Botkier bags are instantly recognizable," she tels The Feast. "The current laws are too technical: a zipper may be so many inches from a seam, but aesthetic can't be measured ... With design and aesthetic, you can't put your finger on it, but you can so obviously see that it goes beyond inspiration, and it's been plagiarized. There are so many degrees of getting inspired versus plagiarizing a design."
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