In the cutthroat fashion industry, design houses have found more ways to sharpen their blades and corner more sections of the market. High street brands are increasingly diversifying by creating a poorer sister brand – we’ve seen it with See by Chloe and Alexander Wang for H&M, plus more. ‘Nasty Gal’ saw dollar signs when Taylor Swift recently attended an awards event sporting their white jumpsuit design, retailing for $45. Swiftly grabbing glory on social media, it all came tumbling down when Tay Tay confirmed that she was wearing high-fashion house Balmain’s design (retailing for $2,000), not Nasty Gal’s. If you want to register a design, this article will give you some tips and pointers.
How can I avoid such embarrassing faux-pas? Protect your design!
A design is protected if it is registered under this act. To register a design, you need to meet a few requirements.
A design is registrable if the design is new and distinctive when compared with the ‘prior art’ base for a design as it existed before the priority date of the design. The prior art base consists of designs publicly listed in Australia and those published in a document within or outside Australia.
What exactly is a ‘design’?
A design, in relation to a product, means the overall appearance of the product resulting from one or more visual features of the product.
Suggestions for protecting your design
- Do your research. Before you even think of registering your design, make sure yours does not infringe on an already existing design registration.
- Confidentiality is your best friend. Keep your precious design a secret until it is registered. Don’t show it, don’t upload it, post about it or sell it. If you don’t keep it secret, you can’t register.
- Spreading the word. After (and only after) you have successfully registered your design, make sure you advertise the fact that you have a registered design by including the words “registered design” on swing tags or other labels.
To register a design, get in touch with the design registration experts at LegalVision. We have IP lawyers with a wealth of experience in trade marks and design registration, who will provide you with a fixed-fee quote to assist.