Does Jo-Ann Fabrics Deserve to Get Sued for This?

Does Jo-Ann Fabrics Deserve to Get Sued for This? (link takes you to The Cut)

Apparently, Coach is suing Jo-Ann Fabrics for copying thier trademark double C and putting it on fleece.

I’ve seen this in the store too….


    • I went looking at their fleece because I wanted to make warm winter pants for sleeping. It’s all so hiddy. Who needs all that fleece??

  1. The real question is, who on earth would want to buy it? I wouldn’t buy a coach bag with that print, so why would I buy the fleece? 🙂

    Jo-Ann is trying though – I’ve noticed a few fabrics lately that are nice – they have the Lisette fabric now. I was surprised.

  2. If it truly IS their logo, then they can and should sue (intellectual property and all). If they are just looking to put their name in the paper, they need to get a hobby.

  3. JoAnn’s should not be sued for this…. does Coach have nothing better to do? I would not buy one of their ugly purses with this logo on and certainly will not buy the fleece. But this is America…the land of (sueing) opportunity!

    The first thing that came to mind when I read your question was “Did McDonald’s deserve to be sued for serving hot coffee?” Ridiculous lawsuits are out there… unfortunately!

    • Just a note–the woman who sued McDonald’s over the hot coffee did so after numerous skin grafts. And, McDonalds had received over 700 complaints over the too hot coffee before this woman was injured. Others had been injured before. Not all lawsuits are frivolous–sometimes corporations and doctors are negligent!

      • Thank you, was just going to add what you wrote. That lady was injured!

        I like Joanne Fabrics. I am a newbie and they’re always so nice. We don’t have any other fabric store in GA.

      • The coffee story was different, most us costumers are/were used to coffee served colder than in the rest of the world – which was a huge (and winning) arguement.

        Does JoAnn deserve the complaint? I don’t think so – chances are that Coach could find similar fabric anywhere in the world – coloured letteres aren’t all that new in fashion

  4. Yeah, pretty obvious knock off. But why? Coach doesn’t make anything fleece. Besides, it’s fug to begin with.

  5. Yeah, right. As if Coach would make anything out of fleece and sell it in JoAnn. I think Bbinging suit is extreme, but if Coach wants to protect their brand, they have no choice but to sue.

  6. I’m going to have to go with no, I don’t think they deserve to be sued (or at least, Coach doesn’t deserve to win).

    The design doesn’t look like Coach’s logo- it’s ovals, not C’s. There are LOTS of geometric oval prints out there.

    And the case is based upon customer confusion that there is cause to believe this is an authentic Coach product, and thus dilutes the brand’s reputation. No one is going to think crappy, pilly, Joann’s fleece is a Coach product.

    • I have to second this. How many bags in Target carry a logo much more similar to the Coach logo? The Jo-Ann’s fabric is clearly “O”, not “C”. Besides, anyone that thinks Coach makes fleece fabric clearly hasn’t seen a Coach purse before (up close or in a catalog). My sister bought a Coach bag once and I wanted to slap her for spending $400 for a bag. Seriously, is it lined in gold? Will it print money? Then forget it.

  7. If you infringed on MY *trademarked* logo by printing it on that crap?! I’d sue the pants off of you. Petty as it may seem to some, it’s their right to do so. Ask Diane von Furstenberg. She files a lawsuit against Forever 21 every single time they knock her off. Ask Christian Louboutin. He is suing Yves Saint Laurent for painting the sole of one of their shoes his trademark red. Leave other people’s trademarks ALONE and come up with your own!

  8. Interesting, as I was just reading an article discussing a study of how people use logos to make assumptions, usually erroneous, about other people. The article is here:

    As for JoAnn and Coach, I don’t see an infringement, but I’m sure there will be some bucks in the whole deal for the lawyers who will argue about it. It is a shame that they sold us, and we bought, the idea that a couple of C’s on a bag mean quality and prestige. Maybe we should all eschew logos. Hopefully, then, things like this would go away…

  9. I could see how this is hurting Coach. They are already sliding down the slippery slope of tackiness. It’s not really a “designer” brand anymore and cheap fleece sold at Joanns just reinforces that. I bet they’re scared to be associated with anything down-scale because that’s where they’re headed.

  10. I use to work at Coach and there is a process before they actually file suit. The company is approached and asked to discontinue making the product, if they refuse to do so, then and only then does Coach file suit.

    It is interesting to read the comments above mine though…people’s perspectives of Coach as a brand and how they like the product. However, in this instance I agree with Erica. Coach has worked hard to manage and protect their brand and it shouldn’t be infringed upon by anyone.

  11. Yes they should sue. While this is hideous crap, not suing tells others who want to knock them off that they can get away with it.

  12. They can sue if they want but I’ve carried Coach for many years and that crap ain’t fooling me. But I guess I can see their point. When my daughter starts paying for her own goods I’m going to teach her how to pick a good knock off so she can fool everyone until she can afford the real stuff. And besides that fleece is straight up ugly.

  13. As others have pointed out, the issue is that Coach really *has* to sue to protect their copyright if the offender won’t back off. If they don’t, it’s bye-bye copyright.

    And, oh yes, selling junky fleece at JoAnn’s that is reminiscent of that horrid Coach pattern really *does* cheapen the Coach brand. Even more than Coach has done itself.

    Coach bags used to be so classic. Sigh.

    • Agreed. I used to love Coach bags – the old classic Coach bags, not the current, tacky fug that they’re putting out now. Coach’s current offerings are tacky enough that I’d think the JoAnn Fleece was a coach item at first glance.

    • Actually if you look deep into Coach’s line they are still selling their classic bags…but I understand your point of view because I don’t much like all the stuff that is labelled with the C’s either!

    • Exactly. It has to enforce its trademark. To me, there is a strong possibility of consumer confusion, which I believe is a factor considered.

  14. Personally I think it looks more like brightly colored sunglasses than anything else, but mostly I don’t know why Joanns would want to sell it, I mean most their fleece is ugly anyway but this one goes a step further.

  15. I’m with Jessi – to me the prints don’t look that alike; the Joann’s version clearly has circles whereas the C-ness of the Coach version still exists. It’s interesting, though, if Joann’s was C&D’ed and they decided that it was worth the risk, that in their opinion a lawsuit was unlikely to be successful.

    I don’t mind corporations suing if they feel that their trademarks etc. have been infringed, but in this case it doesn’t seem warranted. But I guess that’s for the lawyers to argue.

    As far as Coach goes, I think all their stuff is ugly and I’d never spend a dime on it. I feel the same at Joann’s ugly fleece, and it’s probably equally as marked up from cost of goods as the Coach bags.

  16. That’s a tough one. The print is awfully close (stress on awful) to the print on the Coach bag. If someone were to make a fugly fleece jacket people *might* think it’s Coach’s fugly jacket. In my opinion their logo – and many others – are so watered down by their own merchandise and the knockoffs, that no one would give it a second look unless it was worn by someone photographed and seen by millions.

    However, I the buyers fors Joann’s must have known this was close to the Coach logo fabric and yet they still sold it. They played with fire and got sued. So they deserve it.

  17. Yes, they should be sued. It’s such an obvious infringement that I’m surprised it made it past Jo-Ann Fabric’s own legal department! They know better.

  18. Ummmm no. It’s not the same. Definitely bigger copying issues going on in the world and country (Forever 21…) than this crazy, similar but not identical fleece. Just my unthought-out opinion. I could probably be convinced otherwise.

  19. That someone would believe that nasty fleece could *possibly* be Coach is laughable, but were I Coach, I’d be pretty irritated too.

  20. Coach SHOULD sew JoAnns….. After the finish sewing all the other people bootlegging their logo. I actually viewed a bunch of bags out of the trunk of a coworker’s car. JoAnns should be at the bottom of that list.

  21. I can definitely see why they would want to! No doubt Jo-anns just merrily bought this from China without thinking about it, I can’t imagine someone there making a decision to have Coach fleece specially printed. Maybe Chanel C’s next??

  22. I’d like to know if Joann’s is responsible for the design, or if it happened to be in the batch of ugly fleece crap they bought from China. Once approached by Coach, they should have pulled it though. At first glance, it does resemble the equally ugly Coach design in that little picture, and once the fabric is out of the store and made up, 99.9% of the people would have no clue where it came from. I’m sure someone would be daft enough to try to pass if off as Coach.

  23. The Coach logo doesn’t look very distinctive to me to begin with, so I think Joanne’s would have to have copied it exactly. I think we should all be allowed to use ovals.

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