Recently, Chanel secured registration for its five-petaled Camellia flower design. The design which gained iconic status after being associated with the brand for years, takes up about 40 minutes to make by hand. The flower has become one of the most instantly recognized emblems of Chanel’s accessories, clothing and jewelry. The flower has become synonymous with the House’s estate and brand name and thus, when used in connection with certain types of goods and services, acts as an indicator of source.
The USPTO was initially hesitant to allow protection to the design of a flower which may be simply designed as a three dimensional structure to improve the functionality of the products.
Chanel responded by asserting that its use of the flower drawing is not functional. Rather, the the exclusive purpose of the mark is to act as a source identifier for consumers. The brand further argued that the camellia drawing, used on a product, is equivalent to the position and manner as Chanel’s other marks, such as its Double C trademark .
The brand has actively been trying to bolster its portfolio of Camellia specific marks across the globe. In some jurisdictions the applications have been successful registered while in others, they are in the pre-registration phase.
Reported by Tanya Garg, Senior Editor