Susan Scafidi, professor and director of the Fashion Law Institute, was interviewed by Complex concerning Popeyes’ recent spoof of a Beyonce advertisement for her company, Ivy Park.
Popeyes mimicked the Ivy Park Adidas collection’s maroon and orange color palette, which, in all fairness, the chicken chain is known for, and produced athleisure pieces like sweatshirts, oversized crew necks with the Popeyes logo on the sleeve, and long sleeve quarter-zip tops—the company claims these pieces are employee uniforms. The imagery for the collection took cues from Beyoncé’s e-commerce images and her lookbook shots.
Have you seen something similar to this where there were legal ramifications?
This one is unusual. I was trying to think in those terms, and nothing really came to mind. Clearly fashion companies step on one another’s toes all the time. Like when Vetements used the DHL uniform. And they used it very directly. It wasn’t just a similar colorway or a nod to it. They turned the DHL uniform into high fashion and DHL didn’t seem to object. DHL is of course, not in the clothing business, but using the logo could have raised some legal questions, but DHL just went with the publicity, at least publicly.