High-end luxury fashion brands have been imitated by masstige suppliers before, but hot-button toy “Pooey Puitton” takes things a step further. The $59.99 toy consists of a slime kit tucked into a fake purse that looks like a, um, dumpier version of Louis Vuitton’s signature style.
The designer isn’t taking the news too smoothly. In December, Louis Vuitton complained that the toy infringed on its intellectual property rights. However, the toy maker is fighting back with a new lawsuit that claims the product is protected parody and that no consumer would mistake the Pooey for a real Louis.
For a luxury fashion brand like Louis Vuitton, maintaining equity around brand name is crucial. The brand has done a solid job of establishing digital relevance, scoring a rank of Genius in Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Fashion Global. However, a few minor missteps on the keyboard could drive a shopper to the toy rather than the real brand…especially important in the fashion category, which relies heavily on search to drive site traffic. Given the toy maker’s stated intention “to mock, criticize, and make fun of the wealth and celebrity” typically associated with the iconic Louis Vuitton monogrammed bags, it will be interesting to see how the designer fights back.