When an idea is a good one, people will rush to duplicate it. We understand that, and we are thrilled that Christian Fashion Week has inspired so many people to want to put on fashion shows for the Christian community. Earlier this year, we were contacted by Quintaria Brunson of Designed Life about working together to leverage the Christian Fashion Week brand and put on a show in the Baltimore/DC area. She corresponded with us several times while we were putting together our Local Edition program.
Several months later, we discovered that Quintaria had chosen to proceed with an event using the Christian Fashion Week brand, which is in the process of being trademarked, presumably to leverage the momentum of our official event. We contacted Designed Life and asked them to cease using the name of our organization and event as a trademark application had been filed and we were working with our legal team to complete the trademark process. She even went as far as placing a TM symbol next to the name Christian Fashion Week, claiming that she had the trademark rights even though no application had been filed and Christian Fashion Week, LLC already had an active application and first use common law rights.
After several e-mail correspondences, phone calls, and communication with their attorney (who she had ready to rebuttal), Quintaria Brunson and Design Life refused to rename their event and continue to use our name. Today, they are hosting an event in 2013, and sponsors, vendors, and designers alike are confusing her event with ours, as we predicted would happen. However, we feel that Quintaria Brunson and Designed Life knew this would happen.
The Official Christian Fashion Week is an international event produced by Christian Fashion Week , LLC, based in Tampa, Florida. Although the future will undoubtedly see year round events, our event is currently held in February, during the timeframe of New York Fashion Week. The event is not produced by an event company as the Baltimore event is, but a team of fashion industry professionals that have taken part in numerous fashion shows and fashion weeks around the country. We've worked for years to establish a strong brand that designers and buyers alike respect. A cursory Google search will show that we are without a doubt the Christian Fashion Week the world, media, and industry knows and acknowledges. Our image is professional, not homemade. Our event is one of the best produced of its kind.
Hopefully, this helps to set the record straight for those who Designed Life's naming strategy has created confusion for. We had hoped that values like concern, love, unity, and valuing the work of others would have prevailed. But, God knows all things and is in control. This is exactly the type of disregard Christian Fashion Week stands against, as it is typical in the fashion industry. It just should not exist in the Christian community. We'll keep you updated on the progress of this issue, and encourage you to voice your concern to Designed Life just as we have. Under any other circumstances, we would have gladly endorsed, worked with, and promoted her event provided that it met Christian Fashion Week production and promotion standards.