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marc jacobs nirvana trademark grunge collection redux
Marc Jacobs Bootleg Redux GrungeCourtesy of Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs responds to Nirvana trademark infringement allegations

The designer’s legal team refute claims that he used the band’s smiley face icon in his reissued ‘grunge’ collection

Right at the end of last year, Nirvana accused Marc Jacobs of copying its recognisable smiley face icon – that it trademarked back in 1992 – in the reissuing of his “Bootleg Redux Grunge” SS93 collection for Perry Ellis. 

As a way of paying homage to the controversial collection that led to him being fired, Jacobs’ reissued collection featured a tee with a similar-looking graphic – though its eyes were replaced with an ‘M’ and ‘J’ – which led the band’s team to file a lawsuit against him. After slyly responding to the allegations on Instagram at the time – using the hashtags #onvacation, #nostress, #justpeaceandquiet – the designer’s legal team has now asked for a dismissal. 

According to Pitchfork, Jacobs’ lawyers deny any similarity between the two graphics and follow with a statement for both Courtney Love and Frances Bean Cobain, who he claims supported him at the time of the collection’s release. As well as being gifted items, Love was invited to perform at the launch party in LA and commented on a picture of the designer in the tee with: “Nice photo! Looks somewhat familiar! Amazing!”.

Nirvana has not yet responded to the filing for dismissal.