Fashionista readers of the Monthly Update will recall the ongoing saga of the red-soled shoes, which resulted in a 2d Circuit decision recognising Christian Louboutin’s right to a monopoly to produce shoes with a red sole that contrasted with the upper, but not shoes with red uppers and soles (like those made by YSL, Louboutin’s arch-rival in the great shoe showdown).

The US Patent & Trademark Office has recently rejected the argument put forward by Louboutin that his mark should be extended to a shoe with a red sole that contrasts with ‘any visible portion of the shoe’, on the grounds that this would not reflect what the 2d Circuit actually said and might have the effect of preventing someone else from making a shoe with red sole and upper but contrasting ornamentation (buckles, bows etc.).