There were a few comments on our post about the Gucci spring 2016 accessories that called out the fact that the brand's nail rings were similar to those of Bijules, a New York-based fine jewelry brand who's been producing its own signature nail rings since 2006. As it turns out, Jules Kim, the designer behind Bijules, noticed the same thing. Kim, who is currently in Milan for market appointments, confirmed to Fashionista on Friday that she will be taking legal recourse on the Italian fashion house for copyright infringement.
"While it is an honor to be knocked off by Gucci, they have all of the resources to create something unique; instead they went back to something that's steadfast and iconic of my company and that is unjust," said Kim over the phone. "If Gucci sells those nail rings to stores, those stores are going to believe Gucci made them and not me, and that is not a fair statement." At press time, reps for Gucci could not be reached for comment.
Kim, who founded Bijules in 2004, copyrighted her nail rings in 2007. Since launching her original designs, which were inspired by childhood memories of playing dress-up with her twin sister, Kim has up to 50 different styles of her nail rings. The collection has garnered fans from all over the world, including celebrities like Beyoncé, Rihanna, Madonna and Lady Gaga. With such a global following, Kim isn't surprised that people were calling her attention to Gucci's spring 2016 collection — and not just on the Internet. "A fashion editor friend of mine was heading to the Gucci re-sees and literally grabbed me on the street here in Milan," said Kim. "It's definitely an iconic piece."
Whether Gucci intends to push their own nail rings from the runway and onto the fine jewelry market has yet to be confirmed. In the meantime, Kim has already contacted her legal team to move forward with a cease-and-desist towards the proper party. "My goal is not... to make money but I am responsible for protecting this piece. It's a tap on Gucci's shoulder that Creative Director Alessandro [Michele], who used to be the head of [accessories], is well aware of Bijules," said Kim.