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Aéropostale Sues Hennes & Mauritz

Aéropostale sued Swedish fast-fashion giant Hennes & Mauritz in Manhattan federal court Thursday.

Aéropostale Inc. wants to Live Love Dream by itself.

This story first appeared in the April 25, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

The New York-based specialty chain sued Swedish fast-fashion giant Hennes & Mauritz in Manhattan federal court Thursday over use of the Live Love Dream, Aero and 87 trademarks.

“H&M engaged in a pattern of conduct involving the use of identical, or nearly identical marks on some of the same goods for which Aéropostale uses its marks, namely, clothing and tote bags,” Aéropostale said in the suit.

Aéropostale said it discovered in March that H&M was selling a graphic T-shirt and a cloth bag with the words Live Love Dream and upon further investigation discovered other looks that it claims infringe on other trademarks.

The two companies traded letters and, according to the suit, H&M asserted this month that Aéropostale would be unable to prove that the use of Live Love Dream on apparel “creates any likelihood of confusion” and said using the words “is a fair use protected by the First Amendment.”

The suit also noted that Aéropostale has a Live Love Dream concept store at the Mall of America in Minnesota as well as in malls in Texas, Ohio and West Virginia. The stores feature the Live Love Dream collection, which is also sold via the Aéropostale chain, and focus on the sleepwear, activewear, yoga apparel and intimate apparel categories.

Those are hot categories right now and could help Aéropostale regain some of its footing after a tough run. The company posted a loss of $141.8 million on sales of $2.1 billion last year.

Aéropostale is seeking an injunction against H&M and unspecified damages.

A spokeswoman for H&M could not be reached late Thursday.