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How can fashion designer patent a designs?

How can fashion designer patent a designs?

3D Printed Shoes Patented by United Nude


Fashion designers must avoid “obvious” design patentability planning. A patent examiner can reject your application if the design is obvious. What is “obvious”? 3D printing components are used in Aviation & Automotive Industry to make sample prototype for checking aero dynamics, fitment, dimension and other non-destructive testing; now if a fashion designer is making a shoes using same 3D printing technology, then it will be considered “Obvious”. There are many patents by Fashion Designers related to 3D printed accessories and costumes, but all they discuss about difference from conventional 3D printing, improvement in user experience, modification in raw material chemical composition and other innovation the fashion designer did for Patentability.

There are certain parameters which are considered to reject or accept a patentability application, as explained below: –

Difference in Inventive Steps and Creative Difficulty define type of Patent which can be granted
  1. If the invention a product of combining prior art elements according to known methods to yield predictable results, then the invention is obvious.
  2. If the invention is created through a substitution of one known element for another to obtain predictable results, then the invention is obvious.
  3. If the invention is achieved by using a known technique to improve a similar device in the same way, then the invention is obvious.
  4. If the invention is created by applying a known improvement technique in a way that would yield predictable results, then the invention is obvious.
  5. If the invention is achieved from choosing a finite number of identifiable, predictable solutions that have a reasonable expectation to succeed, then the invention is obvious.
  6. If known work in one field of endeavour prompts variations based on design incentives or market forces and the variations are predictable to one of skill in the art, then the invention is obvious.
Fashion Designers must consider above 3 factors before considering Patentability

What fashion Designers can do to avoid this rejection? Because if the invention would be obvious to anyone involved in the same field as the inventor, then there can be no “statutory monopoly” granted in the form of a patent.

  • The scope and content of the prior art are to be determined – Fashion Designers must do a technical comparison and highlight currently available or older patents.
  • Differences between the prior art and the claims at issue are to be ascertained – Fashion Designer must highlight “How proposed design is different for existing or older patents considering terms and condition of “Obvious” design”.
  • The level of ordinary skill in the pertinent art is to be resolved – It is possible that someone skilled in the relevant field of technology and familiar with its subject matter could have invented it with comparative ease had he tried; such an “invention” would be novel but obvious to that person. Consider different country, different industry and different usability for the level of ordinary skill in the pertinent art. One example is carbon fibre costumes designed by Fashion Designers. Actually Carbon Fibre was already invented by someone else and already in use in Medical, Aviation and Manufacturing Industry.


Now Smart Clothing Companies are using same prior art which is used for Space Suit Design to regulate temperature, humidity and sensors for Heart Beat, Blood Pressure and other conditions.  Can they get patent, Please comment what you think ?

About Author

MIFT ( Mysore Institute of Fashion Technology) students, trainee and scholars study and research about fashion, makeup, forecasting, e commerce, disruptive technologies in fashion & cosmetics industry. The primary research objective is to create open industry modular ecosystem platform for fashion designers and makeup artists to work and earn in hyper personal and local market using IR 4 and 5 ( industrial revolution) technologies to disrupt connected digitalization of mass production. 



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