Fashion designer SUES Lego over toy leather jacket worn by tiny model of Queer Eye's Antoni Porowski - claiming company 'intentionally' copied custom piece he made for the Netflix host

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Porowski wore a custom leather jacket designed by James Concannon in a past episode of Netflix's Queer EyeThe jacket is covered in white artwork including a peace sign, a skull, and a message on the back in a dripping font In October, Lego released a Queer Eye set including a body wearing a leather jacket with white artwork, including a skull and a peace signConcannon alleges Lego 'painstakingly copied' the 'individual creative elements' as well as the 'unique placement, coordination, and arrangement'He says that Lego had offered him a free set, then revoked the offerThe designer is now suing for monetary damages

A leather jacket worn by Queer Eye star Antoni Porowski is at the center of a copyright infringement lawsuit after Lego created a toy version of the TV personality wearing a similar leather jacket.

In a past season of the hit Netflix series, Porowski wore a leather jacket by designer James Concannon. The design features artwork on the front, including a peace sign and a skull, as well as the words ‘thyme is on my sign’ written in graffiti style on the back. 

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Last fall, Lego released a Queer Eye toy set featuring miniature versions of the show’s five stars, and one of the available outfits was a leather jacket with its own graffiti style artwork. 

In a lawsuit filed in Connecticut in December, Concannon says that Lego ‘painstakingly copied not only the individual creative elements of the jacket, but the unique placement, coordination, and arrangement of the individual artistic elements, as well.’

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A leather jacket worn by Queer Eye star Antoni Porowski is at the center of a copyright infringement lawsuit

A leather jacket worn by Queer Eye star Antoni Porowski is at the center of a copyright infringement lawsuit

Global Tech News Daily

In October, Lego released a Queer Eye set including a outfit option for Antoni including a leather jacket with white artwork

In October, Lego released a Queer Eye set including a outfit option for Antoni including a leather jacket with white artwork 

Designer James Concannon, who made Antoni's jacket, is accusing Lego of 'painstakingly [copying] not only the individual creative elements of the jacket, but the unique placement, coordination, and arrangement of the individual artistic elements, as well'

Designer James Concannon, who made Antoni’s jacket, is accusing Lego of ‘painstakingly [copying] not only the individual creative elements of the jacket, but the unique placement, coordination, and arrangement of the individual artistic elements, as well’

According to The Fashion Law, Concannon created the custom leather jacket for Porowski in 2018.

In 2019, he shared photos of it on Instagram of the ‘Thyme Is On My Side’ jacket, writing: ‘Spraypaint and acrylic on leather. 1 of 1. In the collection of and worn by @antoni in the new @queereye seasons first episode. Love you Popo.’

The black jacket features a white skull on one side of the chest, with the words ‘raw’ and ‘war’ written above and below it, and a yin-yang with smiling and sad faces on the collar.

There is a peace sign on the opposite-side collar, while the left side also has a pair of fists breaking chains and the words: ‘As monuments fall / tear down the walls / and shake hate’s chain / off society’s brain.’ 

The back says ‘Thyme is on my side’ in a dripping white font over a gray background.

His suit says it was ‘created using a plain black leather jacket that Porowski sent to Concannon, to which Concannon added his original artwork, composing and arranging each artistic element to reflect his signature aesthetic.’ 

He copyrighted the design in November 2021. 

Photos from the shoot so side-by-side comparisons of the designer' jacket and the Lego piece

Photos from the shoot so side-by-side comparisons of the designer’ jacket and the Lego piece

The black jacket features a white skull on one side of the chest, with the words 'raw' and 'war' written above and below it, and a yin-yang with smiling and sad faces on the collar

The black jacket features a white skull on one side of the chest, with the words ‘raw’ and ‘war’ written above and below it, and a yin-yang with smiling and sad faces on the collar

The back says 'Thyme is on my side' in a dripping white font over a gray background

The back says ‘Thyme is on my side’ in a dripping white font over a gray background

In Lego’s Queer Eye set, which went on sale in October 2021, one of the changeable top halves features a painted-on black leather jacket with white markings.

In the complaint, Concannon (pictured) accuses Lego of replicating his jacket without permission or compensation, saying he 'never agreed' to allow the company to 'exploit' his work for free

In the complaint, Concannon (pictured) accuses Lego of replicating his jacket without permission or compensation, saying he ‘never agreed’ to allow the company to ‘exploit’ his work for free

The markings include what looks like a Lego skull, a smiley face on one side of the collar, a piece sign on the other, and a globe. There also appears to be similar button and zipper placement.

On the back, it reads ‘Rebuild the world’ in a dripping white font on a gray background.

In Concannon’s complaint, he accuses Lego of replicating his jacket without permission or compensation.   

The suit says ‘he certainly never agreed to allow LEGO — the largest toy company in the world, with over $5 billion in annual revenue — to commercially exploit his artwork for free.’

He said they ‘infringed and will continue to infringe upon his copyrights in the jacket by, among other things, copying, publicly displaying, distributing, and creating derivative works of the infringing product, which is substantially similar to, derived from and a derivative of [his] original artwork and design.’ 

Though Concannon designed the jacket in 2018, he didn't copyright the design until November 2021 - a month after Lego's Queer Eye set came out

Though Concannon designed the jacket in 2018, he didn’t copyright the design until November 2021 – a month after Lego’s Queer Eye set came out

He says that Lego had offered him a free set, then revoked the offer. The designer is now suing for monetary damages

He says that Lego had offered him a free set, then revoked the offer. The designer is now suing for monetary damages

When he first brought the issue to Lego’s attention, he alleges that they offered him a ‘free Fab 5 Loft set — which retails for $99.99 — for [his] six-year-old son to play with, only to later revoke that offer, telling [him] that Lego does not give away its products for free.’

When Concannon sent a cease-and-desist letter, he says he was told that a case against Lego ‘would be an “uphill battle” [for them].’

Lego’s lawyers also asserted that ‘in effect, by gifting the jacket to his friend Porowski knowing that [he] would wear the jacket on Queer Eye, Concannon was granting an “implied license” to Netflix to use the jacket in any manner it pleased — including sub-licensing the work to LEGO.’

Concannon is suing for monetary damages for ‘all damages [he] suffered and for any profits or gain by [LEGO].’

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