Dolce & Gabbana Sues Cape Town Store Dolce and Banana

Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce
Photo: Getty Images
Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana.

High fashion houses are quick to sic their lawyers on designers who knock off their signature pieces—but what about their names?

Dolce & Gabbana has sued a small costume jewelry store called Dolce and Banana near Cape Town, South Africa. “The name Dolce and Banana makes a mockery of the well-known trademark Dolce & Gabbana,” an affidavit filed by Dolce & Gabbana’s holding company states, according to Women’s Wear Daily.

Dolce and Banana store owner Mijou Beller has changed the store’s name to Banana, but that’s not enough for the Italian fashion house, which has reportedly incurred 220,000 South African rands (about $28,600 at current exchange rates) in legal fees over the suit. Dolce & Gabbana demands she pay nearly half that amount, which Beller says would be “financially ruinous.”

She reportedly is asking for leniency via Twitter, sending this message to avid tweeter Stefano Gabbana: “Dear Stefano, please let us be. And visit us in Cape Town. I have always admired your famous sense of humor so present in your brand and in your designs. And although I appreciate that Dolce & Gabbana is a very successful commercial enterprise, I fail to understand why Dolce and Banana is a threat.”