Do i need a trademark to start a clothing line [FAQ]



Last updated : Sept 26, 2022
Written by : Starr Guadagnolo
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Do i need a trademark to start a clothing line

Should I copyright or trademark my clothing brand?

So certain patterns that are original works for authorship can be and should be copyrighted. So as you see, copyright protects more of the artistic patterns and artwork designs on clothing, whereas trademarks protect the name, logo, or slogan used to identify the brand of the clothing company.

How much does it cost to trademark a clothing brand?

The basic cost to register a trademark with the USPTO is $350 per class of goods. Depending on your brand offerings, you may need to register in multiple classes. If your brand includes both clothing and purses, for instance, you'll pay the basic application fee for both classes of goods.

Do I have to patent my clothing line?

The U.S. Copyright Office maintains records of existing copyrights for designs and patterns used in the creation of garments. Rules to federal trademark require that clothing line labels be sold in at least two states to qualify for a patent.

What do I need to do legally to start a clothing brand?

  1. Write a business plan.
  2. Find your niche.
  3. Understand your market.
  4. Register your clothing business.
  5. Design and source the clothes for your line.
  6. Partner with a manufacturer.
  7. Price your products.
  8. Decide where to sell your clothing line.

When should I trademark my clothing brand?

If you intend to break into this market with a unique new brand, you need to protect your intellectual property from infringement. The best way to secure this protection is by registering your brand as an official trademark.

Do you need a trademark to sell T shirts?

Copyright and Trademarks You should copyright your t-shirt designs and trademark your brand name and logo to protect them legally. But don't stress about copyright and trademark too early– legal protection is not necessary to start your t-shirt business, but is recommended if the funds are available.

What is the cheapest way to trademark?

The basic cost to trademark a business name ranges from $225 to $600 per trademark class. This is the cost to submit your trademark application to the USPTO. The easiest and least expensive way to register your trademark is online, through the USPTO's Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS).

How long does a trademark last?

A federal trademark lasts 10 years from the date of registration, with 10-year renewal terms. Between the fifth and sixth year after the registration date, the registrant must file an affidavit to state that the mark is still in use.

What type of business is a clothing line?

A clothing line is a collection of apparel designed for a target audience and sold in retail locations and/or through online stores. When you enter into the clothing industry, creating a clothing line includes establishing a company, designing the clothes, selecting materials, and sourcing the manufacturing process.

How much does it cost to trademark my logo?

What Does it Cost to Trademark a Logo? The cost to trademark a logo with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is $275–$660 as of June 2020, plus legal fees. You can register a trademark with your state for $50-$150, but federal registration offers a great deal more legal protection.

How much does it cost to copyright a clothing design?

The registration fee can be anywhere between $35-55, depending on the case. If you file for copyright online, it can take around 3-11 months to get processed.

How do I copyright my brand name?

Registering a trademark for a company name is pretty straightforward. Many businesses can file an application online in less than 90 minutes, without a lawyer's help. The simplest way to register is on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Web site, www.uspto.gov.

How much does it cost to start a clothing line?

If you are thinking of a medium sized clothing company then $1,500 up to $5,000 should be sufficient enough. However, if you are thinking of a major wholesale clothing manufacturing business then $20,000 to $50,000 is a perfect investment amount.

Can you copyright clothing design?

Copyright protects the creators of intellectual property of works of art, which means your design cannot be reproduced or duplicated without your permission. However, clothing is considered a "useful article." This means you cannot copyright the clothes themselves, or even the design.

How much does it cost to start a clothing business online?

The cost of starting an online clothing store varies depending on a number of factors, such as whether you plan to manufacture or dropship products, how many products you plan to sell and how much marketing you plan to do. However, most businesses can be started for around $2,000 to $5,000.

What do you call someone who owns a clothing line?

Essentially, clothing makers would be any person or company that makes clothes. We can think of an apparel maker (clothes maker or fashion maker) as someone that produces garments or fashion accessories.

Can two clothing lines have the same name?

Can Two Companies Have the Same Name? Yes, however, certain requirements must be met in order for it to not constitutes trademark infringement and to determine which party is the rightful owner of the name.

Is my clothing brand name taken?

To search the USPTO's trademark database, go to TESS and choose a search option. If you are searching for a name, you can use the trademark name search. If you are searching a design mark, such as a logo, you will first need to look up your design code using the USPTO's Design Search Code Manual.

Can I use famous quotes on T-shirts?

But for a safe answer: you can print anything on a t-shirt that is under public domain without infringing copyright laws. Public domain includes artworks that have expired from their copyright.

How do I protect my t-shirt slogan?

Mark your t-shirt with the trademark on a “hang tag,” or a small writing on the sleeve, neck or bottom of the t-shirt. When you do it that way, you will be using your brand as a trademark (i.e, a source identifier).


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Do i need a trademark to start a clothing line


Comment by Ela Rewerts

what's up bud it's Rob this is apparel success and what we're gonna talk about right now is trademarking your clothing brand if you're just getting started should you invest the money in trade marking your brand to protect it or should you wait a bit save that money and invest it in other things that will help fuel your clothing brand that's what we're gonna talk about in this video let's get into it this video here is sponsored by my buds over at design crowd and if you need designs made for your clothing brand I highly recommend you check out design crowd design crowds a website that helps entrepreneurs crowdsource amazing designs from designers all around the world for a special $100 VIP offer for apparel success peers only head over to www.onproperty.com.au/plus is that you do not start out by getting your clothing brand trademarked okay the reason for this is because when you're just starting out your clothing brand you probably only have a thousand or two thousand dollars to invest into your clothing brand to start and that's pretty much how much it costs to trademark your clothing brand okay so when you're just starting out it's just so unnecessary to get your clothing brand trademarked if you're not making any sales if you're not getting any orders nobody's gonna want to copy you anyways if you're not getting any orders and it's just not really important okay once you move up and you start getting 50 to 100 orders a month coming in on your website and you're selling that much you know every single month then you might think about actually taking some of them you're making some of the profits that you're making and investing it into a trademark so what I want to say here is that although I'm suggesting not getting a trademark from the very beginning when you're just starting up to save money so that you can actually invest into other things I do think that at a minimum you should at least be researching and checking out to see if other brands have already been created that have a similar idea to yours or using similar words to yours okay because you definitely don't want to invest all your time and invest all your money building a brand if there's already a brand out there who's trademarked already okay so I think what's most important off the bat is to actually do your research and see what else is out there in terms of what's already been trademarked with what are other people already doing so I said that at an absolute minimum if you have an idea for a clothing brand you have to be doing research first to make sure that no other clothing brands have done this idea before okay and have already taken your idea that's an absolute minimum is researching online and researching other clothing brands to see if your ideas already been taken if you want to take this to a whole other level without actually having to spend the money invest it into a full-blown trademark for your clothing brand you can do a trademark search okay you can either get a lawyer to do this or you can do it online and it's way less expensive than actually going forward with full-blown trademarking your clothing brand and this will just ease your mind and allow you to know that you know nobody else out there has already trademarked the name of your clothing brand in your region and you're good to actually invest the time and energy into your clothing brand now if your clothing brand is at the point where you're making say 50 to 100 sales a month whether it's in person or online and you do want to trademark because you feel like you're actually getting that momentum and you're like okay now I definitely want to protect this the beauty of it is if you do decide to trademark you usually don't have to pay it all upfront okay so most most law firms that you end up working with won't charge you all upfront for the trademark they'll usually charge you half up front half at the end and that's what we did I think it was like six or seven hundred dollars when we started and then now that her trademark just went through we owe another you know a thousand dollars or whatever it is at the tail end of it okay but that's just my really simple advice on trade marketing I think that if you're just starting up you're just getting started the idea to trademark from the very beginning is almost just as much of a mistake as investing in a crazy amount of inventory when you just don't even know how the markets going to respond to your clothing brand yet okay and that is a mistake that we made not with the trademark but with the inventory we were just way too excited we had you know we were just way too fired up about our clothing brand and we invested way too much money in the inventory and it's like even if we'd sold through all of our inventory you know we could have just reinvested in more then and gotten it it's just way too much risk that's unnecessary okay so if you're just starting up don't freak out and think that you need to trademark and do all this stuff just keep growing your brand and then when it gets to the point where you know you should trademark and you're gaining some momentum then and then you'll usually have the money and that's when you go through with it okay I hope you like this video let me know what you think in the comments below and if you haven't already check out my free clothing brand marketing masterclass video so 100 percent free to watch all you have to do to get access is go to WWL success.com slash masterclass can watch the whole thing for free and if you're a clothing brand that's currently struggling right now you want me to go over everything give you my feedback and suggestions for how you can bring your clothing brand to the next level you can sign up for a clothing brand review at wwl success com otherwise if you've made it to this point the video I want to tell you about the closed Facebook group that we have going on for apparel success there's a link in the description below follow that link join us in the group or a bunch of clothing brand owners all in there to support each other and answer each other's questions thanks for watching this video see you in the next one peace


Thanks for your comment Ela Rewerts, have a nice day.
- Starr Guadagnolo, Staff Member


Comment by cfliD

boo focus hey internets got a good one for you that came in to me from nico from the east shoutout to nico from the east and he was actually commenting from another video so whenever you guys leave the comments below i read all of them and that's how i start a lot of these conversations or ideas for the videos that i post for the next one by the way you can also email me hat hi at john phenom comm that will get me also so his question was should I worry about legalities like an LLC before I start making a presence so that no one can take my name or ideas okay Nico good question let's help some other people out there I feel like that's another question that other people would ask I'm gonna say this as I've said before I probably answered pieces of this question in a bunch of different videos but I definitely don't have a problem in repeating it and updating my answer so the reason I'm bringing the answer for this to the community as I feel like and I can give better value if I've talked about it before so short answer is no don't worry so much about the legalities Internet because you mentioned LLC you don't have to go so big in the beginning okay so you want to do the least amount in order to go ahead and get you rolling so some in some states also I have a big audience in the UK so that's gonna be a little bit different there but I'm sure a business license will do it I'm sure on the lower level doing a DBA might do it doing a doing business as is what DBA stands for but I'm sure a DBA can go ahead and get you started you want the the least the most bottom denominator in terms of you getting your first runs of clothing out there to go ahead and establish the brand and put it out there also so there's another thing you're talking about protecting your concept you're really talking about trademark at that point so I've talked about this at length and in in in the end I do believe if you think that your logo and your brand that you're ready to go and this is the one that you're ready to go with if you're married to that concept and that idea then I think you should trademark it and then move forward that way now in many videos I tell you to just kind of put product out because in some cases you can argue that you're the first one to bring this product to market whatever the name or whatever the brand may be so if someone does bite it if someone just trying to copy it or maybe it existed and you really didn't do your due diligence there's a little bit of a case if you can say that you already have this product in commerce now at this point you should have said right before that in the video I should say I'm not a trademark attorney I'm not an attorney of any kind and I don't play one on the internet so from the clothing brand mentor not attorney okay so you should seek legal counsel and you should email me and ask me who my guys are because my guys kill it and they have really reasonable rates and they're professionals and so so trust me if I have over 18 years of experience in apparel then you should probably be able to trust my word but lawyers are something that I always collect if I meet a new lawyer I'm pretty happy so a lot of the guys that I rock with are really tight with me I'll communicate them several times a year also for interesting interesting cases where there's a Q&A I'll definitely involve them so you you you should I should have by the time this is out some videos with a trademark attorney and a general counsel attorney should you need to go that route so Nikko coming I'm coming back coming back to your question because you at you asked about protecting so when you're protecting an intellectual property we're talking about trademark if you're talking about your logo and stuff like that so to answer your question in a more simple manner don't get hung up guys on having to have an LLC or a corporation if you're watching all those YouTube videos which I've also watched before you might be in too far ahead okay you don't want to be thinking about how you're gonna be spending your millions of dollars before you make your millions of dollars and that might sound like a strange metaphor but you really really want to focus on the things that are just in front of you and of course you know that I'm a huge fan of having a long term plan you got to have a plan but um I've also said many times on this channel on many videos that the landscape or the journey is much different than the map okay so we want to make a map but just like a plane that's going across the country or just like a ship that's going across the seas it makes little adjustments okay doesn't follow a direct straight line and sometimes you have to be quick and nimble and make choices where you have to go around things and under things and over things and so it's not a straight path you have to make adjustments so while I'm a fan definitely of having a plan also know that the plan is going to change and you have to be flexible enough to change with that plan so having said that again one of the biggest things that I always push is the first several rounds of moving the brand is just is just moving the product in rounds so turning the turning the product whatever you design t-shirts hats even if you go straight into cutting so production with like a jacket or you're just doing printables maybe you're using you know the you're using belly canvas fast fashion line whatever you create you just want to turn it into cash you want to get your brand in your logo or your concept on people's backs or wearing it or on their heads if it's on if that's a hat you want to get it on people you want to turn it back into cash you want to keep you want to keep testing testing new designs keep putting it out there at the same time you're doing that you want to do your marketing okay like first of all the marketing plan you'd be better off spending your time in hours not researching what LLC and and paying a lawyer to protect the company when you have not had proof of concept so you've probably better off spending that time in to putting it into a very dynamic and very specific marketing plan so you have a calendar in terms of what you can do every month that's big on social media what campaigns are you gonna do what contests are you gonna do what love are you gonna give people what items are you gonna promo if you make a hundred items are twenty of those hundred items going out to influencers which influences are you using so I'm just I'm just throwing out off the top of my head a ton of things that are homework in order for you to launch a brand so when we're talking about the business of it understand that you're very much a small business owner and typically in a lot of the situations where I'm speaking to you people will tell me I'm o one-man band or one-woman band or lucky enough if you have friends from few people or maybe you're starting with a partnership and a group so to use solopreneur or to the group that I'm talking to all the after mention is all homework that you have to do and that that you can do with nothing I mean you guys just starting the accounts making sure


Thanks cfliD your participation is very much appreciated
- Starr Guadagnolo


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