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The Bettie Page Clothing/Tatyana legal battle is no picnic. Image via Tatyana.
Bettie Page Clothing's pink, pinup-girl ads have been a fixture in Muni stations for several years. They reassured us that, while San Francisco may be growing and changing, some things in this great city remained constant. And then, without warning, they were gone. And replaced. By some imposter named Tatyana who had totally ripped off Bettie Page's retro-cool aesthetic. Or so we thought.
In a total M. Night Shyamalan twist, we learned this weekend from the Indianapolis Star that Tatyana was the Bettie Page mastermind all along and is now designing under her own name. But there's more than just rebranding at play.
Tatyana Khomyakova launched her rockabilly-cool dresses under her first label, Bettie Page Clothing, in 2006. As the Russian-born designer's website tells it, "In 2014, Tatyana emerged from the Bettie Page Clothing line to unveil her new company: Tatyana." The Indianapolis Star, however, reports that "Indianapolis celebrity-licensing company CMG Worldwide has yanked the right to use Page's name and image from the high-end boutique."
According to the IndyStar, Khomyakova and her entrepreneur husband, Jan Glaser, began licensing the Bettie Page name from CMG in 2006. Over the last eight years, their business grew from a single shop in the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Vegas to a chain of more than 20 boutiques, including San Francisco's Haight Street location. The price for the Bettie Page name? Four percent of the stores' sales.
In March, CMG pulled the chain's licensing rights and sued, claiming that Tatyana Designs owed CMG up to $1 million. Tatyana countersued, claiming that its business relationship with CMG was all based on a lie. Now the two companies are duking it out in litigation.
Legal drama aside, the only real change for San Francisco's retro-loving shoppers (and ad-reading Muni passengers) is the branding: Bettie Page is out. Tatyana is in. Note the name change, and shop accordingly.
· Tatyana [Official Site]
· Exposed: Nevada Boutique Stripped of Right To Use Bettie Page Pinup Pics [Indianapolis Star]