In a world known for its pin-stripes and its wigs, the legal profession is not exactly synonymous with fashion. But law firm Middletons is linking catwalk with boardroom by hosting a Fashion Law breakfast as part of the L’Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival this year.
Middletons is a supporting partner of LMFF an annual celebration of fashion, design, business and creative endeavour held in March. Middletons has sponsored the festival since 2003, highlighting the firm's expertise and growing presence in the fashion industry, the firm said in a statement.
The Festival itself is a week-long event to connect designers, consumers and retailers. And lawyers.
The festival includes runway shows featuring Australia’s established and emerging designers, state-of-the art production, beauty workshops, industry seminars and forums.
Middletons Intellectual Property Partner, Lisa Egan said representatives from the fashion industry, The PAS Group and Calibre, will join with lawyers from Middletons to form a panel discussing the commercial and legal challenges surrounding retail models for both bricks and mortar, as well as the increasingly important online markets.
The firm said clothing retailers are coming to grips with seismic shifts in consumer spending behaviour following the global financial crisis. Not only are Australians saving more than they have in over 20 years, but more and more consumers are purchasing items online when they choose to spend.
Egan said the online environment has given retailers huge opportunity to innovate and define, or redefine, how they operate.
“Along with this has also come a long list of challenges and our breakfast provides an excellent opportunity for fashion designers and retailers to stay abreast of legal developments impacting their business, particularly in terms of brand protection."
Middletons acts for fashion houses and designers on issues including protecting original designs, preventing counterfeit products in the market, resolving employment issues and protecting well known brands in Australia and internationally.