How Retailers and Designers Can Guard Against Knockoffs

Jewelers have been plagued by knockoffs for centuries. JCK talks to a handful who have fought back.Jewelry designers tend to remember the first time they got knocked off in the same way that most people remember the exact moment they learned about a terrible event. For Betsy Cross, a designer and retailer in Portland, Ore., that day came in the spring of 2013, when she discovered a $16 copy of one of her designs, an etched brass cuff bracelet that retails for $72 at Betsy & Iya, the retail store she and her husband, Will Cervarich, started in 2008 “in a coffee shop with a notebook, a bright red pencil, and nothing to lose.”After the initial shock and disappointment, followed by a panicked meeting with an intellectual property lawyer, Cross and Cervarich came up with an unorthodox solution to fight the assault on their brand. Handed a lemon, the couple spun gold. In response to th

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