Former Fashion Couple in Legal Showdown

Former husband and wife designers Chris and Tory Burch are now on opposite sides of a nasty battle of the brands after Chris Burch started a competing line called C Wonder earlier this year.

The former couple, divorced in 2006, created the high-end Tory Burch brand back in 2004, and soon their signature metallic logo became one of the most recognizable in fashion today.

"The idea was to mix outdoor English country and a little bit of American sportswear," Tory Burch said of the brand.

Chris Burch started a competing line called C Wonder earlier this year, which according to the brand website, was "created to deliver brightness to every corner of life." Andrew Rossman ,an attorney representing Chris Burch, says that the Tory Burch brand does now own the market.

"I don't believe that the Tory Burch company has a monopoly on ballet flats or cardigan sweaters or bright colors," Rossman said.

Tory and Chris Burch are now involved in a messy set of lawsuits and counter-suits. He is suing her for breach of contract, while she says he stole her trade secrets to produce a low-end rip-off.

Industry insiders say it's not just the new store's decor at issue, but the products Chris Burch is selling. Rossman said that the two brands have a distinction in price point.

"I don't believe Tory Burch customers who are looking at spending $400 or more on a sweater are going to be looking at C Wonder, and vice versa," he said.

Vanity Fair Contributing Editor Vanessa Grigoriadis spoke with Chris Burch for the magazine's December issue. She said that while the ex-spouses may be battling with each other, their fight won't hurt either of their fans.

"I think Tory is going to continue to expand her business and continue to be America's golden girl, and I think Chris is going to continue to open new brands and expand C Wonder," Grigoriadis said. "I think C Wonder has a real chance."

Tory Burch declined a request for comment by ABC News, but Chris Burch says through his attorney that he hopes, unlike their marriage, the former couple's clothing brands can co-exist peacefully.


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