Design Protection

Securing the value of your design

Whether it is the shape, configuration or surface decoration of a product, or a combination of all three, that you consider to be valuable, Bridle IP can advise you in relation to protecting your designs.

Designs protect the look of an article

Design protection may be either registered or unregistered. Itis possible to obtain design protection in the UK, or throughout all of the European Union with a single application, in addition to other jurisdictions

Securing Design Registrations

Our attorney team provides streamlined services for securing design registrations, ensuring that your designs are fully protected.

Defending Your Rights

When your intellectual property is threatened, defending your rights is crucial.. Our attorneys can advise you and assist you in such matters.

Resolving Issues

Intellectual property issues can be complex and stressful. Do not let it get in the way of your success.

Unregistered Rights

Your unregistered intellectual property is still valuable. Let us help you protect your design rights with our tailored advice and support.

What you get from Bridle IP

Our experienced trade mark attorneys can help you achieve your long-term business goals.

Specialist Team

With direct contact to someone who will know all the details of your case


Our attorneys have significant experience in advising clients how best to protect their designs


Friendly, yet professional team ready to help

“I have had the pleasure of knowing and using the services provided by Andy and Kerry on all things to do with protecting my ideas and designs since 2009. During this period, they have advised on many projects for me and have always provided sound, honest and knowledgeable advice and are always happy to provide a sounding board on new ideas and products.”

Design FAQ:

A registered design is something which protects the overall shape and/or appearance of a product.

No, a design registration is not necessary to make, import or sell an aesthetically pleasing product.

However, without a design registration, you may not be able to stop competitors making, importing and/or selling a product which looks the same or similar.

A design may be the appearance of a product as a whole or part of a It may be the three-dimensional shape of the product or it may be a particular surface decoration (e.g. a pattern on a fabric). It may also be a graphic symbol, such as an icon or a typeface.

In order for a design to be registered, it must be This means that it must not have been made public prior to the grace period (see later). It must also possess individual character, i.e. produce a different overall impression when compared with earlier designs.

There is a list of exclusions which may prevent a design from being registered. These include the following:

  • The design must be visible in
  • The design must not be dictated solely by the function of the product. This means that if a product has to have a specific design in order to function, then registration of the design would not be allowed.
  • The design must not be such that it must fit with another component. This means that if the design (such as the arrangement of the pins of a plug) is essential for it to fit with another component (such as a socket), then registration of that design would not be allowed.

The registration of designs which include protected emblems, such as a national flag, a red cross or the Olympic rings, or which include someone elses trade mark or copyright material will not be allowed.

We would be happy to advise you if there is any doubt about whether or not a design may be registered. 

The law in the UK, Europe and certain other countries provides a 12 month period (the grace period) within which any disclosure of a design by its designer does not count against an application for registered design protection. 

It is important to remember that a disclosure made by a person other than the designer is not covered by the grace period.

It is important to note that design registrations are This means that they only provide protection in the country in which they are registered. In other words, a UK design registration will only protect the design in the UK.

However, you would be able to prevent importation into the UK of goods bearing the design.

An application must be made to the relevant Intellectual Property You can make the application yourself or you can appoint a Patent Attorney to act on your behalf.

Patent Attorneys are professionally qualified people who are experienced in applying for design registrations on behalf of clients and dealing with the subsequent procedures.

The lifetime of a registered design varies according to the country in which it is registered. By way of an example, a design registration in the UK would last for up to 25 years, provided that periodic renewal fees are paid.

Got more questions?

For more help contact our team of experts who can assist you with your IP needs.