Some year ago Crane & Co began printing a small, arguably tasteful, "Crane & Co." at the bottom of every sheet of stationary. Yesterday I saw a few boxes of Crane stationery at Sherman's in Camden. At the bottom of each sheet was not only "Crane & Co." but below that, "Reg. trademark". Why? Perhaps this from Neal Stephenson:
(the richer tourists at Disney World wear t-shirts printed with the names of famous designers, because designs themselves can be bootlegged easily and with impunity. The only way to make clothing that cannot be legally bootlegged is to print copyrighted and trademarked words on it; once you have taken that step, the clothing itself doesn't really matter, and so a t-shirt is as good as anything else. T-shirts with expensive words on them are now the insignia of the upper class. T-shirts with cheap words, or no words at all, are for the commoners).
O. Henry gets it. The chain Della bought for Jim watch
was a platinum fob chain simple and chaste in design, properly proclaiming its value by substance alone and not by meretricious ornamentation--as all good things should do.
The stationery still has a watermark. Is this not enough?