Target to Remove Controversial Shirt After Designer's Copycat Claim Goes Viral

Melissa Lay accused the retailer of copying her design.

ByABC News
May 14, 2015, 12:46 PM

— -- Target officials announced today they will remove a controversial shirt from store shelves after an Oregon designer accused the retailer of copying her design.

"Target has a deep appreciation for design," according to a statement from a Target spokesman. "As such, we were concerned when this was brought to our attention. We've been in contact with the vendor that produced this tee. We've also reached out directly to the designer.”

"We’re continuing to look into this matter and are in the process of removing the tee from our assortment," Target officials confirmed in the statement.

Melissa Lay's social media post went viral this week after she accused Target of appropriating her design on a black tank top. In a picture on her post, Lay wore her popular "#Merica" shirt, while holding up a nearly identical shirt at a Target outside Portland, Oregon, where she lives.

"I’m just really happy that that was their decision and that was exactly what I was hoping would happen," Lay told ABC News today.

Lay started her Sandi Lake Clothing line last year and her "#merica" shirt was one of her most popular sellers. She told ABC News she was stunned when a friend sent her a picture of the nearly identical shirt at a Target store.

"It was almost unbelievable seeing the picture," Lay told ABC News. "It was the first thing I saw when I walked in. I’ve been making and looking at this design for so long."

Lay had no comment regarding potential legal action.