People take photos outside the flagship store of Dolce & Gabbana in Hong Kong January 8, 2012.

Italian fashion house Dolce & Gabbana has taken a small South African business to court, accusing it of diluting the luxury brand's name, it was reported on Sunday.

It demanded that Dolce and Banana, a small business in Hout Bay, rebrand, according to the Sunday Times.

“The name Dolce and Banana makes a mockery of the well-known trademark, Dolce & Gabbana,” the weekly quoted from a 300-page affidavit submitted to the Cape High Court by Christiana Ruella.

Ruella is a board member of Gado, Dolce & Gabbana's holding company.

Shop owner Mijou Beller has since renamed her business “Banana”.

“We don't have the money to fight them, so decided to change the name,” she told the paper. The changes had cost her around R10,000.

Dolce & Gabbana also wants her to pay R100,000 of the R220,000 in legal fees it incurred when the case went to court, arguing that she ignored two warnings before court action was taken.

Beller said she could not afford to pay, the weekly reported. - Sapa