When future historians establish the definitive trend moments of 2018, they may certainly alight on the meteoric rise of Diet Prada. With 489,000 followers – together with energy gamers similar to Naomi Campbell, Edward Enninful and Gigi Hadid – the Instagram account is on a mission to show copycat design. Its recognition says extra about trend’s temper than any shoe, silhouette or hemline.
Diet Prada’s strategies are easy. Photographs of recent designs are juxtaposed with photographs of older, all-too-similar work. Followers are invited to “tsk tsk” alongside within the feedback. Embarrassment ensues. Sometimes, designers concern clarifications, as Kim Kardashian did when Diet Prada mentioned that her childrenswear line looked like Vetements and Comme des Garçons. (Kardashian mentioned the designs have been homages, not copies.) On different events, products are pulled. The account calls out different failings, too: cultural appropriation, lack of mannequin variety, toleration of abuse. In the style – which is run on a kind of weaponised niceness, all bouquets of flowers and handwritten thank-you notes – soiled laundry has by no means been a very good look. Until not too long ago, such candour was remarkable.
Diet Prada was run anonymously till the names of its founders – Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler – beginning showing on trend blogs earlier this yr. They confirmed their identities in an interview a fortnight in the past. Both are freelance designers and product builders, a part of the often silent majority working at labels you might not even have heard of. The account started for enjoyable, as an archive of conversations they have been having anyway. Now, Diet Prada has legions of followers with their very own collective noun: “dieters”. Those who present one of the best tipoffs are “star dieters”.
Some of those devils put on Diet Prada. Because, as has change into customary for an web sensation, there is merch. Most covetable are the hoodies celebrating their highest-profile scalp, Kardashian, emblazoned with the brand: “Kim des Garçons”.