Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler

The world of Diet Prada started off with just 1000 followers and quickly grew to be one of the most feared – and loved – Instagram duologies on the net. And now with almost half a million followers, the faceless pair have been unmasked in an exclusive interview with Business of Fashion.

If you haven’t heard of the infamous account that has trolled the fashion industry for the past four years, they can only be described as the fashion police – period. With what started out as an account calling-out copy cats across the industry – often corporate fast fashion companies stealing the designs of independent designers – evolved into speaking out against model abuse, racial discrimination, and cultural appropriation within fashion.

Ever-controversial Kanye is no stranger to digging in the far reaches of the internet for inspiration.  Is Ye just showing his creative process with inspiration images or claiming the work to be his own?  Photoshopping out the title of the sketch in the top left corner is pretty much a dead giveaway lol.  The original by designer @tonyspackman was done in 2005 for a @nike collection called "Living Apparel" which eventually became "Nike React", a running collection grounded in freedom of movement and human comfort.  Can we just call it Yee?y now? ? • #yeezy #kanyewest #kanye #kimye #theft #inspiration #illustration #design #fashiondesign #sportswear #streetwear #athleisure #nike #streetstyle #running #nikerunning #hypebeast #highsnobiety #snobshots #wiwt #ootd #copycat #knockoff #wtf #dietprada

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The names behind the brains of the operation were revealed through the media in October last year, but they have never spoken on the record until now. Lindsey Schuyler and Tony Liu met while working for accessories designer Eugenia Kim in New York and now work within the design and management sector. The idea came about, through the pair joking backstage at runway shows, calling out similar designs from other labels, and soon they realised what an issue it had become. Soon after, @diet_prada was born. The duo took the iconic account name from Miuccia Prada, “the original end-all be-all of everything,” and Diet Coke, “the original imitator.”

“For us, nothing is sacred. I don’t know why this industry is so self-protective. Every other industry, people say whatever shit they want and they should be able to do that in fashion as well. I think it’s new to them. We’re such a jarring new voice that any kind of hard criticism seems like bullying, but it’s not. It’s just criticism.”

From small beginnings came great success, and have followers such as Gigi Hadid, Naomi Campbell and “basically every major fashion industry professional”. As imagined, the account has its own list of haters in the form of designers like Loewe and Dolce & Gabbana.

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The duo are looking at turning their viral account into a legitimate business within the next few years.

“We just kind of realised there was so much more in this industry that needed to be talked about and a lot of these people have serious concerns and they don’t have a voice, they don’t have a platform. So, we’re able to give that to them and highlight issues that the industry otherwise, I mean, for the most part, ignores. Diversity. Representation.”