Kylie Jenner’s Brand Khy Has Been Accused of Copying a Small Designer

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And it’s not the first time.

Kylie Jenner’s brand Khy has done it again — reportedly ripped off a small designer, that is. On February 28, Australian designer Jessica Johansen-Bell alleged that the latest drop from Jenner’s fashion brand Khy looked eerily similar to pieces from her brand Johansen. Could this be a coincidence? Likely not, considering Johansen-Bell launched these over three years ago.

In a video posted to TikTok, the founder asked followers: “Guys am I tripping or did Kylie Jenner just rip off my entire collection?” Johansen-Bell then went on to show comparisons of her collection to Khy’s latest, with both featuring body-hugging dresses in neutral colours with twisted straps. The similarity is pretty uncanny.

Johansen-Bell went on to say that she’d reached out to Khy who responded, saying the designs were developed through their team’s “hard work and innovation.” As Johansen-Bell noted, the response didn’t make sense because, “If you look up the meaning of innovation, it means new idea.” Ouch. Jenner has yet to comment on the allegations.

It’s a messy situation. But this is far from the first time time Jenner, or her famous Kardashian-Jenner family, has been called out for copying other artists. Below, everything you need to know about the Khy copycat situation.

@khyKylie wearing the sueded stretch knotted maxi dress for $98. available in limited colors and quantities. shop now on khy.com.♬ Woke Up – Spxrnn

First of all, what is Khy?

ICYMI, Khy is Kylie Jenner’s new-ish fashion brand. Launched in October of last year, Khy offers consumers high fashion looks at an affordable price, aiming to “redefine the modern wardrobe” by blending luxury with the everyday style. So far, the brand has had four drops, the first two in collaboration with designers Namilia and Entire Studios. At the end of February, Khy launched Drop 004, Day to Night: Dresses + Sets.

What are Kylie Jenner and Khy being called out for?

Shortly after the drop, the internet went wild when Johansen-Bell shared that Khy’s new drop seemed pretty similar to a collection of hers from three years ago (and that has since become their signature style). Johansen-Bell was first alerted to the similarity when shortly after Khy’s latest drop, she was inundated with messages from customers, friends, and fans who thought the dresses were hers, and that the designer had partnered with Khy. (Not the case.) In comments on her TikTok video, social media users confirmed the likeness, with several people commenting: “I legit thought it was Johansen when I first saw it.”

@jessicajohansenbellInnovation station♬ Circus Music – The Hit Crew Kids

Making matters quite a bit worse, as Johansen-Bell shares, the Australian brand has dressed Jenner in the past.

So, did Jenner actually steal from Johansen?

Whether or not Jenner’s brand has actually blatantly ripped of a small designer or is just taking creative liberties (is anything totally original these days?) is what people are finding most divisive.

The line between drawing inspo and straight-up plagiarizing has always been kind of blurry. There are a few reasons for this. Fashion is cyclical, meaning that designs of the past may come back around in style down the road. Plus, copyright law is complicated and often financially inaccessible to independent creatives who are starting out.

As many people online commented, a twisted strap on a dress isn’t entirely reinventing the sartorial wheel, with other brands like Zara also releasing similar-looking dresses and tops in recent years. But the fact that Johansen has dressed Jenner in their signature looks before, only to have the star produce a line of extremely similar-looking clothing, at a more inexpensive price, feels suspect.

Is this the first time Kylie Jenner has been accused of stealing designs?

This is far from the first time Jenner has been accused of ripping small designers off. From the time of Khy’s launch in October 2023, the brand has faced controversy. Drop 001, in collaboration with Namilia, was comprised of 13 pieces, including faux leather dresses and coats. Shortly after the release, creative director Betsy Johnson alleged it was a rip-off of her latest line PRODUCTS. In a series of Instagram Stories, Johnson shared that her team had sent Kylie and her team the concept behind the line six months earlier, writing ” INTERESTING CONCEPT KYLIE:…INTERESTING.”

And Kylie Jenner isn’t the first member of her famous family to be called out for plagiarizing fashion, from both big and small designers. In June 2017, Khloe Kardashian was accused by lingerie and bodysuit designer Destiney Bleu of reportedly ripping off her designs for Kardashian’s Good American label. While Kardashian and her team initially denied the allegations, saying they’d never heard of Bleu or her brand, Bleu came with receipts, sharing emails between herself and the star’s team, including requests from Kardashian’s former stylist Monica Rose to borrow some pieces — yes, the very ones that went on to be allegedly copied.

Around the same time, Kylie Jenner was again in the news for allegedly stealing a camo-print design for her line The Kylie Shop. In 2018, Kim Kardashian also came under fire with the release of her fragrance, KKW Body, with the bottle shape compared to Jean-Paul Gaultier’s signature fragrance.

What happens next?

That’s kind of up to us, the consumers. The reality is that the reason the Kardashians-Jenners have allegedly ripped off smaller designers is because they can. Their fans, even knowing their history, continue to purchase anything and everything the famous family touches, even if it isn’t an original idea. Call it a byproduct of our obsession with celebrity, that we want to own anything they put their name to, or maybe a side effect of over-consumerism.

If we are actually up in arms about small designers seemingly being taken advantage of, we have to put our money where our mouth is and stop spending it on Kardashian-Jenner products and call them out when it happens again, and again, and again.

It may mean spending more money to purchase a dress from a designer just starting out, but the payoff is worth it.

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