You can’t keep the cool kids down.
If your favorite designer sets up shop in your city, he doesn’t wait for you to show up and ask if you’re ready to buy. He’s already on your phone.
Virgil Abloh, the enigmatic founder of D.C.’s Off-White, is already at work delivering the ultimate artist manifesto through daily messages meant to “demystify the art and fashion process.” Since the Off-White flagship opened in Washington at the beginning of the year, Abloh has already created 1,000 different influencer profiles in honor of his “directorial pseudonym.” There’s a landing page, a selection of brief videos, all of which impart his artistic points of view, along with a code that unlocks exclusive content. Abloh revealed another tip-of-the-tongue addition to the Off-White canon for us this week: creative hashtags.
Instagram DM’s can be controlled by any number of #DesignersAgents, so when Abloh said that he is “eager to show [the assortment] to you so you can explore your own personal vision of the world,” he wasn’t kidding. Here are the most Instagram-ready secrets for success.
For Many of these #DesignersAgents – like stylist Jake Allan and Instagram-savvy Creative Director Gwyneth Hamner — choosing Abloh as their representative is simple. After all, you do your homework. Since Abloh’s ascension to head designer at Louis Vuitton in March, he’s been launching collections at a dizzying pace, which translates into obvious demand for great things. Allan, for example, works with Abbey Lee and Converse — neither of which would have garnered his attention on their own. But as #DesignersAgents, Abloh has cornered the market. While we suspect that some of the designer’s #DesignersAgents — really any follower who follows the brand on Instagram — were born and raised in the district, Abloh has always found ways to explain that Washington has been key to his work. “To create the craziness we do here in D.C., you need to understand all your warts,” he explained during a conversation at Industria Superstudio last summer. “We find moments that represent the city. We focus on the problems. And we fix them, without looking to the status quo.”
Followers looking to join the #DesignersAgents — or their own curated Off-White accounts — get a running commentary from Abloh himself. Abloh shares engaging tidbits about Washington, and his friends and mentors. He talks about how “all the intersectional aspects” of the city shape his work, and doesn’t hesitate to name names — like Tory Burch, who has been a longtime mentor to him. These Instagram DM’s are guaranteed to inspire.
Did you get his DM?