Home » Australian designer who accused Kylie Jenner of ‘ripping off’ her designs demands an apology from the ‘morally corrupt’ star – who wore her dresses FIVE YEARS before launching her own lookalike KHY collection

Australian designer who accused Kylie Jenner of ‘ripping off’ her designs demands an apology from the ‘morally corrupt’ star – who wore her dresses FIVE YEARS before launching her own lookalike KHY collection

An Australian designer who accused Kylie Jenner of ‘ripping off’ her fashion line is demanding an apology from the ‘morally corrupt’ star who once wore her designs. 

Jessica Johansen Bell, 28, launched Johansen in 2015 and was ‘flattered’ when Jenner, 27, started wearing her pieces and posing in them online.

But she was left in utter disbelief earlier this year when the reality star-turned-businesswoman dropped her fourth collection from her new brand Khy – which featured twisted straps similar to those designed by Johansen Bell five years ago.

She addressed the apparent similarity’s between her collection and that of the reality star in March in a now-viral TikTok video, sharing a slideshow of her dresses side-by-side with Jenner’s new line.

Kylie Jenner, 28 (pictured in a white Khy dress)  has been accused of ‘ripping off’ fashion designs for her new label Khy from Australian fashion designer Jessica Johansen Bell, 28 

Johansen Bell (pictured in a screenshot from a TikTok video in which she accused Jenner of ripping off her entire collection) told DailyMail.com that Jenner is 'morally corrupt'

Johansen Bell (pictured in a screenshot from a TikTok video in which she accused Jenner of ripping off her entire collection) told DailyMail.com that Jenner is ‘morally corrupt’ 

Jenner (wearing a Khy dress with a twisted shoulder strap) has worn several of Johansen Bell's dresses after being gifted them in 2018

Jenner (wearing a Khy dress with a twisted shoulder strap) has worn several of Johansen Bell’s dresses after being gifted them in 2018

Johansen Bell insists that the twisted shoulder strap (seen here in a dress worn by a model for Johansen) is the signature mark of her clothing line and that Jenner knew this

Johansen Bell insists that the twisted shoulder strap (seen here in a dress worn by a model for Johansen) is the signature mark of her clothing line and that Jenner knew this

She is now calling on the star to apologize, and said the multihyphenate needs to be ‘put in her place’ in an exclusive interview with DailyMail.com.

‘I reached out to the Khy company when I saw this,’ she said. ‘I was like, “Take this down. My customers are just getting confused.” And it was getting worse by the day. It started to stress me out. 

‘It just seems so morally corrupt for such a large-scale company to rip off such a small brand and sell it for such a small amount of money. It devalues the whole brand. 

‘Her team responded and said: “We innovated these designs.” I told them: “You did not. This is crazy.” And that is when they ghosted me. Completely.’ 

The designer described how she had sent dresses to Jenner in 2018, which she wore in pictures posted to her social media accounts. She claimed Jenner’s stylist also reached out ahead of the star’s 21st birthday and Johansen Bell sent dresses which Jenner also modeled on her big day.

‘In 2018, we sent a few styles to her house, and she wore my dresses in 50 or so videos… I was fresh in my business,’ she said. ‘At the time I was not sending that kind of stock overseas because that was huge expense for me. But I saw the opportunity and I just took it on. 

‘So we just continued sending her stylists clothes. We sent her a box in 2019 of the whole collection, so it had all the twisted strap styles that you see in her current collection.’

She continued: ‘When she dropped this latest collection I was getting all these DMs. I just thought it was old content because we get tagged in her old stuff all the time. 

Jenner shows off a tan off-the-shoulder dress from    her  Khy collection

A model pictured in a similar design from Johansen

Johansen Bell told DailyMail.com that she sent Jenner dozens of dresses in 2018 – many of which were worn by the reality star at the time

Jenner (seen here in a Khy design) denied Johansen Bell's claims

Fans are not convinced that Jenner was not aware of the similarities between Khy and Johansen (here)

‘I sent her forty or more dresses over the years, and they would send some back. I didn’t keep records of back then,’ Johansen Bell said

‘I saw it and I just thought it was one of my dresses. This is when I first realized. I went on her website, and I was just so shocked.

‘At first I was flattered by her wearing my clothing. She was the first celebrity that really wore my stuff like I had other celebrities but she was the first big celebrity. It was big for me. 

‘But then when she ripped off my whole collection – I stopped feeling flattered.’

Jenner launched her latest Khy collection in February which features black, white and beige mini and midi dresses featuring twisted straps like those designed by Johansen Bell.

Jenner’s dresses retail at $78 and $98, while Johansen Bell’s start at $190 (AUS $289).  

Speaking about her decision to go public on TikTok, she said: ‘I thought that maybe if I publicly put pressure on her she will stop. She stopped posting as much. 

‘It just got way bigger than I thought it was gonna be so I just I knew it was gonna be a big deal. Because I wasn’t crazy. I could like I was looking at it going this is crazy. I’m not crazy, you know? But then went so viral. It was like quite a lot.’

After careful consideration, Johansen Bell said that she is not going to pursue legal action – but she is demanding an apology.

‘There has been legal communication, but nothing is getting pursed,’ she said. ‘It’s like it’s such a fine line between what you can trademark. There are consumer laws where I can say that she’s stealing like my customer base, or she is damaging my brand reputation. 

People were quick to point out similarities between Jenner's new designs and those by Johansen Bell when the star dropped her latest collection in February

People were quick to point out similarities between Jenner’s new designs and those by Johansen Bell when the star dropped her latest collection in February

‘There are loopholes and there are ways around it, but it’s such a nasty fight and I’m just not in a place where I want to do that.’

She continued: ‘I think she should care more. It is just not fair. Instead of going quiet about it, she could have messaged me and said, “I am sorry.” She could have said, “Sorry about this I see the similarities.” An apology goes a long way. 

‘I hope that this is a lesson for her. She needs to get put in her place. No one is too big for the power of the people. ‘But she is already onto the next thing anyways.’

When contacted by DailyMail.com, Khy denied Johansen Bell’s claims. 

Jenner launched Khy in October 2023 and has since launched four collections. 

It wasn’t her first foray into fashion having launched teen label Kendall and Kylie back in 2012 with her sister Kendall Jenner.

She was later propelled to billionaire status with her Kylie Cosmetics, which launched in 2014, and most recently launched a perfume, Cosmic, and her own line of hard-alcohol Spritzers – Sprinter. 

Speaking about Jenner’s multiple business ventures Johansen Bell said: ‘If you’re not authentic with what you’re promoting, it’s so obvious to your customer base. It doesn’t matter who you are you can be Kylie Jenner and still not be successful.’

The Australian is not the first designer to accuse Jenner of copying designs. 

European designer Betsy Johnson, not to be confused with the American fashion designer Betsy Johnson, blasted Jenner on social media in the wake of Khy’s launch.

Betsy Johnson  - not to be confused with American fashion icon Betsey Johnson - also claimed Khy concepts were copied from her label, Products

Betsy Johnson  – not to be confused with American fashion icon Betsey Johnson – also claimed Khy concepts were copied from her label, Products

Jenner released a set of puffer jackets that people suggested were ripped off from Ye's line

Jenner released a set of puffer jackets that people suggested were ripped off from Ye’s line

Jenner's former brother-in-law Kanye West, 46, famously wore a voluminous puffer during the Donda listening event at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta back in 2021

Jenner’s former brother-in-law Kanye West, 46, famously wore a voluminous puffer during the Donda listening event at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta back in 2021

‘We emailed Kylie and all her team @products.ltd concept and language and a line sheet 6 MONTHS AGO,’ she wrote.

‘INTERESTING CONCEPT KYLIE:… INTERESTING. Thanks for the co-sign … F**k your support,’ she wrote. 

The following month, in November 2023, Jenner was accused of copying designs from her former brother-in-law Kanye West’s Yeezy collection of Puffer jackets. 

The backlash came after Jenner announced on Instagram that she will be releasing five styles of puffers in cobalt blue, black, and stone shades beginning November 15. 

‘Everybody acting like Kanye didn’t invent this whole look,’ wrote one person on Instagram.

Another added: ‘Now we know where all the Adidas/Yeezy unsold merchandise went.’

Aside from design theft, Jenner has also been accused of ‘perpetuating the fast fashion industry’ with her dresses, tops, skirts, and pants which are created from fossil fuels rather than sustainable materials.

Of the 38 products from her latest collection of ‘slinky and soft’ mesh items, which was released on February 28, all are made of synthetics – such as spandex, nylon, polyester, or a combination. 

Khy also features a wide selection of faux leather products from the brand’s first drop made out of Polyurethane (PU) leather – a plastic material derived from a synthetic polymer. 

The market for faux leather – or what has been rebranded as ‘vegan leather’ – was valued at an eye-popping $35.4billion last year, and is now fueling a substantial rise in the use of PU leather in clothing products as a cheap alternative. 

The material, however, is not meant to last, is prone to cracking, and wears down more easily. 

Jenner was awarded Best Vegan Fashion Moment at the PETA Fashion Awards in December for Khy’s use of cruelty-free, faux leather, despite the material’s not-so-eco-friendly plastic element.