Taylor Swift Accused of Stealing ‘folklore’ Logo From ‘Minority-Owned Business Owner’
Taylor Swift's creative team was accused of copying the logo of an independent Black-owned business for the artist's folklore album merchandise—namely, one of Swift's signature "cardigan" cardigans.
"This morning, it came to my attention that musician [Taylor Swift] is selling merchandise to go along with her new album folklore. She is currently selling merchandise with the words 'the folklore' printed on them," business owner Amira Rasool wrote on Instagram July 24, the day of Swift's album release.
"Based on the similarities of the design, I believe the designer of the merch ripped off my company's logo," Rasool continued. "I am sharing my story to bring light to the trend of large companies/celebrities copying the work of small minority-owned business owners. I am not going to let this blatant theft go unchecked."
Rasool is the founder of TheFolklore.com, a luxury "online concept store delivering Africa and the diaspora’s top contemporary designer brands," according to the brand's Instagram page.
The logo for Rasool's brand, which launched in 2018, bears a striking resemblance to the design used on Swift's merchandise, as can be seen in a comparison photo uploaded by Rasool. (Note the placement of the "the," as well as the classic serif font.)
Days after bringing the design snafu to public light, Rasool shared in an update to her followers that she had been in contact with Swift's team. She also revealed that Swift's team has since removed the "the" from the merchandise, and appears to be cooperating with her to rectify the situation.
"Thank you for everyone’s support, I have read all of your messages and I truly appreciate them," she wrote on Instagram. "Taylor Swift’s team took a great first step by removing 'the' from all of the merchandise. We are in conversation with her team about the necessary next steps to make this situation right. Special shout out to my lawyers ... and my sister @nia_rasoolgroup for the guidance and support."
In a tweet, Rasool added that she "commend[s] Taylor’s team for recognizing the damage the merchandise caused to my company’s brand. I recognize that she has been a strong advocate for women protecting their creative rights, so it was good to see her team is on the same page."
Speaking to WWD, Rasool also revealed that the ordeal has drawn hate from some Swift fans who have called her "a b--- and a liar" for speaking out.
"I think there was a lot of damage to my brand for me speaking out. I don’t think I deserved that," she explained.