When Diet Coke cans are used as hair rollers in a Lady Gaga video, you know that the soft drink has a steady place in the fashion scene. Despite only being in its early 30s, the calorie-free soda has spent almost all its life working hand-in-hand with the crème-de-la-crème of the fashion industry.
In 1983, only one year after Diet Coke entered the world, The Coca-Cola Company cleverly purchased Columbia Pictures, rolling out the red carpet of opportunity for the brand to be in the hands of all of Hollywood - a place where everyone would surely see it. In the 90s, fuelled by the emergence of paparazzi culture, the relationship between fashion and Diet Coke was splashed across the newly-emerging celebrity magazines, where the drink was almost stealing the place of clutch bags in the hands of models. Indeed, Diet Coke became perhaps the most readily-available fashion accessory.
Throughout the years, the company has always collaborated with designers, placing the drink further in the spotlight for all that is fashion. In 2013, Rob Bayne, one of Diet Coke’s senior brand managers, said: “Fashion is a top interest of our fans, so we stated designer collaborations to create something new and exciting for our drinkers.”
©Fritz Von Weisenberg
Over the years, Diet Coke has been associated with top designers like Chantal Thomass, Blumarine, Comme Des Garcons, Diane Von Furstenberg, Matthew Williamson, Manolo Blahnik, Marc Jacobs and Zac Posen. In 2009, Diet Coke also worked alongside iconic designers such as Moschino, Versace and Alberto Ferretti, asking them to design bottles to raise money for the victims who survived the earthquake in Abruzzo, Italy. The soda has also collaborated with beauty giants Benefit and Nail Inc.
Then comes a voice as a soundtrack to the already-firmly-formed bond, where renowned German designer Karl Lagerfeld shamelessly admitted: “I drink Diet Coke from the minute I get up to the minute I go to bed. I can even drink it in the middle of the night, and I can sleep. I don’t drink coffee, I don’t drink tea, I drink nothing else.”
Diet Coke and fashion’s exclusive relationship comes to light in Malta once again this year during the Malta Fashion Awards on May 16, of which Diet Coke is a sponsor for the seventh year running, furthering its support for the fashion scene and Maltese designers.
1st and 3rd photo ©Anastasia Zhukova, 2nd and 4th photo ©Fritz Von Weisenberg, 5th photo ©Miklos Xuereb.