The Strawberry Dress That Went Viral
By: Iman Taouil
If you’re an avid user of Twitter, Instagram, and/or TikTok, chances are you’ve heard about the strawberry dress over the past month. The strawberry dress is a pink, ruffly midi dress with puffy sleeves and glittery strawberries embroidered on it, designed by Lirika Matoshi. And it’s making everyone obsessed.
The dress first gained attention in 2019, through a viral tweet, and again in January 2020 when model Tess Holliday wore it at the Grammys. It is now going viral again and more than ever on social media. To the point that people are also drawing fan arts of their favorite celebrities and anime characters in the strawberry dress.
What’s so special about this dress? There could be many answers to this. Firstly, as Vogue describes it, “it’s a dress that Cinderella, a toddler, and an A-list celebrity would all happily wear.”
Secondly, it is more affordable than the dresses you’d typically see on the Grammys’ red carpet: it is sold for 490 dollars on Lirika Matoshi’s website.
Lastly, the strawberry dress fits right into the sought-after “cottagecore” aesthetic. Think countryside cottage, picnic baskets, flowers, and homemade cake and you’ll have an idea of what cottagecore is.
In terms of fashion, cottagecore is typically soft and feminine. It is often associated with long, flowy and ruffly dresses or skirts, corsets, pale or earthy color palettes, gingham prints, bows, and straw hats.
Cottagecore gives a feeling of nostalgia, longing for a simpler lifestyle, and love for nature and pretty things. This aesthetic arose in 2018 on the Internet, but it gained a lot of popularity in 2020, especially during times of quarantine where people reconnected with more traditional skills and hobbies such as baking, sewing, or gardening.
The strawberry dress was made in the summer of 2019, but it still fits the spirit of 2020. The Google searches for “strawberry dress” spiked in late July/early August after tweets about the dress went viral again.
Besides looking like the perfect picnic dress, the strawberry dress also fits the environment-loving spirit of cottagecore. Far from fast fashion and its sweatshops, it is ethically made by an independent team 100% made of women based in New York and Kosovo – where designer Lirika Matoshi was born.
She made a name at the age of 20, in 2016, by selling chokers and embellished tights and socks on Etsy, an online boutique where people sell handmade and second-hand items. Lirika Matoshi never went to a fashion school, but she learned with her sister Teuta Matoshi, who’s also a designer based in Kosovo.