Youtopia is a concept that has really been active since April 2019. If you have not read my first ever post in which I outline the intentions of this concept – you can read it by clicking here. The instagram account which I currently have as ‘@You.Topia’ has not always been linked with the Youtopia idealogy…
December 2018 – this was when I started the account. The name of the account was ‘@fatal_fits’. Essentially I saw instagram accounts with over 100k, 200k, 300k followers by just posting photos of ‘hypebeast’ outfits across the world and I believed I could replicate that success.
Nevertheless, at the beginning of my ‘Fatal Fits’ project – I was welcomed with a lot of new followers and likes every time I posted. As a result of this I think I gained 100 followers In my first full day from posting. Everything was working well. Here is the only screenshot of my ‘Fatal Fits’ account – I believe this is the 2nd or 3rd day of me starting my account.
I was having a lot of fun just seeing a lot of likes on my photos. However, approximately 4 weeks into my ‘Fatal Fits’ tenure I had lost interest. I had no personal interactions. I was not growing as fast as I was. It should not be all about the numbers but with an account like this it has to be. There was no real meaning behind the idea. Literally, I was just posting photos of people who I had never seen in my life and was hoping to get a few likes. Unlike Youtopia – there was no drive to maintain the account as there was no personal connection. Here is my first ever story on this account taken on the 1st January at 3:55pm at Paddington station, London.
In fact – I did not delete any photos from my account as I only archived them. Also, all of my stories on ‘Fatal Fits’ are still available:
It was time for a change. I had lost completely lost motivation and I would post with 1 week intervals. April 16 2019 was the day I switched the identity of ‘Fatal_Fits’.
YOUTOPIA IS LIVE
I have a fresh start with this concept. I decided to have a block colour as my profile picture. As you can see from the photo above that is the actual screenshot I took to make my profile picture – to have it all that time later is surreal to me. The reason why I wanted a block colour is because Virgil Abloh had some sort of browny greyish coloured profile picture so I wanted to imitate him. And for the colour turquoise? I could make up some deep reason that the colour turquoise symbolises depth and stability and is beneficial to our mind and body… but I am not going to lie it is just my favourite colour.
Remember the name
I had completed the first step to my transformation by changing the profile and archiving all of my posts. The next step was to come up with a unique username with a meaning. I have an extended post on this topic which you can read here if you have not seen it. But to cut a long story short; the word ‘Utopia’ sprung into my mind. I tried as many combinations to make a username that was not taken with this word. Finally I found one that was available but it resembled something like ‘U.t_o.pi._a”. I needed something more simple and easy on the eye. Suddenly, I was overwhelmed with the idea that I should just replace ‘u’ with ‘you’ and focus the utopian ideas on the individual. And thus ‘You.Topia’ was born. (At first I had two a’s at the end like my URL but shortened that to 1).
The first post
The first ever post on ‘You.topia’ is the only post on my account to have survived the ‘Fatal_fits’ era. Posted on February 19 It was a post in which I expressed my sadness for the passing of Karl Lagerfeld. 16 April is the true first post of my account. Again it touches on a very sad topic like the passing of Lagerfeld.
One day before my first post – The Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris was burning. The sight of it burning was extremely heartbreaking and distressing (especially as I am half-french). The next day I was just looking at photos of the Notre Dame. My first post is a screenshot of Virgil Abloh’s story which was a screenshot of his phone with the phrase “how to donate to rebuild Notre Dame” in the search bar. I had posted that and tagged him with the caption “Valorous Virgil”. To my amazement he had liked my post in about 2 minutes of it being up. So, thank you Virgil.
After that I posted other random photos that I had liked or seen which can be seen in this screenshot which is the first ever screenshot of my ‘You.Topia’ account.
For approximately the first week of my ‘@you.topia’ lifespan – I was alone doing this. And I have to admit I grew quicker in that time period than I have ever. I was finding accounts similar to them but I would not talk to them or anything. Then one day – one glorious day I was added into a group chat with a lot of accounts like mine. A lot of these people I am friends with and still talk to this day.
Here is a little gallery of a load of screenshots I have of people’s accounts in April and other memorable moments from other months. These pictures hold a lot of value to me and maybe to some of you too. Some of the people who are featured on here are some of the most supportive and helpful people and for that I am so thankful.
There was a period of time where I was getting 100 followers a week which was huge to me. At the beginning I used to message my friends in real life on my “@you.topia” account and mess around. Of course at first they had no idea it was me – but then the secret broke out and a lot of people knew I was the person behind ‘@you.topia’. To be honest, I did not mind but the only regret I had was showing people I knew too early – like at 200 followers. I wish I would have kept it a secret until 1000 followers then it would have been a bigger shock. People across my year then began to know who about the account when one of my friends wrote “follow @you.topia” on a lot of peoples shirt’s at a shirt signing. You know who you are.
When my account was flourishing – I was in the midst of my revision and preparation for my GCSE’s. If you are from America – ‘GCSE’s’ are a set of exams that people in the UK take when they are 16 or 15 which allows them to leave school and go to college. Anyways I had always been a studious, diligent and persistent child ever since I was in primary (elementary) school.
There was around 20 exams I needed to study for. There was an insane amount of pressure put on me but I would like to think I dealt with it quite well. I took a break from @You.topia in May as I was channelling all my energy into my revision. Every spare minute I had I was revising about 10 subjects I had exams in. I followed this routine as much as I could for about a month and a half:
- 6:30 – Wake Up
- 8:00 – Go to school
- 3:15 – Leave School
- 4:15 – Start evening revision
- 11:00 – Bed
In there I had limited time to focus on ‘You.topia’ and I went about 5 weeks with out being active. I would post “sorry for not being active – got loads of exams” in the group chats but that was about it.
By the middle of June I was done with all my exams. I could finally go back to ‘You.Topia’. However, this task seemed more difficult than first assumed. I could not find the right moment to just go back to how things used to be on there. I made my first post in a long time when I was in London with one of my best friends. We had entered the huge Selfridges store and saw this:
At that point it was the first personal photo on my account and it was kind of a post of passion. Obviously, I admire Abloh a lot so I was kind of taken aback. The other only time this happened was I was with my friend in Harvey Nichols. We were looking at shoes because there was a ‘Presented By’ pop up and my friend just goes “look at the floor”. On the floor I just see “Keep Off” and I was so startled that even the very kind staff in Harvey Nichols asked my friend if I was alright…
I could write a post on my whole experiences with Virgil in the future. I know I am going a bit off-topic but I have had one instance with Virgil and I did not know whether to laugh or cry. Pictured below are 2 Instagram stories. Taken exactly one week apart:
The left is a story from my personal account and the story on the right is from Virgil Abloh… In the exact same place I was just a week later. Assuming he had like 1 minute to talk to me – I would have shown him my first ever photo which he liked. I would have shown him the time he commented on my photo when I defended him against the media. I would have shown him how much he influenced @you.topia for the better. This proves the world is small – but I will never get that chance again…
Every cloud has a silver lining. Although I was miserable I did not have the chance to meet my inspiration – it motivated me in a strange way. My mindset was “I cannot be upset I missed an opportunity to meet him – To him I am just another fan. If he is going to meet me I want him to already know who I am and not just rely on chance.” That moment right there is the reason why I started this site. I wanted to have an extension to my instagram account where I can speak my thoughts and hopefully some like-minded people would like it. That way I can grow my instagram as I grow my site and vice – versa.
Right now I am posting smoothly on @you.topia along with working on this project. In my ‘return’ story I mentioned how “Just because I have not been on instagram it doesn’t mean I haven’t been working on this concept…”. That ‘project’ is this whole thing.
I would like to address the people who have been in the same group chats as me, commented on my photos and congratulating me on when I reach a follower target. Without people like you then there would be no reason to continue this account. The pure isolation I faced with ‘Fatal_Fits’ made it destined to be difficult to maintain for me. The support is immense and I think the slight element of competition drives us to keep posting. So thank you.
That message draws a close to this post which outlined my ambitions and transformation to evolve to what @you.topia has become today. Thank you.