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What are your earliest memories of a coveted shoe you received?
The first one that I can remember was a Jordan 12s in the
Bred colorway and I begged my mom for them. I remember telling her, “Yo, I need this shoe and it comes out on this day. I’m gonna have to miss school or if you’re gonna stand in the line for me, you might be late for work.” She thought I was crazy. This is after I begged for every other Jordan there was. She was like, “Boy you crazy” but she also knew I was serious. My birthday was coming up and she went to the store, was late for work and grabbed me a pair of Jordan Bred 12s. I remember looking at them knowing my mom must’ve been like, “It’s his birthday, let me hold him down.”
My mom still has them somewhere, she actually found them the other day at her house, they were in the basement. She still has them straight Grailed style; it was that was the shoe that kinda set it off. From then I said to myself, “Okay, now that I got a pair, I wanna continue to get as many pairs as much as I can.” I fell in love.
Being a sneaker enthusiast as a kid, what was it like to get to design your own shoe?
I mean, to this day it’s still one of the best moments and feelings of all time. You grow up idolizing all these different athletes who have shoes from Jordan, LeBron to Bo Jackson. All of these different athletes had their signature shoe that you’d idolize and now you’re one of them. Being able to play football and do it was just like a whole other accomplishment—it just doesn’t happen. For me, to be looked at as one of those guys—partner with Nike and have your sneaker on the wall—was a dream come true and something that could never be taken away.
What was the process of designing your own shoe like?
It was a long process. In the beginning, it’s all introductory—them getting to know me, what I liked and what I didn’t like, I literally gave them everything. I told them my entire childhood, colors that stood out to me, my favorite car–which was like,
Why do you want to know my favorite car? But they take that design of that car and try to implement it into a shoe, and take those design cues to make a breakdown of me—the real me not just what you see on TV or in magazines.
The design team came to see me in [New] Jersey and I flew out to Portland, it took almost a year to really get the process down and get the shoe that we wanted, then finally doing colorways and all that stuff.
What’s your go-to sneaker silhouette?
My favorite shoe of all time is the Jordan 3.
Black Cement 3s are by far my favorite shoe because you can dress them up or dress them down, they’re a classic. But my go-to silhouettes are Nike Air Force 1s, they were a go-to when I was younger too. Those shoes couldn’t front on you and they were like 50 to 60 bucks. When I was younger, my mother could afford that, so I got a bunch of them and they went well with everything. I used to wear jerseys back in the day so I used to rock 'em with the jerseys. They hold a special place.
What’s the dynamic like between you and your stylist?
My stylist is Rachel Johnson and there’s not a day that goes by where you see her and she’s not fabulous. She’s always dressed to impress, whether it be a casual day to pick some stuff out or we’re actually at an event. She’s, by far, the most stylish person I know.
Our dynamic started off with her coming in and figuring out what my personal style was. We discussed what my look is now, and what we wanted it to grow into. Then, we got my closet to represent that and I think that we’ve progressed to a point where I know where I wanna be; it’s a matter of cultivating that. We also brainstorm and ideate different collaborations and new trends to try—we always talk. There’s not a day that goes by that we don’t have some type of conversation. I call her my fashion fairy godmother.
What are some of your favorite stores in the world?
A store in Milan called  Corso Como and a store in Milan also called Excelsior—obviously Kith New York, Supreme New York and Concepts New York. The London Palace Skateboards shop is my favorite. Then, I’m also a department store guy, so like Barney’s and such. I’m full scale, you know? High-end and low-end. Gotta be able to do both.