Leaders of the New School: Ian Connor

If you don’t know who Ian Connor is by now, then you probably haven’t been paying too much attention to where fashion is heading, and it might be a good idea to start now. Ian Connor has been making waves lately in the fashion world which is why the 22-year-old calls himself “King of the Youth”.

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Some may agree with Ian! The young fashion icon has been living a pretty unordinary lifestyle so early in his career. He’s modeled for Kanye West’s highly anticipated debut fashion line on the biggest stage of fashion: New York Fashion Week, filling his little black book with famous porn stars and models, kicking it with the A$AP Mob, sitting front row at Raf Simons’ fashion show, and styling for Wiz Khalifa. He’s pretty much coasting through life like a modern day rockstar.

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His fearless and I-don’t-Give-A-F*** style and personality has him hanging with Virgil Abloh and having dinner with Yeezus himself in a pair of Skechers. He’s also walked for respected designer labels like BAPE, Astrid Anderson, and Shane Gonzales.

Complex Magazine managed to catch up with the busy fashion icon to talk about walking for Kanye West at NYFW, A$AP Mob, his personal life, and upcoming projects.

You’re surprisingly reclusive given your persona.
I stay away from large crowds. If you look at Angelo from Supreme or Eddie Cruz from Undefeated, they’re extremely low-key even though they’ve had this huge impact and have helped the people they’ve selected to help. So, instead of having to be around a shit-load of people I’d rather just find everybody over time.

You also don’t get fucked up.
I don’t smoke weed or pop pills. I only smoke cigarettes and just started getting on my drunk shit maybe eight months ago. I drink twice a month, if that.

You’ve mentioned on Twitter that drugs would be a suicide mission. Why?
My mind is already crazy. I’d just become less perceptive. I’d overthink shit and my mind would just be on hyperdrive. I’d get paranoid. I do know the power that I have and just going into a room high I’d be thinking about who’s this person and that person and thinking too hard on it, because a lot of people who do not matter to me are in my life. I don’t need that.

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Are you still as tight with A$AP Mob since you moved here?
Those are all my brothers. I talk to them every day, like Nast, Illz. Rocky’s my manager, so if I’m not literally with him, I’m talking to him every day. We’re all focusing on our own shit but when we come together we come together.

When’s the first time you met them?
I don’t even exactly remember. I looked up to A$AP Bari to where I just understood what he was about. Bari was that fashion nigga. I knew he wasn’t rich but he had rich clothes. He was a true, I-don’t-give-a-fuck-type nigga, and I was like that too. Even if I didn’t have a home, I was sleeping on the floor, I always made sure I had my clothes.

But how’d you insert yourself into the crew?
I chased behind Bari like a fucking dog, like, “Hey, what’s up, Bari?” All the time. I’d be like, “When we hanging?” And he’d be like, “I’m not hanging out with you today, little nigga.” I’d be like, “Aw, fuck you!” But still follow him around. I’d take pictures of him as he was walking away. I looked up to Bari so much until we were inseparable. We practically lived together. We traveled every state together ’cause we understood each other. That was the lifestyle. We got money. I could have five racks in my pocket and sleep on the floor; I could have zero money and finesse a young kid to book my hotel for a week straight. I just live how I want to live, no boundaries.

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You were similarly enamored with Skechers at one point. Was that just on some fashion-troll-stunt-shit?
That was a realization. I was thinking about how everything I own is name brand. It’s not supposed to be about that. It’s about style. Everyone called the Raf [sneakers] ugly at first. They were all like, “Ew, what are those?” But then when they saw that I was wearing them and that Rocky was wearing them, or Bari, then they weren’t ugly anymore. I thought about how people talk down on Skechers when they fucking look the same as Rafs. They’re so similar. They’re the same idea. They’re just different colors.

So it’s performance art?
I don’t wear them anymore but I felt it when I did. I wanted to make a point. I wore these most of the time in Paris. I ate dinner with Kanye West in fucking Skechers. He commented on them but he actually got it. The next week, we were at the A.P.C. party and I had on my Rafs and he goes, “I see you’ve got on your Rafs today. I guess they’re the same as Skechers.”

Whether you hate or love Connor’s style and/or personality, you can’t deny that he is a young innovator, setting blaze to the road less traveled by most. You can check out more from the interview at Complex.com

 

Brandon Jordan

I'm an art slut, sports junkie, and Jennifer Lopez's baby's father....oh and I also write dope sentences.