OTH: Right off the bat, how’s it feel to be part of a campaign for a store that you shopped at for X number of years?
K: It feels incredible honestly because I always saw myself as a consumer from the store, I never really thought that we would work together. I saw that there was mutual appreciation because my friends and I would always shop at the store, and Harry or whoever would be working there at the time would always just show appreciation for what we do, no matter what it is. So I always knew the love was there, though I thought it would be like a friendship tip, but it's cool to actually be working with you guys.
OTH: Most of the staff here already knows who you are, but for the people who have not yet heard about you, can you give me a quick 5 sentence blurb “Who is Kyron Warrick?”
K: Well, I would say in short I’m a creative entrepreneur. I’m very multifaceted in the things that I do in relation to fashion and creativity, so I don’t really like putting myself in a box. But, the recent nuances that I’ve been attributing to myself would be styling, creative consulting and design. But all of that stemmed from content creation, because I started on social media like YouTube and Instagram.
OTH: You’ve been doing YouTube for quite some time now, it’s been what? A decade?
K: Yeah, I wanna say 10 years. And seeing how it was actually working, cause and effect wise, I’ve been treating it “seriously” for the past 7, cause the first 3 years honestly just felt like fun and I wasn’t really making any money off of it. And after that I was just at a crossroad so to speak, cause it was coming out of high school and going into college and figuring out what I wanted to do. I always knew it was fashion.
OTH: There was also BMXing and skateboarding for you right?
K: Yeah exactly, I was skating and BMXing and stuff so making that transition was pretty seamless, cause it was just like turning a passion into a career.
OTH: I know you’ve done a video on this but, you’ve come a long way since your first videos, from you showing hauls in front of your keyboard, opening up Jordan Spizikes Popart’s, you got your Diamond Supply and all that stuff, and now you’re out here, rockin’ Rick, Saintwoods, a lot more local brands as well. Can you talk about your progression through fashion?
K: So coming off of what I was saying before, I think my first interests in fashion came from my surroundings, so it was either relatives, which would be my mom or my dad. My dad was super into high end I would say, a lot of designer, so that peaked my interest there from a young age, like 14. And my mom was always really savvy with whatever it may be, it could be something simple or something thrifted. So it was kind of a fusion of those two things. And then the middle ground I wanna say is the interest from my surroundings coming from school and friends, which would be skate culture and everything like that. Something my dad always told me, you have to really care about how you’re perceived and how you’re presented, so that kind of just translated into the brands I was associated with and how I developed my style over the years.
OTH: Back when you were younger you were also rocking Pyrex, Hood By Air, Balenciaga Arenas, all that stuff. That’s not stuff most- how old were you back then?
K: 16 probably.
OTH: Most 16 year olds aren’t rocking that kind of stuff. It’s more common now to see a mix of low-end and high-end fashion, but back then it was pretty wild to see.
K: Yeah, because not too many people were doing it, especially in Montreal. Most people were either on one end of the spectrum or the other, and I was kind of fusing the two because those were the two realms that I was influenced by and I was just on the internet at a very developing time. I feel like I came from Tumblr going into Instagram, a lot of people just jumped straight into Instagram, so a lot of people don’t have a context. With that, it just influenced me to get involved with a lot of things that I was seeing that would appeal to me whether it was Pyrex or Hood By Air. Now you see these brands today and they’re some of the most influential black designers, so it’s really cool to see. Even Balenciaga now, the thrive that it has with Kanye, at that point that it was at, before anything it still had a major impact on me, I just saw the potential.
OTH: You mentioned Tumblr, at what point did you decide to begin your online career? Was it Tumblr then YouTube then Instagram?
K: I think it was all at the same time. I think all of my friends in high school had a Tumblr, and it was all for different things. Like there were different types of niches in my school where I was friends with kids who did graffiti so I was following some graffiti Tumblrs, and none of my friends did fashion so I kind of had to seek that for myself, but then there was influence from all these other places, like the darker sides like the more emo girls. So you kind of put all of that into a box and then there’s pop culture too that influences that, like The Weeknd was heavy on there at the time too. So it was a whole underground scene I want to say, but my YouTube and my Tumblr were probably around the same time, and Instagram just came into the mix randomly. It was smack in the middle of that.
OTH: Has it always been “Gotsweige”?
K: Originally my Instagram was just my full name, and then the following on YouTube started to grow, and I was like maybe it should switch it to that so it could be more seamless, and then there was a trend on YouTube where everyone was switching it back to their names so I was like damn, so I scrapped it on YouTube and kept it as my name, but then Instagram started to go up too with the “Gotsweige” name and I was gonna keep it because I hate flip-flopping between things, so I kept the YouTube with my actual name and the Instagram I kept with the persona name. But in an ideal world, I would just switch it to just Sweige or just Kyron, but I’m just waiting to get into contact with someone at Instagram. I feel like I’ve outgrown the “Got” part but “Sweige” will always be a thing because I’ve developed it for so long.
OTH: Can you explain how you got to this persona? How did you get “Gotsweige”?
K: It’s a funny ass story. It’s like a play on influence type of thing, not to be an egomaniac or anything but it was just a really funny train of events that happened at the time where I wanted to make the YouTube channel. There was this girl in my art class and she was annoyed with the word “swag” because people were abusing it for no reason and just being obnoxious highschool kids obviously. I think she was just tweaking, spazzing over this and I was like it’s not even worthy of you going crazy cause people are just being kids and I was like I bet you I could make a word just as annoying as “swag” to her. She was just like “fuck off, whatever.” and in the span of 2 weeks everyone was using “sweige”. I had kids I didn’t even know using the word and I was like this is kinda weird, what's going on here? It was around that time that I was toying with the idea of making a YouTube channel and everything just because I was consuming so much YouTube at the time, and also I was using it for BMX and skating and I wanted to do that transition so it all just fit at a weird time so I just used it, I had no other idea and I didn’t wanna use my name.
OTH: You did an interview with Maison Coterie back in 2017 where you mentioned that you don’t like the label of influencer, the attraction that being a public figure means, and you don’t like keeping yourself in a box. Can you speak more about that?
KYRON OUT IN NYC
K: I’ve seen it happen for myself getting more involved with the fashion industry as a whole. It’s always kind of limited me by saying exactly what I do, so that’s why I’m so spacey with it, and that kind of allows me to have this weird, mysterious allure, and it kinda happened in LaSalle when I was with you. A lot of teachers would ask me what I was doing or what type of career I was trying to pursue and I would always bounce around the question because I never really wanted to say that I was doing content creation and then taking jobs that were stemming off of that, because that doesn’t really sound concrete to a lot of people that are older. So yeah, I never really said one thing I wanted to do because I saw how others in the fashion industry would be like, if you’re a YouTuber that has a negative connotation, or if you’re a stylist you have to hit this standard of elevation, consulting you have to show these credentials of all these brands you’ve worked for. All these things that I’ve done are a melting pot of them all, and they kind of work for me. I’m adaptable and I apply myself where I think I’m applicable.
OTH: Because you don’t just do YouTube and Instagram, for example, you’ve done designing multiple times for Orée, what was it 4 different times?
K: Something like that, yeah. We’re working on something right now actually. But yeah, I’ve been designing since I was super young, since like 2015, 2016 with Orée and other brands as well, and then consulting I’ve just got involved with within the past two, three years I wanna say, and styling has gotten more serious.
OTH: Are you able to say who you’re consulting with right now?
K: Saintwoods is one of them, I’m working with a couple of New York brands right now as well. It depends on what their wants and needs are. But Saintwoods is one of my favorite people I’ve been working with so far. And then Styling I’ve only done for the past year.
OTH: How’s the styling game been going for you? You’ve been styling your homie Skiifall for a bit now.
K: Yeah, Skiifall is my main client right now, I’m his main stylist. He’s so easy to work with because we have a very parallel vision, like the same brands, and I kind of understand what he likes out of it and I’m very adaptable. I don’t want to force my vision onto him, I take what he likes out of what we like mutually and it comes together. It’s going really well, I’m really happy to be a part of that team. It’s blossomed even more in the past couple of months, I was able to go out to Europe and see the tail end of his tour. He wanted as many of his people around him at that time for a team building experience to see how far he’s come and everyone who’s been there with him so it was a good marker and it showed me how excited I am to be a part of the whole team.
OTH: From styling, even though you’ve only been doing it in the last couple of years, what are some of the challenges you face?
K: Normally, I like that in the early stages of me starting out in styling, there were more obscure opportunities, like women’s styling, which was something completely new to me and my girlfriend Megan would help me out a tremendous amount because she has a men’s wardrobe just as I do, and that was a cool way of getting involved with styling, because we were using our own pieces and we were very rarely doing buy and returns because I feel like a lot of stylists end up doing that and end up putting themselves in a box of looking like an Aritzia mannequin or an Aldo mannequin, which we don’t really wanna do. So we kind of used our own pieces and made it look different from the way we would put it together so it’s not like we're copy pasting it. So she helped me a lot with that (women clients) like I would just pick through items with her, and any of the clients that were hesitant on a couple of things I would tell them to just try and if they weren't comfortable then it's not something they should do, because the main thing is feeling comfortable in the clothes, cause if not then it translates onto the content that you’re doing. Like you’re not going to look your best if you don’t feel confident because that’s what the clothes are supposed to do.
OTH: Do you think there’s space for you to eventually open up something of your own?
K: Most definitely. I’m in the space where I’m toying with the idea right now. I don’t really wanna promise anyone anything just because I’m going through the motions of figuring out if this is something I wanna pursue. I’m like sampling a couple of things right now and the main thing I brought up in a couple of interviews that I’ve been doing recently where people ask a similar question, I don’t want it to just be seen as a brand, because I’ve been talking about the idea of what’s life gonna be like past YouTube? Because I feel like a lot of people live in the moment too much, including myself. But, I know that there’s a time slot for YouTube, I’m not gonna be doing YouTube when I’m 40, and I’m trying to think of what’s the lifespan after that, and what are things that I could propel forwards and do afterwards. The brand is the biggest thing of course, but I want it to just be more than clothing. I want to get more into artwork and producing film, and gallery work, photography, furniture, a bunch of things like that. But I know everyone's main focus of what I can offer from a product is clothing and then it'll have a snowball effect from that.
KYRON IN PARIS, FRANCE WITH SKIIFALL
OTH: Right now you’re doing a lot of creative consulting, you started off on YouTube and now you’re also dabbling a bit in styling as well. Was there ever someone that you looked up to as an inspiration to do all the things that you do?
K: Martin Margiela is like my favorite artist/designer and Rick Owens are the two designers/creatives that I’ve always modeled what I like to do. On the Margiela side it’s like the mysterious element, because eventually when I get into all of the things I want to get into I don’t want to have to promote them in order for them to translate to people. I don’t want to have my face selling the products, I want them to sell themselves. And Rick was like turning something that might not be seen as beautiful, like whether it was a slab of marble, people are able to appreciate it. Even baggy silhouettes, a lot of people looked at that as sloppy, and it’s actually very tasteful and drapeful. A person that’s a bit more on the creative side that’s a bit younger that I always appreciated was Luka Sabbat. His model is very similar to the way that I think, you start off in fashion and then if you have other ideas that go into art or furniture, you’re able to do those things. Even what he does with Noah with Hot Mess, where he’s able to do gallery work with photography or other types of art installations, that’s other things that I would love to get involved with as well because they’re in the same breath as fashion but they’re completely different and they’re a lot more adventurous I’d say and less streamlined. I feel like eventually I could get tired of making a t-shirt or a hoodie, but I don’t think I’d ever get tired of trying to pursue something like that.
OTH: Are there any other artistic paths that you’re experimenting with that you'd wanna mention?
K: Mainly just developing the brand, cause it’s in the sampling stages. Besides that, like I said before, just focusing on developing that and making sure it's the best representation of products that I’ve always wanted to do. Then eventually getting involved in lifestyle products like you said, but for now it’s just all the preliminary stuff really. Identifying what the brand DNA is gonna be, knowing what I’d be able to put onto other brands like Orée that are separate from the brand but still in the same breath. The main things to focus on would be the Orée collab that we’re probably gonna do before the end of this year, and then my stuff hopefully by spring/summer, but it depends on sampling, we’ll have to see.
OTH: You just spoke about how you doubled down on YouTube in the last couple of years and you’re seeing a lot of growth out of that, seeing as you’re so multifaceted and do so many things, what’s been the biggest difficulty to keep you focused and being able to grind out one specific thing?
K: The thing that keeps me focused is structure I would say. When I put the pressure on myself to double down on YouTube, I realized that consistency is like the M.O. that YouTube kind of follows with its algorithm, so I just knew that if I drop every week, it’ll grow even if it’s slow it’s gonna go up no matter what the content is. And I was making quality content, I wasn’t just making it to make it, I was finding an actual thing to drop every week. But after figuring out that formula, it was just finding out what my schedule was gonna look like. Am I gonna drop every single week on a certain day, or is that too much pressure on myself? So I gave myself a couple of days that I like to drop and if it doesn’t happen, it’s okay, I just have to be flexible with what other things are coming into my schedule too because every week is different. Like this week, I have a Vans event, then I have to do a design session with Ray for Orée, then I have a meeting with my intern on Thursday, and then next week, I don’t even know what it looks like because I only know things by week now. So it’s about time management. That was the biggest struggle for me at first, but once I figured it out it became easy. But this is the first time that I’ve taken a week off YouTube in the past 5-6 months.
OTH: As a kid who used to go lining up at Exclu to buy Bred 11 Retros, to doing a commercial with Footlocker, what would you say was your best/coolest opportunity that you’ve had that came from the hard work you put into your YouTube and Instagram?
K: The Footlocker one was very crazy to me, because I was in the room with a lot of people I never thought I’d be in a room with. For example, the 4YE brothers, I remember watching their videos and now Trey’s a homie of mine. So it’s a very weird way that the world turns out in an odd sequence of events, but the Footlocker thing was really big to me. But I just know that there’s always bigger and better ones to come. But Footlocker and Farfetch were the two that I was like “Shit, that’s kinda crazy.” But I’m always surprised at what hits my emails, like sometimes I’m like, “Is this real? This makes no sense.” I even just did a footlocker campaign again. It wasn’t modeling, it was a reel and I was like “Am I really a guy that’s gonna do reels?” but it forced me to be creative because I hate corny TikTok, I can’t do it, it’s just not me, and everyone would look at me sideways for doing it and I don’t feel natural doing it myself. So it challenged me creatively to do something that I wasn’t comfortable with, and I like the way that I did it. It’s a lot more cinematic and less TikTok-ee, so I think that’s the formula I’d approach it with. I’m not gonna do them all the time but if it comes down to it that’s how I’d execute it.
OTH: You’ve also been working a lot more with SSENSE Montreal and doing their in store shopping and stuff like that. In the last year, what’ve you been setting your sights on?
K: I guess the whole goal that I gave myself for this year was mainly to scale the brands that I’m collaborating with and to not lose touch with my core audience that’s still interested in emerging brands and young talent. From a young age I was always really interested in designer brands and fashion designers in general, so when I had the opportunity to work with some of these more established brands like SSENSE and Farfetch I was really excited. It’s been about a year since I started working with Farfetch and SSENSE has been a bit more recent but both of them I’m super grateful for because they’re both companies that were so out of reach and out of touch for me when I was younger. They were just things I would browse and shop on, though I couldn’t really afford it. Even now it’s not the easiest thing to afford and I get that for people and that’s why I propose the low-key streetwear brands, videos and other things where people can have alternatives or vintage. But that’s the beauty of the brands I’ve been working with recently. It’s showing me that the impossible is kinda possible to some degree. That’s what I’m really striving for moving into 2023 as well. I’m trying to lock in a deal with Stock X at the moment and that just follows suit with the brands I’m trying to partner with and just keep growing that blanket of top tier companies and showing that I’m able to take my brand partnerships seriously and really scale it to that type of degree.
OTH: That’s amazing. Especially seeing from the content you’ve been doing with SSENSE. Like the whole Ecom modelling for the Drew House release, could you explain how that came about?
K: A member from PR had contacted me and my partner, Meggy, and asked if we would be interested in being part of this activation that they were doing at SSENSE Montreal. Basically they were gonna take a small group of influencers and just do a styling session with Ryan who’s the creative director of Drew House, but what we didn’t know was that our message was a little more bespoke for us because we were supposed to be doing this Ecom photoshoot where we were only supposed to do like 3 outfits not a full day of modelling just cause they had to set up what they normally set up at their studio but at the store. So basically they just set it up at the studio and it was really exciting because I never actually thought that I’d be able to do that through that lens. Hopefully eventually I’ll be able to do it to a more elaborated degree, but it was just more popup style and they weren’t actually able to use the photos for online because the lighting wasn’t EXACTLY as they use in the studio because the environment was different so it didn’t pass their QC but hopefully down the line I’ll be able to actually do that and model for their Ecom because that’s always been a goal of mine. To break through that basis of not having to be this traditional very slender model, I’m happy that they even took the risk to do that to begin with because the original goal was to actually have me and Meggy on the site, where she’s a lot shorter than the traditional SSENSE model and I’m a lot more averagely weighted than normal SSENSE models. It’s just breaking those traditions.
KYRON AT SSENSE X DREW HOUSE ACTIVATION
OTH: To have that difference of “Hey, can you make some reels for Footlocker?” or “Hey, can you come participate in this activation for Drew House?” where you actually come in and model, how do you feel about that difference between the informal content creation and that more personalised activation where you really get to participate in a message?
K: I like the in person interactions a lot more because it just feels like we’re getting back to normal so to speak because with covid everything was kind of out of touch and everyone was still able to create content on their own because you didn't need other people to execute what you were doing all alone. But with these campaigns, activations, events, fashion shows or anything like that, those are all things that rely on in person experiences and communication and that kind of dialogue. I’m always really excited for all of that because I like meeting new people, having those connections, and I feel like that’s the real part of the fashion industry that’s the most special and unique about it. Same thing with any other art scene, you like art because you’re able to go to a gallery and connect with a person that is interested in the same type of art, or you go to a concert and it’s the same thing with music, you have these like-minded people in the same environment who are able to hone in on the same idea.
OTH: Definitely must’ve been such a game changer, especially since it was such a huge thing. Hella line ups, tons of people just screaming, it was a big activation.
K: Yeah haha, it was really crazy. It was really intimidating too to have that line of people out there for Biebs, but it was definitely crazy to have been a part of that. We weren’t really sure what to expect of that in general because they of course gave us like a blanket statement but things could change at any moment and we weren’t sure what we were in for but it was a really great one to say the least.
OTH: Have you done something similar in size with Farfetch yet?
K: With Farfetch it’s more YouTube integrations for the moment, but hopefully moving forward with them, my goal is to maybe do some campaign work with them. They’ve done a lot of editorial campaigns with creatives in the past so that’s the next step that I’m looking to do with them. I’ve done a few YouTube integrations with them and it feels really natural to me. I've always done that even with other brands and stuff, but I’m just ready for the next step and I think they are as well. I think we’ve done the most we can with the YouTube integrations… I mean there’s always room for more, I feel comfortable doing them but I think the next step is to really get more involved in campaigns and stuff like that.
OTH: Tell the story behind ADAPTURE. A lot of the stuff you do is putting people on to those smaller brands so that you can show people that styling isn’t always about being in the most expensive shit out there. There’s smaller brands that you can help by supporting them by buying their products that are just as good, if not better. So just tell us more about this.
K: It really started very organically. Shane, the owner of ADAPTURE, just wanted to have a conversation with me. Had worked with Haven in the past and he was just telling me his background and what his plan was for the brand, and he just really wanted to create basics and essentials for the everyday wardrobe for anyone. Just having that classic piece of clothing that you could work around in any wardrobe, and I’ve always liked that. I feel having those staples is really key in building style and a wardrobe. I really liked what he was doing and he proposed the idea of collaborating, and I’m always up for collaboration if it’s with the right brand and it felt very spontaneous and right to do. Especially because his craftsmanship is really up there and felt really up to par with what I wanted to convey if it were through clothing. So I’ve been obsessed with pants and he wanted to do a pair so I was down to do it. It felt right. The way that they’re crafted is by an ex-employee of Veilance so the stitch work is super top tier and the fabric construction is recycled high quality materials. Just a bunch of really cool ideas and it carries all my values with upcycling, the fit, the colour pallet, it was just really cool.
KYRON FOR ADAPTURE
OTH: How do you want to be remembered through your work?
K: I just want my work ethic to be remembered, and also the way I see the world. My perspective and take on certain things, whether it be art or product. Also I guess the way I think or carry myself, because a lot of people have said for me that I’m really humble and soft spoken and I don’t really take up too much space in a room, even though people say my presence takes up a lot of space for the things that I do, but I just try to not get caught up in my head about numbers. It’s really about humbling yourself and carrying yourself with a kind regard, because ego is the one thing that destroys everyone.
OTH: To the people who are saying that Montreal is just playing catchup, what do you have to say?
K: They have to understand that there’s cities that have a heavy presence which are like Toronto, LA, New York, London, Paris, all of these places where people are like “this is where you have to be.” The thing is, the places that you might not think to go to sometimes have a charm to them that’s just as appealing as the heavy footprint that these bigger cities have. I think a good example of that is if I went to Trois-Riviere, I might not have thought to take a trip or go on vacation there, but you can find the charm in anything you end up doing there.
OTH: Is there anyone local that you’d want to collaborate in some way with?
K: I don’t think I’ve ever had a chance to talk to Kaytra but I like him. Who else? I feel like everyone else is kind of the homies, Kaytra's just the only one I’ve never really got the chance to talk to.
OTH: What would you approach him with?
K: I think we could do some cool editorial stuff like styling or maybe even visuals. If there was some type of campaign stuff or a music video we’d kill that.