This story originally appeared in i-D’s Out Of The Blue issue, no. 366, Winter 2021. With thanks to Tiffany & Co. Order your copy here.
Since bursting onto the scene with A$AP Mob a decade ago, A$AP Nast – aka Tariq Amar Devega – has been part of a revolutionary wave in hip-hop. Breaking out with the song “Trillmatic”, which reached back to the mid 90s NYC boom-bap and forward into the new world A$AP Mob were busy creating, the group mixed Harlem’s rap history with the new sounds coming from the South. It was equal parts laconic and charismatic. It was also very cool. And in the decade since, Nast has made that cool his currency, working with Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton, walking their shows and starring in their campaigns, and recently releasing a capsule collection during Copenhagen Fashion Week. We caught up with him in Los Angeles to discuss fashion, family and the art of doing what you want.
HardWear wrap necklace in 18k gold, I.D. bracelet in 18K gold, bracelet and Signet ring in 18k gold, T1 Ring in 18k gold with diamond. 1837® Makers Slice Ring in 18k gold, T True narrow ring in 18k gold with pavé diamonds and wide ring in 18k white gold with pavé diamonds TIFFANY & CO.
I wanted to start at the beginning and ask you about your first fashion memories. What were they? Was it a music video or an image in a magazine or a piece of clothing?
I don’t know if I remember the first time I was interested in fashion. I’ve always had an unorthodox and unexpected relationship with fashion. Even when I was a kid I was different with the way I dressed. I never aimed to be in the fashion world or anything like that.
Growing up, what brands did you aspire to? Did you look at what the older kids were wearing?
A lot of it came to me from my mom actually, and how she dressed me, and from me not wanting to go to school in the same thing all the other kids were wearing. I was very picky. I think that stuck with me – not wanting to look like anyone else, being a bit unorthodox. I can’t quite explain it.
So how much influence did your mum have in terms of developing your own personal style?
She actually played a very, very huge role in it. In the late 80s and early 90s my mom was a real ghetto girl. She was in spandex, the huge goose bomber jackets, the Reebok Classics, the doorknockers. My mom loved sweatpants and Air Max trainers. You know? That always stuck with me growing up.
A$AP Nast wears coat and T-shirt COMME DES GARCONS. Jacket and trousers model’s own. Cardigan MAISON MARGIELA. Hat UNDERCOVER. Boots BOTTEGA VENETA. All jewellery (worn throughout) TIFFANY & CO.
She always had that kind of style and it stuck with me. I’m still a fan of that stuff, …….