Though the show took place inside Manhattan’s skyscraping Woolworth Building, Willy Chavarria’s Spring 2024 runway was a California affair. The Fresno-born designer, who consistently references his Chicano roots and SoCal upbringing in his work, enlisted the stylish Compton rapper YG to join his procession of models in a show that wound up among this New York Fashion Week’s best.
“Young Gangsta is a friend of the brand,” Chavarria tells GQ via email. “He is a self-made star and he truly represents how we can use what life has given us and turn it into a success story. His music is real and full of life. I admire him as a person and artist.”
When YG walked through the Woolworth’s gilded doors and down its marble staircase, he did so in one of Chavarria’s signature oversized suits and a pair of white patent-leather, hard-bottomed dress shoes—a variation on the rapper’s shoe of choice these days. YG’s fashion journey has taken him many places, from wearing bandannas and Dickies every day to buying skinny trousers from his local Nordstrom. “I’m still wearing Dickies,” YG told GQ in 2018. “But I added on hard-bottoms with ’em. Like, ‘Bam! It’s happening!’”
In some ways, YG manifested this high-fashion West Coast linkup all those years ago: “I need the fashion world, and just the majority of the world, to be like, ‘Yeah, YG got it. He strappin’ that. He on some shit,’” he said back then. How better to say “I’ve arrived” than by repping for a fellow Californian’s red-hot brand?
Take a behind-the-scenes look at YG’s NYFW debut, from getting ready at the Willy Chavarria showroom to performing at the show’s Boom Boom Room afterparty, below.