BAPE NYC served as a medium to encounter so many incredible people. From iconic entertainers and fashion gods to multi-millionaire businessmen, the second floor of the ‘Busy Workshop’ was my personal space for meeting sessions with them all.
I’ve had several moments of forgetfulness when dealing with certain past acquaintances. In some cases, my attentive silence during a conversation was just my way of trying to figure out who I was actually speaking to (no offense, of course).
Aaron Liaw is surely not on my list of Forgettables. The stylish Canadian has been a loyal BAPE customer ever since my Omarion braid days. A year before my departure from Nigo’s former fashion empire, Aaron stopped by the shop to cash out (per usual). That was my first time seeing him in ages, so we definitely reminisced and since then remained in contact through social media. I was pleasantly surprised to discover he had quite a strong following on the Internet.
Aaron’s nonchalant showing of his splendid lifestyle online prompted me to have a sit-down with him to dig a little deeper into his wonderful world. There’s always more than meets the eye, so this will be a perfect chance to really understand the man behind the grandeur. Enjoy!
FRENDY: Alot of people may know you strictly from Instagram where your flex fits and lavish lifestyle are on full display. What are some of the biggest misconceptions about you?
Aaron: One of the biggest misconceptions about me is that I only buy and like "expensive" things. That is 100% false. I am a resourceful and smart shopper. Rarely do I ever buy things at retail, and if I do pay retail; chances are I sell some things that I don't wear anymore to help make closet space. I never just go blow money for no reason. I'm not the type of person to buy something just to flex on Instagram and then end up selling it the day after. If you scroll all the way down on my Instagram to the first few photos, you will see that I've been wearing and copping fresh shit from the start. I'm not new to the streetwear/fashion culture. I've been on ISS since 2007 and did not suddenly start buying gear since Instagram started. I actually kind of hate this new Instagram hypebeast culture because I know over 90% of these guys you see "flexing" don't know shit about the history of sneaker/streetwear game and just started buying because they can get some likes. If you notice on my pics, I never tag brands or use hashtags. That shit is wack and just shows you how bad these people care about getting more followers & likes from the shoes or clothes that they are wearing. You can smell the corniness of people through the iPhone screen from their 20 hashtags and 15 tags.
FRENDY: Which part of Canada are you from exactly?
Aaron: I'm from Toronto, Canada. 6ix side let it fly.
FRENDY: What was your childhood like there?
Aaron: My childhood was sports 24/7. I played competitive AAA hockey from 9 till I was 14. Then I changed to competitive tennis from 14 to 18. I was playing a lot of tournaments and was training almost every day. Balancing school, sports, and work was hard for me because the hours were insane. I remember having to bring my tennis bag with me into Champs Sports on some days because I didn't have time to go home. I would go straight from the tennis courts to the mall and clock in for my shift. Champs taught me a lot about time management though.
FRENDY: The last time I saw you at my old workplace you were with a couple of friends, 2 of which included the famous Bent-Lee brothers. How long have you known them for?
Aaron: I've known the Bent-Lee brothers since I was 14. We all played tennis growing up so we would see each other at tournaments all the time. Me and Kai have had some crazy battles throughout our OTA (Ontario Tennis Association) careers. A lot of broken rackets and questionable calls happened. We also all went to the same high school together, Vaughan Road Academy. To be 100% honest with you, Kai was the first person that influenced me in the sneaker game. He would always show up with a brand new pair of Nike SB's. He was on that shit early during the pink box era.
FRENDY: Can you tell me about Fring’s?
Aaron: Fring's is that place in Toronto where you can get an amazing meal and feel like you're somewhere else in the world. The vibe of the restaurant is like no other in our city. Where else can you eat oysters and chicken sliders while listening to trap music?
FRENDY: Since we’re on the subject of restaurants, what are some of your favorite spots to dine in?
Aaron: The majority of my favorite spots are actually in NYC. I think Ben's Pizza in SoHo is one of the best I've had! J.G. Melon's on 3rd & 74th makes a crazy cheeseburger. Minetta Tavern's "Black Label" burger is on point as well. I'm a big burger guy so of course I love Shake Shack. But, I think In N Out is better.
FRENDY: I’m sure tons of people are dying to know so I’ll just go ahead and ask; what is your occupation?
Aaron: I own ProLocker.com. We are currently going through re-development right now, but be on the lookout for the new launch.
FRENDY: You’re a pretty fly fella; do you have any interest in entering the fashion realm?
Aaron: I am actually helping my boy open up a fashion boutique in Toronto. I just want to help bring a unique shopping experience to the city. The shopping up here is not the greatest, so it would be great to have a refreshing spot.
FRENDY: What are some of your favorite brands at the moment?
Aaron: My favorite brands are APL, Saint Laurent, BAPE, Supreme, Fear of God, Balmain and John Elliott.
FRENDY: I see that you’re an avid traveler. Out of the many places you have been globally, which is your favorite?
Aaron: The best place I've been to has to be Italy. The food is just so good out there. Best meals I've had are all in Italy. The culture over there is very laid back and easy going.
FRENDY: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Aaron: In 10 years I see myself feeling good, living better.
FRENDY: Thank you for taking the time to shed more light on your life. Are there any last words you’ll like to leave with the readers?
Aaron: Stay humble, stay hungry. We are all just trying to live better than yesterday.
Written by: Frendy Lemorin
Photos by: Omair Khan