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PAUSE Meets: Kailand Morris

PAUSE MEETS:

Kailand Morris

Talks modelling at Fashion Week, Dolce & Gabbana, and his father, Stevie Wonder

Interview: Johnson Gold // @Johnson_Gold
Photographer: Sylvain Lewis // @lewissylvain
Styling: Simon NNdjock // @simonnndjock
Featuring: Kailand Morris  // @kailandmorris

Breaking the mould…

Following in the footsteps of one of the most critically and commercially successful artists of the late 20th century, Stevie Wonder, Kailand Morris could have easily taken the path already paved. Opting to steer away from the world of music, the sixteen-year-old Los Angeles native has set his sights on the world of modelling and having already walked for the likes of Dolce & Gabbana is well on his way to success. Taking time away during Paris fashion week, PAUSE got the chance to sit down with the “Superstition” singer’s son…

Suit: Kenzo

For those who don’t know much about you, briefly tell us who you are, where you’re from and how old you are.

I’m Kailand Morris, I am from Los Angeles, California, specifically Calabasas, and I’m 16 years old.

16?! Wow, no way, you don’t look 16!

Everybody says that. People say that I look older than I am.

Maybe it’s an American thing.

Maybe.

You guys look a tad bit older but you still look fresh.

Of course, always fresh, always.

What do you currently do at the moment, are you studying right now?

Yeah, I go to school at this place called Viewpoint, it’s right across the street from my house. I’ve been there since I was like 8 years old I think, so I’ve been there for a while now.

What’s it like growing up in Calabasas?

It’s lit. It’s fun, I have a lot of friends out there because I’ve lived there my whole life so we always kick it and do fun stuff all the time, parties, all that good stuff.

What’s the difference between Calabasas and Los Angeles?

Mostly the people, the people act a lot different, in Calabasas, it’s very laid back and chilled, Los Angeles is more like uptempo, everybody’s just doing their own thing on their own time.

So at 16, what’s been the top country you’ve visited so far, and the best experience you’ve had at age 16?

At age 16 the best place I’ve visited, let me see… I travel a lot but I have to say the best place for some reason is always New York, I always have the best experiences in New York whether it’s hanging out with my friends, family, just New York I don’t know why but I always end up in New York for some weird reason and when I do I always get lit with all my friends. I have to say Paris though is very fun, I love Paris. Definitely, have to come back here soon.

 Suit: Kenzo, Sandals: Louis Vuitton

 Jumper: Kenzo, Trainers: Balenciaga

Is it your first time in Paris?

It’s my second, but I was just a little tiny baby when I came the first time.

This fashion week you’ve been quiet around this season, you’ve walked D&G and Comme Des Garcons, and you’ve attended quite a lot of shows as well. Is this your first fashion week experience?

This is my first fashion week in Paris.

And Milan?

Yeah and Milan. But I did fashion week a lot when I was younger because my mum is a fashion designer, so I’ve always been around this, the whole craziness with all the shows, I’ve been backstage with her shows and all the models just running around getting dressed having to change looks, all of that. This is my first one in Paris and Milan and it was a lot of fun.

So your father’s Stevie Wonder, how’s he inspired you growing up as a teenager?

One thing with my Dad that I really look up to is how hard he works, there’s not one time where I haven’t seen my Dad practicing the piano, recording songs, playing any type of instruments he could get his hands on, and him just writing, coming up with new music to create, he’s always working. One time I was at our house and I came downstairs at 3 in the morning and he was still playing the piano and I was like do you ever sleep? It’s crazy.

Is he like non-stop always working?

Non-stop always working.

And how has that inspired you?

It just shows how hard I have to work in order to achieve the goals I want to achieve and to get to the level I want to get to because my Dad, he is a legend living right now and to see all of the goals he’s accomplished and all the lives he’s changed, it shows that it’s not easy and that it’s going to be a long hard working process to get to.

Top: Uniforme Paris, Sunglasses: Gucci @ MatchesFashion.com, Bag: Louis Vuitton

Shirt & Trousers: Palm Angels, Sunglasses: Fendi

What’s one of your favourite songs from your Dad?

My favourite song is probably Superstition, because back when I was a little younger I used to go on tour with my Dad, and when I told him that that was my favourite song, he was like why don’t you come out and play it with me, so I ended up playing the drums to Superstition because he always closed with that song. So that song has always been a favourite song since day 1.

What was it like going on tour with him?

Man, it is one crazy experience, having to perform for 3 hours, then leave that night and go on the bus or a plane to the next show, it’s very hectic and tiring, very very tiring.

What’s your aspirations and goals for the future?

I potentially want to accomplish a lot, a lot of things, since I’m young I really want to try a lot of new different things, whether it’s music, fashion, but I do really want to get into recording music, putting out a lot of new songs, albums, projects. I want to get into fashion design, that’s one thing I really want to do, and of course continue modelling, because that’s one thing I love to do too.

Shirt & Trousers: Gucci, Boots: Louis Vuitton

So would you say your father and your mum inspired what you want to do as your career as well?

Yeah, it’s like their two careers together, into my career, if that makes sense.

That’s interesting because some people just divert and do something different than what their parents did, but I guess you’ve grown up learning what they do and it’s all kind of taken into you now.

Yeah it’s a lot of my brothers and sisters too, they’ve all followed in potentially the same path as my Dad just going to make music, and I just thought why don’t I just do something different, so that’s why I picked the modelling thing, and of course I’ll always have music within my life and my background because it’s something very special to me, but I just wanted to take a different kind of path towards things.

You’ve modelled for big names already, is there one brand you would love to model for, and if so who would it be?

I have to say, Louis Vuitton, definitely Louis Vuitton man, with Virgil, especially with him being creative director of the men’s category, they have a lot of new crazy amazing things coming out and that’s something I’d definitely want to be a part of.

Would you be surprised if you walked it next year?

I’m going to, I’m going to, it’s something I’ll have to do for sure.

What’s inspired your hairstyle?

Thank you, my Dad always wanted me to get dreadlocks. When I was a baby my I had this gigantic afro, this thing was all the way down to my stomach it was so long, but I cut it and since then I always wanted to grow it back into dreads but I’ve just never been about that whole process because it’s just a very long process, but one day I was just like I’m gonna do this, I just kept letting my hair grow out.

How long did it take?

I think I’ve been growing my hair out for just about a year now, maybe a little less. So I’ve just been trying to get it into that free-form look. I feel like with dreadlocks, it really shows a lot about your personality and your creativity because you can do whatever you want to it, style however you want, so it’s one thing I do love about my hair.

How would you describe your style in one word?

Fly. Yeah, fly or different. Because my style you’re not going to see it every day, it’s like the new wave everything.

What are some of your favourite brands? If I went into your wardrobe what brands would I find?

With my style I like to try to find a lot of clothing designers people really haven’t heard of, trying to find new things that not everybody has, but one brand that I do have in my closet a lot is Gucci. I love Gucci so so much. Whether it’s the shoes, the sweats, the jackets, the shirts, I have it all.

Why do you like Gucci?

I think Gucci has always had that very luxury vibe to it but at the same time a lot of their new stuff to me feels very street so it’s sort of a collaboration between the two, that’s especially why I like the Supreme Louis Vuitton collab, because it’s streetwear meets luxury and it just came out so good.

So that’s kind of your wave then. Streetwear meets luxury.

Yeah.

Nice. What’s your favourite sneaker brand at the moment? Like out of all the sneakers that everyone’s rocking like we have the Yeezy’s from Kanye West, we have the Off-White Jordan’s from Virgil, and you have all these various kind of sneakers, is there one you’re feeling the most?

To be honest with sneakers, if you just throw me a pair of Vans or some Converse I’ll be straight but as far as that I’d definitely go with the Off-White Jordans collab.

Which colourway?

The UNC ones, the blue & white ones, those are by far the freshest shoes I’ve ever seen in my life hands down.

You think so? I don’t like the blue one you know?

Don’t you like it? My favourite shoe ever, ever.

What is it with Vans and Converse in California in general, it’s like such a strong, basically if you don’t have it you’re not from California?

I don’t really know, to be honest, when I was younger I hated Vans and Converse, especially Converse, but one day I went out to the mall and bought them and they just grew on me. I just can’t stop rocking them I don’t know why.

Because they go with everything that’s why.

It’s very versatile it goes with a lot.

What’s your favourite thing during fashion week that you’ve experienced?

One thing is definitely walking the Dolce & Gabbana show, that was a life-changing experience, it was my first show. How big their name is, it was so much fun, I’ve always been in the background of seeing how everything went down when it came to fashion week and watching all the shows in the backstage when it came to mum, and actually being a part of it getting dressed, having to do all the makeup, the practice runs, that was definitely a life-changing experience, and I will admit I was so nervous.

I was going to ask, were you scared?

Yes, I was so nervous, my legs man let me tell you I could barely stand, my legs were shaking, I just had to get it all together.

When you got on the runway was it tense? How did it feel?

I was really chill right before, but with the Dolce & Gabbana, their show their most recent one that I walked, they had me and six other people open the show and we came out from underneath the ground from like a spinning thing it’s hard to explain but it was so cool, but as I was standing there I was like oh my god it’s really about to happen and then that’s when I got nervous, but right when I started to take my first step to walk then it kind of all went away and everything sort of felt natural.

Describe Paris in one word?

Crazy.

And Milan?

Crazy too man, don’t take that the wrong way I love Paris and I love Milan.

If you could pick one which one was better?

Milan is a very beautiful place, it has a lot of beautiful sites you can go to and look at but I just feel like Paris is more my age, more of like my tempo, you got the youngens out here just chilling, fashion in Milan is great too but I love the fashion in Paris.

Follow Kailand on Instagram

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