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Swizz Beatz’s home is still fairly quiet when we arrive. That all changes about an hour later, when his two younger sons (one fresh from a soccer game, the other simply the embodiment of joie de vivre), arrive home. They’re followed by his older son, who observes his siblings’ shenanigans with a secretive half-grin and the occasional word of encouragement, especially when they engage their dad in a full-on wrestling match.

Patrick Mohr prepares for their arrival in sporting spectacles, oversized harem pants, and an expression of singular concentration. He spreads each potential outfit across two plush couches, and furrows his brow every now and then before changing the occasional pairing for something more favorable. One might think he were gearing up for the biggest shoot of his career, working with some of the world’s top models… if not for the fact we know he’s actually shooting his new SpongeBob SquarePants collection with some very dear friends.

Though the designer counts quite a few well-known musicians as part of his client list, Swizz Beatz is among Mohr’s closest friends. Their camaraderie is what makes the scene you’ll find below so genuine; a family-centered lookbook shoot that, in truth, was far more fun than work.

 

Swizz and Mohr first found common ground in their love of sneakers, and it was because of Mohr’s coveted footwear that they first met. What began with a collaboration with German streetwear brand K1X eventually caught Swizz’s eye, as Mohr’s sneakers officially reached “hype” status in the US thanks to their distinctive styling and premium materials. What followed was a deep creative partnership between the two.

Mohr, who was able to gain access to the beloved SpongeBob SquarePants universe from owners Viacom, went on to create the “Patrick Loves SpongeBob by PM” collection. The bright colors, acid-like vibrancy, and cartoonish exuberance of the assortment feels in stark contrast to his usual fare, and is perhaps not without a sense of irony…

Considering Mohr’s own personal style — which recalls the flowing monotone garbs of someone like ‎Damir Doma or Rick Owens in its love of sheer, spider silk-thin layers on top of more layers — this collection is quite a shift. This look, coupled with Mohr’s distinctive mustache and penchant for triangle body tattoos, seems the very opposite of Swizz Beatz’s own style. Yet, as the shoot progresses, it becomes clear that the pair actually couldn’t be more similar.

For one, they both share an appreciation for creativity in all its forms, and when they speak about their friendship, each inevitably mentions how forward-thinking the other is. One look at Swizz’s expansive art collection, which finds its way into several of Mohr’s lookbook shots, confirms this appreciation for all forms of artistic expression.

Among the impressive array of works hanging in the house sit pieces by the likes of Kehinde Wiley, Swoon and Retna, not to mention a towering solid wooden figure by KAWS. Standing here, surrounded by all this wold-class pop culture, you get the feeling there was no more perfect place to shoot this collection — just another example of why Patrick Mohr and Swizz Beats work so well together. 

Words by Stephanie Smith-Strickland
Contributor