Shawn Joswick is a New York City native and denim aficionado with a studio in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. We caught up to talk background, influences and what makes up his individual style.
BR: Hey Shawn. Tell us who you are.
SJ: I’m Shawn Joswick. I live in New York City and run a studio where I spend my time working mostly with denim. Making and repairing specialist pieces, reworking stuff. That kind of thing.
BR: How did you come to that?
SJ: If we go way back when I first came to New York I lived across the street from a designer. He was painting his store one day and I just went over to ask if he needed some help. We got talking and I told him about my seamstress grandmother and how she taught me to sew so he asked me to work for him. I started doing that and simultaneously I got a job as a fit model at a jeans company. That was when denim got heavy on my radar and when I made my first pair of jeans. From there it just evolved. I fell in love with tailoring and making clothes and it became the one thing that rivalled my passion for skateboarding.
BR: What is it about denim?
SJ: I love working with it. I think it’s because it’s universal. It transcends class, race, gender. Everyone wears jeans.
BR: How would you describe your own style?
SJ: It’s basic. I know what I like.
BR: What do you like?
SJ: I think style is more personal than anything else. I like the idea that you take clothing and wear it your way, you make it your own. You could give a white t-shirt and jeans to 20 people and it’s going to look different on each person.
I mostly gravitate towards the shape of things though.
BR: What inspires you outside your work?
SJ: As a young kid growing up on the East Coast my life revolved around the culture of the West Coast. Skateboarding, BMX - all these things that were only accessible through magazines and videos. Even at a young age I had a different sensibility, had my brain trained on different stuff. That still holds.
Inspiration comes from so many different things. Being on the street, being around people who are doing stuff and creating things. I’ve always been influenced by that especially.
When it comes to music I love a broad range of stuff. Oasis, The Stone Roses, The Jesus and Mary Chain. 90’s hip hop. It’s all across the board.
The Stone Roses, ‘I Wanna Be Adored (original recording)’
The Jesus and Mary Chain, ‘Amputation’
BR: What does Basic Rights mean to you?
SJ: The name says it. Basic Rights are those staples you need. The pieces you should have. You know, everyone should have a great pair of tailored trousers, everyone should have sturdy plain t-shirts, they should have an awesome button down shirt. You know what I’m saying?
Just like denim this stuff transcends.
BR: What pieces from the collection did you like the best?
SJ: The High Waisted trousers. Nailed it. The details in the design, the proportions that look right, it all makes such a huge difference. I pay so much attention to that stuff.
Shawn wears pieces from Basic Rights Core and Limited collections.