Luka Sabbat teams up with Champion for their 100th anniversary and talks reinventing himself
'Grownish' breakout star Luka Sabbat is having a moment, and it doesn't look like it's ending anytime soon.
The 21-year-old model, actor and entrepreneur recognizes the many hats he wears may cause confusion, but he doesn't seem to mind. He describes himself as a creative, and specifies that he is not an influencer, but rather "a creative that happens to influence", stressing there's a real difference between the two.
Fittingly, he's deleted Instagram from his phone and candidly shares that he's in a period of reinventing himself, which he thinks is important to do often. "Don't ever let people catch on to who you are," he says, "because then they'll try to tell you who you are."
One thing Sabbat unequivocally is, though? A style icon.
His streetwear-meets-high-fashion vibe is enviable, and it's only fitting that his latest collaboration is with a classic brand that reinvents itself brilliantly - Champion.
Champion is partnering with Sabbat for its 100th anniversary, and appropriately, the launch of its centennial campaign is centered around the concept of teamwork. The global campaign's official theme - 'For the Team' - explores the power of the team through the creative lens.
The iconic brand is beginning a new chapter in this partnership with Sabbat and a youth organization called 'Art Start', which fosters young emerging talent. Sabbat not only loves Champion personally, but embodies the creative and collaborative spirit their centennial campaign represents. The items in Sabbat's Champion collaboration are not only designed by him, but feature his original artwork. We sat down with him to discuss his career, his style, his thoughts on teamwork, and what being a champion means to him.
On exciting things happening in his career:
"We live in a world of NDAs (laughs) but what I can say is I just wrapped season 3 of ‘Grownish’, which is probably the craziest season yet! I’ve got some more movies coming also, I’m really focusing on the acting stuff, and making furniture, and starting a new company. Can’t say the name yet, but we’re working on it."
On the profession he's most focused on right now:
"I’m focusing on the acting right now! Modeling got real boring. I like to be able to become someone, it’s 10 times more interesting and requires more work so that’s what I’m really identifying with right now. It’s working with new people, building these relationships, going on location, all of it. I really love it."
On the different kind of experiences he's had working with movies:
"I really like movie acting. Shows are fun because you work with the same people, and thank God my cast is cool (laughs) because I’ve worked with people who don’t like their cast mates and I don’t have that problem at all, but I like movies. You have to compact the story and fully deliver right there from beginning to end. On the producing side, [making Giants Being Lonely] with all your friends, and getting into one of the best film festivals in the world was definitely a milestone for all of us. It’s all of our first movies and it's a big moment, so now we’re excited to keep making movies and moving forward. That was just the beginning! "
On what shows he enjoyed the most this Fashion Month:
"Rick Owens, Celine, Balenciaga, those were three of my highlights right there. I wish Virgil [Abloh] was there. We were at Off-White and his presence was really missed. I was so used to seeing him coming out at the end, you know? It felt so weird not having him there."
On what style trends he's into right now:
"Right now I’m really into uniforms. I’ve been wearing the same thing for a minute ‘cuz the more I create, the less time I want to put into thinking about outfits, you know? So finding those signature pieces, like I have these beautiful black dress shoes that go with literally every outfit, black pants, black jacket, I have a really cool selection of t-shirts. Once you dial down those pieces, then style becomes real easy because I just wake up and put the sh** on!"
On whether or not he views himself as an influencer:
"Even though I was in essence one of the first influencers, it’s one of those things that got so watered down to a bunch of extras and people that wanted the influencing. There’s so many people I don’t want my name mentioned in the same sentence as - people that have way more followers than I do but it’s like, which demographic are they speaking to, you know? I’m so different because their job is being an influencer. I’m not an influencer, I’m a creative that happens to influence which is a big, big difference. I don’t want to be put in the same boat. I find it kind of offensive actually (laughs)."
On why he was excited to partner with Champion:
"It's just this iconic brand! I’ve been wearing it forever, from merch to customizing blanks to wearing the blanks. It’s just one of those timeless things. Champion's quality is always the same and its always top quality; it’s consistent. You know what you’re getting when you’re getting a Champion hoodie."
On reinventing himself:
"I'm trying to reinvent myself right now. I deleted the instagram app off my phone. I’m really taking a break to be able to refocus and I think people should always be reinventing themselves. Don’t ever let people catch on to who you are, because then they'll try to tell you who you are. You don’t want to normalize your identity. I’m always trying to reinvent myself!"
On what team spirit and teamwork means to him:
"Nothing, no company, no greatest of all time, no person is great on their own. It literally takes a team. From a company, to designing, to making things, to building things, it all requires people. Some people have perspectives you don’t have, so it’s all about finding people that you can work with and allocate things to, and being able to work smoothly together. That literally goes for everything."
On what being a champion means to him:
"Team work makes the dream work. Being a champion is subjective, and it’s all based on perspective but you have to consider yourself a champion in the sense of, are you happy? Are you fulfilled with what you’re doing? There’s people who could have all the accolades in the world and other people could consider them a champion, but they may not be happy with themselves. At the end of the day, being a champion is succeeding at being yourself and doing what you want to do more than trying to do everything for everyone else."
On mentoring youth from Art Start:
"Me and those kids were the same in the sense of, I was a teenager in NY also trying to make sh** happen, and they’re the same. Art Start is giving them the resources and the platform to do so. I’m trying to reciprocate that energy and help them wherever I can."
On his favorite champion go-to's:
"Champion reverse weave hoodie with the sweatpants. Every day, any day. Can’t fail."
Profit's from Luka's Champion collab will support Art Start, and the clothing items will be released in the New York Champion store on November 13th, and the Los Angeles store on November 14th. For more information on Champion's 'For the Team' campaign, visit https://champion100.com/.