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Snoop Dogg takes on his new role as an artist

‘Suited and booted, dipped and whipped’

Want to know how the Doggfather keeps his style so fresh? We get the low-down on the rapper’s love-letter to Swedish brand Happy Socks

Without question, he does whatever he wants. All day. Everyday. One moment he might be selling a Versace-inspired painting for $10k, the next he might be coaching kids at his Snoop Youth Football League. He may be stirring up some Gram beef just for a laugh, possibly while getting a French manicure. Or he could be speaking as part of the nationwide campaign he’s leading called “No Guns Allowed.” He might be laying down a reggae verse (as Snoop Lion) for Eddie Murphy, or filming a Jean-Roch music video that stars Karl Lagerfeld as God, or joining Jason Derulo to ask “Can you wiggle, wiggle for the D, O double G again?”

There’s no telling what he might do or say next. But it never feels try-hard or fabricated; there’s a sense of Snoop realness in all of the projects and collaborations he juggles. His Instagram feed is an unfiltered play-by-play of his non-stop world, a continual stream of jokes and exclamation points, with memes and blunts aplenty. And socks. “I’m big into being spooned and groomed head to toe,” Snoop tells. “A mean sock game is important.”

After giving Swedish brand Happy Socks quite a bit of IG love, he saw a bigger picture. “I started rocking them, and my people connected with their people,” he says. “I like the designs, there’s a lot of different ones. 

His forthcoming collab with Happy Socks – “The Art of Inspiration” – sees him follow the likes of David LaChapelle and Terry Richardson to create a special campaign that becomes an art project in itself: a short film, a painting project and a chance for feet around the world to up their sock game with Snoop’s custom designs. We stopped for a rapid-fire chat with the Doggfather to pick his brain about socks, painting, evolution and collaboration.

What makes you interested in working with someone - what sparks your interest in a brand or artist?

Snoop Dogg: I like to work with creative people who do their own thing. People with their own vibe. People who are individuals and leaders, not followers. I look for cold artists who are good people.

“My style is laid back and comfortable but fly at the same time. Fly at all times. You gotta stay suited and booted, dipped and whipped!” – Snoop Dogg

What is it about socks that you love?

Snoop Dogg: I like to switch it up. I might have on something simple like a white tee, but I still have some of that fly shit on my feet.

How would you describe your personal style?

Snoop Dogg: My style is laid back and comfortable but fly at the same time. Fly at all times. You gotta stay suited and booted, dipped and whipped! Take care of yourself and your appearance.

Who are some of your favorite fashion designers?

Snoop Dogg: Givenchy, Versace and Louis [Vuitton].

Besides dope socks, what else is essential in your wardrobe?

Snoop Dogg: 501s, Khaki suits and Adidas.

What’s your favorite pair of Happy Socks?

Snoop Dogg: My own! I like them the best cause I got to design whatever I wanted when I made them. 

Speaking of Happy, what can you tell us about your forthcoming album with Pharrell?

Snoop Dogg: It’s going to be a monster! Pharrell is killing it as always.

How do you stay inspired?

Snoop Dogg: I stay inspired in all kinds of ways. My family and my homies inspire me. New music too. I might be walking down the street and get inspired by something I see. It all starts with an idea. 

How did the idea of painting come about?

Snoop Dogg: I started painting in January 2014. I was on the road and wanted something to do in my spare time.

How would you describe your art?

Snoop Dogg: I paint a lot of abstract stuff. I paint how I feel. I’m inspired by the times, what I’m seeing, who I’m listening to and what I’m smoking. I paint how I feel and I do the same thing in my music. It’s just a different way to get my thoughts out. 

There’ve been a lot of themes of happiness, peace and love in your most recent projects, with Snoop Lion especially.

Snoop Dogg: You gotta evolve, man. It’s very important for me to keep evolving as an artist. When you stop evolving you get stale. I grew as a man and a father and I wanted to let people know how I feel.

What’s most important for you to leave behind, as a legacy?

Snoop Dogg: Great music and being a great father to my children.