Though relatively new to the game, Fear of God has quickly become one of the most coveted high-end streetwear brands.

Within only a couple of years, founder Jerry Lorenzo has solidified a signature aesthetic, which he calls “chic grunge,” that deftly blends rock ‘n’ roll and religious references into deceptively simple garments. The emphasis on layering and oversized silhouettes lends a contemporary vibe to late 20th century-inspired threads, which gained a co-sign from Kanye West, who hired the designer to be a part of his creative team last year.

Recently, Lorenzo sat down with Milk Made magazine to discuss the inception of Fear God, its unmistakable aesthetic, and the fusion of luxury and streetwear. Take a look below to read highlights from the Q&A, which can be read in its entirety here.

On Fear of God's inception:

"I never had a purpose for a brand; I would never do a brand just to have a cool perspective out on clothing. I wanted to do something that also left you with a greater purpose or inspired you some other way besides clothes. I was reading this devotion with my parents and we were talking about how clouds and darkness were around God’s kingdom, and it wasn’t in a way of him being a dark God, but just understanding the depths of his kingdom—there’s layers to him beyond our understanding. I wanted to do something to communicate this dark side in a cool way, and inspire people about what I felt was my truth. It was a combination of that dark message and me believing in myself and my aesthetic… then I started putting pieces together, and risking my savings and my family on trying to start this brand."

On whether he considers Fear of God streetwear or luxury:

I think it’s “street” in the way it came about. I didn’t go to fashion school, I don’t belong to a fashion house, I have no design background. It’s like a kid hustling mixtapes. You go downtown, you buy fabrics… you figure out the process. And so it’s street in the sense that that’s how it started, but it’s high end in the sense that I’m now using luxury fabrics, everything is made by the best sewers in LA, and everything is constructed to the highest-level quality. So you can look at it both ways, but I prefer not to fit in a box. I remember my first real retail job was working at Diesel and I wasn’t even cool enough to work on the floor; I was a stock boy. I’ll always remember that – it’s like I’m not supposed to be here. I didn’t really fit into the Diesel look at the time, and I don’t fit into whatever’s cool right now. I’ve just come to the realization that I’m the best at what I do. I’m not the best at fashion, I’m not the best at clothing – I’m the best at communicating my voice in the way that only I know how and that’s just what I stick to. Wherever that falls or however that’s categorized is up to people to decide.

[via Milk Made]