Who’s That Boye

Who’s That Boye

Troye Sivan—pop-star, creative director, actor and now, HommeGirls' first HommeBoy.    

Volume 11
Volume 11

Photography Michael Bailey-Gates
Styling Stella Greenspan
Interview Alex Consani

Our first male cover star is none other than Troye Sivan. For Volume 11, he sits down with supermodel bestie Alex Consani to talk pheromones, family, and what it truly means to be “One Of Your Girls.”


On Troye: MISS CLAIRE SULLIVAN princess skirt; stylist’s own tank top; CALZEDONIA tights; MARC JACOBS runway shoes.

RICK OWENS Dirt Bolan leather pants.

Alex Consani: Yesss, let’s get this shit recorded…

Troye Sivan: Where are you?

AC: I’m in New York City in my new apartment. It’s really nice. You have to come see.

TS: Do you still live with the same cuties?

AC: No, I’m by myself now. She’s independent.

TS: I loved living alone. I only did it for a bit, but I loved it. I’m in Melbourne. Sorry, I look like trash. It’s morning.

AC: Congratulations on being the first HommeBoy! That’s so major.

TS: Thank you, thank you. The photos are mega. They look really cool. I’m excited for you to see. Have you ever shot with Michael before? Michael Bailey-Gates? Iconic, beautiful, amazing photographer. I wanted to shoot with him for so long, I don’t have the actual photos but…I actually posted it on my close friends a while ago but… [he flashes a BTS photo]. Look at this, like, coconut head. It was fun. Fun as fuck.

AC: Would you say it’s a more femme photo shoot? I feel like usually you’re... but, no, you do it all. You do it all.

TS: I honestly do it all. I’ve totally thrown away any sort of expectations as far as what feels right. I’ve always understood that for other people, you know, wear whatever you want, do whatever you want, whatever feels right to you is cool. But I think I really gave myself that permission after the “One Of Your Girls” video. I was just like, oh, wait, this feels so good to me in a different way, just genuine. I enjoy playing and I’m having so much fun with it. I’m also super vocal when something doesn’t feel right. There’s plenty of times where I’ll put on a dress or something for a shoot and I’m like, nah, this doesn’t feel right. And then same thing for some like, Bro-cosplay outfit. I’ve given myself permission to do literally whatever I want. And it’s fun.

AC: I wanted to ask, do you have a moment, inside or outside of your career that you want to share where you felt the most euphoric about your own personal identity?

TS: It’s kind of ironic, I was thinking about that when we were shooting the cover. They were like, Okay, you’re the first man on the cover.” I also won GQ Man of the Year in Australia. And I’m just like LOL…like…this year I did drag for the first time too. I think my idea of what it means to be me has expanded so much, what it means for me to be a man has expanded so much. I recognize the irony in it. That’s something I’m really proud of though, I want to lead by example. Like I said, it’s the same thing when you grant other people the grace of loving their body or knowing they’re beautiful, we provide more patience to others than we do sometimes for ourselves. I am proud of myself this year for being more patient with myself and allowing myself to just be me. It’s sort of funny to me that the accolades have followed.

DURAN LANTINK boll shirt and denim bubble jeans; MANOLO BLAHNIK vintage pumps courtesy of Albright Fashion Library.

“I’ve given myself permission to do literally whatever I want. And it’s fun.”

AC: Yeah, totally. I can speak to the fact that it’s difficult sometimes to truly express yourself on social media, but I feel like that’s something you’ve always done. And… I mean, I’ve always done that. Where did you get the inspiration behind feeling content with yourself? Was that just something you’ve always felt?

TS: From what we’ve spoken a lot about, I think we both come from really supportive families. And to me, that’s everything. It’s made me feel bulletproof. Because my family is the thing that I care most about in the world, it’s like, if they’re cool with me, I really, genuinely, don’t need much else. I’ve got my friends; I’ve got my family. It’s such a luxury and such a privilege and has allowed me to go into the world with this, almost recklessness. If I lose it all, or if people fucking hate me for dressing like a girl or kissing a boy in a music video or whatever, I’m like, I don’t care at all. It was my suit of armor when I was young.

AC: Having that foundation of support allows you to truly thrive and feel confident, you know? Wait, so has your family seen the cover yet?

TS: No, but actually, my parents were on set. Have your parents come to fashion weeks and stuff?

AC: They haven’t. It’s difficult because they’re all the way back on the West Coast — not much fashion week around there. I just send things to my family. It’s just nice to like, remind yourself where the beginnings came from. Especially when you have a special moment to celebrate.

TS: Did either of your parent’s model?

AC: Uh uh. They should’ve thought, you know.

TS: I can imagine. Do they get it? Are they like gagged when they see you walk?

AC: I don’t know if you follow my mom on Instagram. But girl, she’s crazy. When I tell you, the things that she posts... I love her so much. She’s the first one to post a runway or a shoot that I do. I’m pretty sure she has like Google notifications on for my name.

TS: Are they clued in, like do you have to educate them on like, “No, this is a really big deal that I’m working for this brand or like that I’m shooting with this photographer.”

AC: They know as much as the internet can tell them. I feel like my parents are also not too generationally different from me so they can understand my industry. I mean, do you feel the same way?

TS: I had to explain to my dad. Like, the Grammys, I was like, Dad, this is as big as it gets, this is the coolest thing that can possibly happen, this is what I wanted my whole life. He’s obviously heard of the Grammys, but he’ll then confuse it with some other awards show. He’s not super aware. I kind of have to give them context. But I also do like that, I think it keeps me grounded as well. They know when something’s a big deal to me. Do your parents get TikTok?

AC: I mean, now they do, for sure. My mom’s crazy about TikTok now, she can’t get off. She told me a whole rundown about that like 50-part series, “Who’s the man I married” or whatever. Do you have a lot of opportunities to bring your parents with you?

TS: Yeah, if I’m going to the Prada show or something the team will take such good care of me that I’ll use my plus one on my mom or my brother or something. And they fly them out and stuff. It makes it way more fun. I feel like we get to do so much cool stuff that our dopamine receptor or serotonin or whatever it is, can get really like, fucked and fried. I think bringing someone who’s not from that world or not used to it can help remind you like, no, this is like crazytown.

AC: You’ve done a lot of other covers before, what cover is this for you? Do you know?

TS: Oh my god, I actually don’t. I don’t know.

AC: Girl. We gotta look this up.

TS: That’s crazy. I’ve never thought to do that. How many have you done?

AC: Maybe like four or five. I had my first one pretty recently. Do you remember when you did your first big shoot?

TS: I think my first cover was this art magazine in Australia. They used to do some really gaggy stuff.

AC: Is this YouTuber era? What era was this?

PRADA single-breasted cotton jacket and wool shorts.

“I won GQ Man of the Year in Australia.
And I’m just like LOL…like…this year I did
drag for the first time too.”

PRADA wool shorts and denim jacket & shirt.

TS: I had just signed my record deal and this was my first cover. They did some spooky stuff.

AC: I feel like an experimental moment is always fun… [Troye drops a Pinterest link in the zoom chat] Oh, not the Pinterest link. Oh my god… werk.

TS: I think starting with an art magazine as my first cover really set the tone of like, when I’m on a shoot, that’s the ultimate time to play and explore. It’s also fun because I feel like I have a bit of a say in what the creative is.

AC: Sometimes I’ll get into like a character and listen to music and get into a vibe... did that happen on the shoot?

TS: Oh, they played “Jump” by Madonna, I immediately added it to my playlist.

AC: On shoots they always love ’80s music. I don’t know what that is.

TS: For me, they always play SZA.

AC: Always SZA, it’s always like, [she starts to sing ’80s style music gibberish].

TS: Anti, the Rihanna Album. They rinsed that on shoots for a long time…

HommeGirls: Wait. How did you guys become friends?

AC: Social media? No, no, no, no. It was Cannes.

TS: We met at the amfAR gala. But I’d already been a big fan. I remember we bonded over how shitty the European vapes were. Remember our vapes were dying, and we were stressed. There were those last dusty puffs, you know, like two dusty puffs left.

AC: And then you came to New York and literally stayed down the street from me.

TS: I don’t know if it’s a queer thing, but I feel an instant comfort a lot of the time when I meet queer people. I don’t know, there’s a baseline of understanding or maybe humor, I don’t know what it is that brings people together. But I just felt instantly like, thank God, Alex is here.

AC: I mean we had the blessing of having supportive parents and were able to, from a younger age, express ourselves the way we wanted to. That in itself is something that really allows people to see each other for who they are. I moved to New York because of that. I remember I came to New York for like a week to tour schools. And I saw these two older trans women sitting on the subway and missed both of their stops to have a conversation about how it was growing up being trans in the ’80s. I’d never seen that in my life. I’m from San Francisco, and it’s very queer, but not to that extent, where just on a random day, you can see two women bonding over their experience of queerness. And that was so important to me. And I moved here for that. Like, I’d landed today from Paris. And on the Uber ride back, I saw someone with the trans flag on her split dye hair. I was like, I’m home. What was your favorite look from the shoot?

TS: My favorite look…this little puffy top…

AC: Is it Duran?

TS: It’s like a little bubbly top and a little bubbly short shorts… Yeah… it’s Duran.

AC: Look at me knowing my fashion history.

TS: When you’re in that environment, good people having a good time, all like amazing at their jobs, it’s so great. I feel like in the early days a shoot was always a gamble because you don’t know the team and are taking a risk. Of course, it still can be. But now I feel so lucky to work with the most insane teams, like there are things that I did on this shoot because it’s Michael shooting it, that I would never feel comfortable doing with somebody else. Knowing and trusting Michael’s work and his eye. Honestly, I showed up and was like, do literally whatever you want. I’m so down. Everyone just kind of excelling and playing and bringing the best out in each other. That is like, addictive to me, and that’s what I strive for in everything that I do. I fucking love collaboration and working with good people. Oh my god. Fun fact for the reader. Alex was supposed to be in the “Rush” video.

AC: I was supposed to be in the video… It was logistics, babe.

TS: That was right before we met. I got the first cut of the “Rush” video probably like the day after I met you. It was like the stars aligned. We were meant to meet around that time. But God you would have killed that.

MK: What was the first piece you ever designed for Label, and what was the first piece you sold?

LW: I was always making costumes and clothes for myself to wear to clubs as a stylist, however the first items conceived for Label dealt with the codes of fashion and addressing patriarchal narratives. I was commissioned by Blitz magazine to do a feature on gangs in East Los Angeles as I grew up there, and was familiar with the culture. I wanted to address the tradition of an old English font for nicknames [printed] on what was called a ‘wife beater’ tank tops. I turned these into dresses commenting on a transition of the normalized oppression of women, using the tank top to hijack the idea through uniform. These dresses also sent a message that women now had agency over this narrative. These were only worn by friends who were sensitive to that culture and were focused on making a statement about objectification. Of course, the first dresses I officially sold were the Adidas dresses at Union, a store helmed by James Jebbiaand Mary Ann Fusco, X-Large, Funkessentials and Pat Field.

MK: What did your early days as a brand look like in the city?

LW: I had a live-work studio on 29th Street near the garment district on 8th Avenue. The store opened in 1995. It was originally in a large building on lower Lafayette. Eli Gesner from Zoo York wanted to have a skate ramp in the basement. I moved a few months later to 265 Lafayette which was the headquarters for the next 14 years. What unified everyone in the early streetwear scene was to disempower the hold that big brands had. As I said earlier, I grew up in Los Angeles and lived in Lausanne because I wanted to study international relations when I was 14, and then I came to London by the time I was 15, 16. A really important person there that helped start the concept of appropriation was Barnzley Armitage, who was a friend of Vivienne Westwood’s son, Joe Corré. He did this Chanel T-shirt — with an artist called Wigan and my god, it was like ’85, ’86 — and it was unheard of to see a Chanel logo on a T-shirt. I think I grew from those defifiant denominators; this British sartorial approach really carved a lot of my sensibilities.

MK: What’s so crazy is that the Chanel logo was revolutionary on a T-shirt back then because the powers that be would thumb their noses at it, but by the end of the ’90s they had re-tooled to manufacture their own logo tees. What did it feel like to go from your DIY appropriation of these logos to essentially getting carte blanche from brands like Playboy to create licensed merchandise?

LW: I was working with Cheryl Dunn on the “Breaking the Girl” music video for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and told her about what I was doing [with Label] and she organized a photoshoot with Spin magazine. At this time, I wasn’t just doing the Adidas dress, I did Puma dresses; I turned the Champion hoodie into a dress; I took the Everlast short and turned it into a boxing ball gown. Bob Guccione, the editor of Spin approved it, then I wrote to every sportswear brand to get permission, and they all said yes because Spin was a really important youth culture magazine at the time. I was friends with someone working with Madonna, and she ended up wearing an Adidas dress to a Knicks game. I thought, Oh boy, am I in trouble. I was in New York, and I remember very nervously calling Adidas on a payphone — I was immediately passed up to the CEO, and they just said ‘Whatever you want to do, you can do it.’ I did have legal representation from Skadden Arps, a very prestigious firm who represented me pro bono because they were interested in helping young women’s businesses. We were also represented by In The Mix, a PR company that had Alexander McQueen at the time. Wanting to continue this sartorial feminist approach: I thought of Playboy, [In The Mix] went to Playboy, and we got a Bryant Park show and licensing to use the logo. It was all very surreal, but at the same time, I was trying to deconstruct it all, to disempower the holds that these big brands had by allowing avenues to question their motives in a positive way. The world wasn’t ready for that moment, I think.

MK: I have to ask…X-Girl has come back with a capsule collection: is there anything in the works for a Label NYC revival?

LW: Currently there’s a gallery here in Los Angeles doing a retrospective with all the Label NYC pieces. Some of the dresses are even for sale because we’re trying to position them in collections that will offer conservation. But yeah, I feel I will always express myself through the language of the uniform costume of clothing. It’s something I’ve done since I was a child, it’s so wired into my identity, as well as the way I communicate with the world. It’s my own means of therapy to return to that language and there’s been a lot of enthusiasm to see some pieces reimagined; so I would say: likely soon. I would also like to work towards more equity in the industry and more protection for creatives. We are all part of an ecosystem and predatory capitalism has the capacity to destroy art’s inceptive voice. I would like to see the bigger brands work towards a more sustainable system which rewards creativity and acknowledges the visionaries that put these new ideas into being.

WILLY CHAVARRIA Long Haul leather jacket; stylist’s own vintage sunglasses; MAC COSMETICS M·A·Cximal silky matte lipsticks in Russian Red and Ruby Woo.

“I feel like we get to do so much cool
stuff that our dopamine receptor or serotonin
or whatever it is, can get really like,
fucked and fried.”

HOMMEGIRLS boxer shorts; CALZEDONIA stay-ups; AGENT PROVOCATEUR garter belt; MANOLO BLAHNIK vintage pumps courtesy of Albright Fashion Library.

MISS CLAIRE SULLIVAN custom corset trousers.

AC: There’s more to come, baby. I know it.

HG: Tell us about Tsu Lange Yor.

TS: So, I founded a lifestyle brand with my brother. We make candles, perfumes, and homewares. I have one of our little candles burning right now. I love interior design so much. There’s a designer I really love in Melbourne and we worked on my house together. It ended up getting posted on the internet. I just did not expect other people to like it as much as I liked it. Once they did, I realized, well, if you guys are as obsessed with this as I am, plenty more where that came from. As the creative director, it just pushes me. I’ve gotten used to creative directing my own project, so then for me to be able to step out of myself and explore other worlds aesthetically, or work with different people. I get to highlight Australian talent. All our products are made in Australia and that’s really important to me. The candle that I’m burning right now has this ingredient called Tasmanian Mountain Pepper. It’s never been used in a fragrance before. It’s beautiful. My favorite thing about scent is how emotional it is — it’s so nostalgic, it’s so closely linked to memory. Now I really associate this smell with my home. I love the idea of going to America and having a consistent smell that for me is home. I used to travel with candles when I was on tour because I’d be so homesick and just wanted some consistency. It’s about slowing down and taking that little extra second in your day to just be present. This is a dumb example, but I bought this little old spoon and I use it for my sugar. And every morning I think about that spoon and how pretty it is and where I got that spoon. It might feel indulgent to buy yourself a candle or to buy yourself something nice for your space, but I think it’s important to treat yourself and take those moments to slow down.

AC: I mean it aesthetically adds to the space regardless. Were you a pheromone girl? I feel like you definitely were…

TS: Wait, aren’t pheromones your natural scent?

AC: Yeah, but they sell them.

TS: Like fragrances that enhance your pheromones?

AC: It’s crazy. Real musky. My old roommate, the one that you met, he was into the pheromones. I personally love it, but it’s definitely a scent that you don’t really notice until you’re like why does it smell a bit armpitty boots? But in a good way. Recently I’ve been getting into patchouli.

TS: I love patchouli. Speaking of armpitty, sometimes a little cumin or coriander can give that vibe. And I love it.

AC: It makes you feel at home.

TS: Totally, the mones. The pheromones.

AC: The armpit pheromones honey makes you feel safe. What home goods have you done?

TS: Our hero product is an oil burner. Wait… [he grabs one from his bathroom] I’m giving like candle salesmen right now.

AC: Personally, I’m sold.

TS: It’s this little statue, and then you put the candle here. And then you drop oil in the top. And the candle warms it. And it diffuses the scent, but it looks like a little cute statue that you would have next to your bed anyway. It kinda looks like a tooth. She’s cute.

AC: I love it. Are you thinking of expanding?

TS: Definitely. It feels almost like my full-time job, balancing music and this is difficult. Because it requires so much and I love it so much. And I want to give it so much. I’m trying to go full Fenty with it and make it my job.

AC: Going back to family, it’s nice that you’re doing that with your brother, I can imagine that makes it so much easier.

TS: I got sort of proposed to do this exact idea with like these big companies — you basically just slap your name on to a product at the end once the products are already made. And respect to the people who do that, I get it because everyone’s busy but that just takes out all the fun for me. We started this literally just out of my house, just the two of us. I’m really proud of what we’ve grown so far.

AC: I’m ready to see this damn cover in the print honey, we gotta go to Icon Magazines when you’re out here.

TS: Yeah, I’m coming to New York.

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN jacket and pants; MANOLO BLAHNIK vintage pumps courtesy of Albright Fashion Library.

PUPPETS AND PUPPETS faux fur jacket; RAIMUNDO LANGLOIS faded bootcut jeans; LOS ANGELES APPAREL thong.

Makeup Kennedy
Hair Rob Talty
Set Design Ava Villafañe
Casting Greg Krelenstein
Production AP Studio

May 2024