Lula speaks
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Are you a REBEL8er, too? An interview with Model, Restaurateur and REBEL8er – Neill Wan

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REBEL8 is an innovative streetwear brand  with street-fashion heritage that ignites passion from streetwear lovers and style-conscious trendsetters.

REBEL8 has a huge fan base anchored in music, sports, tattoo and art, and its designs are heavily inspired by classic skateboard graphics, vintage tattoo art and graffiti. 

With hundreds of accounts around the world, REBEL8 combines comfort and quality with an anti-authority punk DIY attitude. Its Tees, fleece and outwear represents a growing group of like-minded individuals. REBEL8’s core purpose is to showcase its trademark attitude through unique products.

Here, Lula 101 interviews a huge REBEL8er (the name for fans of REBEL8), Neill Wan, a popular model in Taiwan. We know how REBEL8 relates to its fans, although we don’t know as much about world of modeling. So let’s start with some R8 questions.

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1. How has REBEL8 made an impression on you you? Design? Attitude? Quality?

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“It was a coincidence how I fell in love with REBEL8. My first REBEL8 experience was when I wore a hoodie shirt while I was out fixing my bicycle. The shirt was incredibly comfortable and affordable, too. The more I wore it, the more I noticed other R8 street style designs that I really liked. Then I went crazy with the brand, collecting tons of T-shirts, hoodies with tattoo and skateboard elements.  REBEL8 represents who I am; its designs are different from other streetwear labels, not just the logo, but the story behind the brand.”

2. How else has REBEL8 and streetwear culture had an influence in your life?

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“Streetwear culture has made a great impression on me since childhood. I read many magazines about streetwear. What I think about streetwear culture that it’s cool to just be yourself.”

3. What’s the fun part of being a model, and how did you start in that field?

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“ At 17, a model agency director bought coffee at 7-11, where I worked, and asked if I wanted to be in a commercial. Of course I said yes.  And the people I’ve met through modeling, from photographers, make-up team, manufacturers and other models, have become good friends and made my life better.”

4. We heard that you recently visited New York City. What are your favorite spots there, and when you were taking pictures, what captured your attention?

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“I was in NYC to help celebrate my buddy Tyler’s mom’s 60th birthday as well as to visit different American-style pizza restaurants so I could give my second restaurant in Taiwan a fresh look and even better food. I love the similarities between NYC and Taipei, and my place in NYC’s west village reminded me of a Taipei community in many ways.  So many things in Manhattan and Brooklyn fascinate me. People are so chill, dress very stylish and seem to be comfortable in their own skin. I felt at home there, and I can’t say enough good things about NYC. It is truly a place for everyone.

5. Tell us your favorite styles and what your clothes say about you?

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“ I have different styles, depending on where I am and what I’m doing. What I wear nowadays are mostly T-shirts and tanks, jeans and shorts – anything that’s simple, stylish and cool. I like whites, blacks and greys with unique details that pop out, life is far more interesting like that.”

6. What inspired you to open your own New York-style pizza restaurant, Little New York, in Taipei? 

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“My best buddy, Tyler Rosso inspired when he started LNY with a French man. Then, because I had work experience in an Italian restaurant and lots in common with Tyler, my adventurous pizza experience began from there.”

7. What makes LNY stand out from other restaurants?

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“ LNY is a traditional handmade American-style pizza restaurant, and every detail from baking, tasting, and styling are all U.S. influenced. The decor and in-store music we use are very different from other Taipei restaurants, with a cool and unique vibe.”

Sounds great. Thanks for talking with us, and thanks for being a passionate REBEL8er!

Want more REBEL8er updates? Follow our REBEL8er @neillwanwan