Put yourself in Nicholas Schwerdtfeger’s shoes
Words: Dylan Muhlenberg | Pics: Mr Skodilla
Mr Skodilla is an enigma shrouded in mystery and shod in nice shoes. I first met Nicholas Schwerdtfeger after he’d commandeered two parking bays at the beach with his stickered up monster truck, and then a year later was surprised to bump into him while he was cruising around town in a Kermit green Porsche. Both times one thing remained consistent – interesting facial hair and dope kicks.
He might look like a mullet, and act like one, too, but guy’s actually a very clever boy, working offshore in the oil and gas industry as some sort of multidiscipline engineer where he delivers specialized services within the Norwegian Sector of the North Sea.
Suffice it to say that when he puts his feet up he likes to enjoy the view. Which is why we spoke to the 28-year old sneakerhead about his covetous collection of kicks.
What does Skodilla even mean?
It’s a made up word in Norwegian. ‘Sko’ means shoe and ‘dilla’ is slang for addicted or dependent. A girlfriend of mine started calling me that after she saw the room one day and it stuck.
How many pairs of sneakers do you own?
At the moment +- 300. It fluctuates a bit, but generally upwards. Buy seven new pairs, sell three old ones... Lately I have chilled out on splurging on shoes. I collect property and other things now that cost a bit more than a few pairs of Roshe's.
Why do you have so many shoes?
I love sneakers, theres not many items of clothing that can explain who you are in so few words as a nice pair of kicks. Some of them are good investments. Some of them are just mad sick and have to be worn. I guess its like a disorder, but a useful one. Have I answered the question? I have 300 pairs of kicks because firstly, I can. I have 300 pairs of kicks because I love colours, tones, textures, well executed design and the exclusivity factor of having 300 pairs of kicks no one else has.
When did you start collecting and who or what inspired it?
I started collecting about 6 years ago. Not as seriously back then, but I always had a decent stockade of DVS, Globes, DC's, Vans, Etnies and Es's to skate in. I have to say it all started with skating and skate shoes, the massive Osiris D3's, DVS Munitions and Globe Scribes. The ones that were as big as a small mammal and like sleeping bags for your feet. I still have some of those. I dont wear mad puffy shoes that often anymore. Only when I listen to the Offspring.
Tell us about that 'Red Room of Sneakers' you have.
Its green. Or chartreuse if you wanna be a dick about it. So yeah, I bought a dope loft apartment and I had a large spare room next to the bed room. I thought about building a climbing wall, putting in a jacuzzi, but eventually I just had so many boxes lying round everywhere and so many sneakers stacked up that I decided to go all in and build a walk in sneaker closet. I pride myself on my collection and want to display it in a cool way, so I put astroturf all over the floor, repainted the walls, got my madam to make and apply some sick stencils of my favourite brands on the wall, and got a friend to install some dope LED's and spots in the roof. Theres also some dope memorabilia and sneaker related stuff in there. Like "friends and family" stuff I have been gifted from various retailers and brands.
You seem to prefer the garishly coloured high tops. Do you f**k with Stan Smith?
Not exactly Stan Smith, I’m not really feeling the new adidas retro's. Some of them, sure, but there is a lot of stuff that is a bit higher on my list. But adidas have been making moves lately and they're dropping alot of new models lately. I am however starting to cut down on the "garishly coloured high tops" (Why you got bring race into it brah?) Hahaha. Its called swag bitch. They're cool, but require a bit more thought with regard to what the rest of your wardrobe is doing so as not to look like a clown. Been getting more and more runners and low tops lately. Huaraches, NB 1500's, SB Lows etc...
Tell us about your Grails.
Thats a tough one. I have some kicks I paid a lot for, that fiscally mean a lot, but I hardly wear them, or some of them are still on ice. And I have some that I have just used a long time to track down in the right colourway, size, condition and those generally mean more. But recently I was in Hamburg to surprise visit my pops and we cruised around for a day doing some sight seeing that included a stop in the Nike concept store. I tried on a pair of Jordan 7 Bordeaux's that had just dropped the day before and he ended up buying them for me. I think right now those mean more to me just because they were a gift from my dad who is my hero. Also, he has no idea how many kicks I actually have and if he found out he would probably check me in for psych. treatment. And I think its the first pair of kicks I have recieved from a family member since I moved to Norway. Otherwise Im basically going back in time when it comes to things I want. Alot of the goodies aren't getting retro'd so you just have to spend time tracking them down. Which is good, it seperates the f**kboys from the real sneakerheads.
You actually wear your shoes, but is there anything you've put on ice as an investment?
#wearyourkicks!!! You have to wear 'em. If you dont wear your shoes, you're not a collector, you just have a hoarding disorder. Having said that, There are some kicks I just couldn't bring myself to wear given their current resale value. It’s like throwing 30-40k away per pair. I mean, I like to live and all that, and I ball, but like f**k. Thats a lot of gwop.
You travel a lot, what pair do you always pack?
At the moment my "travel" shoes are either a pair of Huaraches or a pair of Flyknit Chukka's. Pure comfort. Usually in the bag there is a pair of Nike SB Lows or Highs, depending on where I'm headed or a pair of Supra Skytop iii's.
Best place to buy sneakers?
Events. Hands down. Thats where the vibe is. You can trade, negotiate, choose from 1000's of different kicks. Does it get any better? I've been hitting Sneakerness and Sneaker Banquet throughout Europe whenever I can, and its the business. Shout out to those respective crew's for doing their thing and giving us the chance to connect! Its really a family vibe after going to a couple of them. But if I had to choose one store, Titolo in Zurich.
Worst sneaker crimes being committed right now?
Rapist resellers. Not wearing your kicks. Bots. Violence at campouts. Online bitchery. They just shoes, yo.
Whose the best sneaker designer after Yeezus?
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. I will stab you Muhlenberg. The f**k outta here! Hypebeast f**kboy swag. Tinker Hatfield (google him) just for, well, where do I start? The dudes at Supra, most underrated brand on the market. CNCPTS have been churning out some flames the last few years.
What do you like to wear your sneakers with? Do you pay attention to the rest of your outfit as much?
Not really, I wear jeans, t-shirts and hoodies. Basically I dont f**k with fashion. I do f**k models though.
Top 10 shoes you should own as a sneakerhead.
1 - A shoe without laces. I go for Puma Disc's because they comfy as. Or you can just go Eminem and rip the laces out your Air Force's.
2 - A shoe with a gum sole. A proper classic. I'm a big fan of a monotone shoe with gum soles.
3 - A shoe made of something different. One word: Foamposite.
4 - A shoe you had during your childhood. Go track it down. Even if you dont wear it, it will be a good time to find it. But do try wear that.
5 - A pair of OG's. The firsts. The Jordan resale market will make you sad. Unless this is what your heart desires, find something else.
6 - A pair of shoes that are iconic, Chuck's, Air Force One, Blazer's, They go with anything and chances are you will end up buying multiple pairs.
7 - A pair of shoes your favourite rapper wears.
8 - A pair of shoes that have some glow in the dark bit(s) on them.
9 - A pair of shoes from the 90's. I grew up in the 90's and still live there mostly.
10 - A pair of shoes that I don't have, that way I'll ask you where you got them and we can chat shit.
Be sure to keep up with Mr Skodilla on Instagram.