Since the news of their relationship, fans have wondered: How did Kanye West and Irina Shayk meet? Well, their love story started well before Kanye married or even started dating Kim.
Kanye and Irina met in 2010 when she starred in the music video for his song, “Power.” In 2012, she walked the runway in his 2012 Yeezy Paris Fashion Week show. According to a source for Us Weekly on Wednesday, June 16, Kanye was the one who contacted Irina first to reconnect. “Kanye was the first one to reach out,” the insider said. “The romance was similar to his [relationship] with Kim because he saw her on his video shoot in 2010 and thought she was gorgeous. He always thought she was special and she held a place in his mind.”
As for their relationship, Us Weekly’s source noted that Kanye and Irina are in the “honeymoon” phase of their romance, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t become serious later on. “Kanye and Irina are in a honeymoon, lovey-dovey phase right now,” the insider said. “They’re getting to know each other and having a lot of fun. It’s not serious yet, but they like each other a lot.”
News broke of Kanye and Irina’s relationship in June after they were photographed together in Provence, France. A source told TMZ at the time that the two were “100 percent romantically together.” A source also told HollywoodLife at the time that Irina—who split from boyfriend Bradley Cooper in 2019—was “thrilled” when Kanye asked her to travel to France together. Irina was thrilled when Kanye reached out to her asking her to hang out,” the source said. “She’s excited and she’s been ready to move on and find someone.”
The insider continued, “She doesn’t want to be known as just someone who’s associated [with] Bradley Cooper. This is a Hollywood merger of a new Hollywood power couple in her eyes, of Kanye and Irina, and it feels big to her for her career, but she also likes Kanye. She’s ready for this.”
Kanye and Irina’s relationship comes four months after Kanye’s ex-wife, Kim Kardashian, filed for divorce. In her court documents, which were filed in February, Kim cited “irreconcilable differences” as the reason for her and Kanye’s split. The former couple married in married in 2014 and share four children: North, 8, Saint, 5, Chicago, 3, and Psalm, 2. Irina, for her part, shares one child with Bradley: 4-year-old daughter Lea.
“[Kim is] genuinely happy for him and wants him to move on,” a source told Us Weekly in June. “She thinks Irina is a great fit for him.” A second source told the magazine that Kim knew of Kanye and Irina’s relationship before it went public. “She saw how quiet and respectful Irina was after she broke up with Bradley,” the insider said, adding how she “wouldn’t like” to see her kid’s dad move on with someone “who’s going to talk to the press.”
A source also told People in June that Kim supports Kanye and Irina‘s relationship as long as it doesn’t “distract” her estranged husband from their kids. “Her only concern is their kids. She wants Kanye to be present and spend as much time with them as possible. The kids love when Kanye is around,” the insider said. “Kim doesn’t want a new girlfriend to distract Kanye from spending time with the kids.”
An insider echoed the same sentiment to E! News. “Kim has heard the rumors about Kanye and Irina Shayk and she doesn’t mind at all,” the source said. “If it doesn’t impact her kids, then she doesn’t mind if Kanye dates.