Stone Island’s brand history has been told and retold countless times over the past couple of years since the twin forces of Drake and Supreme propelled it to new heights of mainstream visibility. In case you’re one of the few people not in the loop, here’s a quick summary: back in the mid-1980s, English soccer (aka football) hooligans adopted the then-obscure Italian sailing label as a de facto uniform. They exported it back home where it would later be picked up by myriad other scenes, thus weaving it firmly into the fabric of British popular culture.
In the three decades since, the brand has expanded outwards far beyond the boundaries of its original core demographic. These days, you’re just as likely to see that famous compass patch pinned to the arm of a grime MC or well-off, middle-aged men who drive Range Rovers through the posher parts of London as you are on somebody who punches other people over petty sporting rivalries.
Despite this, most people (in Britain, at least) still associate Stoney with the “casuals” scene and this is, in fact, a major part of its appeal: scrawny suburbanites that spend their weekend afternoons on The Basement are drawn to the brand because some of that tough guy hooligan essence is captured in the clothing. Dudes who’ve never been in a fight in their lives buy Stone Island because it lets them simulate a hard man fantasy in their heads every time they catch a reflection of their left sleeve on a shiny surface. But as the brand has grown increasingly mainstream, its new admirers have started to repel its original devotees. The fact is, Drake and the streetwear scene have completely ruined Stone Island for the football thugs.
Read the rest of the article over at HighSnobiety