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Brand Focus: Stone Island

Wed 17 Jan 24
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With its distinctive compass logo symbolizing a commitment to innovation and top-tier outerwear, the mention of Stone Island sends a ripple of pride or envy through the hearts of fashion enthusiasts worldwide.

But do you know about its rocky past, or that it recently joined forces with another Italian powerhouse? We're here to answer FAQs about Stone Island and let you in on the best places to shop the merch.

 

Who Owns Stone Island?

As of 2020, Moncler acquired a majority stake in Stone Island for €1.15 billion. Founded by Massimo Osti in 1982, the brand changed hands before, landing in the hands of Gruppo Finanziario Tessile in 1993.

Osti shifted focus to his other baby, the great C.P. Company while Carlo Rivetti took charge at Stone Island, diligently upholding the founder’s creative vision. 

A new luxury conglomerate has now emerged harmonised by Stone Island and Moncler’s shared Italian pride, expertise in technical outerwear and love for material experimentation.

Rivetti assures fans that Stone Island will retain its authenticity, benefiting from positive enhancements through collaboration, idea sharing, and knowledge exchange. Both brands experienced strong double-digit growth in 2023, so I can only assume that everything is going according to plan.

 

Who Wears Stone Island?

The compass rose has captured the hearts of many, starting with the Italian Paninari in 1980s Milan. These style-obsessed youth were named for the sandwich-loaded cafés they liked to hang out at.

Influenced by American advertisements and TV, they liked to emulate the fashion culture, sporting rolled-up jeans, Converse, and T-shirts, mixed in with their love for designer brands like Moncler and Stone Island.

Next came the bad boy phase when groups of English football fans picked up on the brand while visiting Italy for matches and brought it back to the UK.

Despite the negative associations of football hooliganism, clearly no publicity is bad publicity because the brand’s popularity infiltrated into UK garage and Britpop artists, the biggest of which was Oasis. And the rest is history.

The UK stands as Stoney’s number one fangirl, endorsed by grime and rap bigshots like Dave, Skepta, and J Hus. Nothing compares to Drake’s love affair with the brand, however. He has worked double time as the brand’s hype man, even making himself a $100,000 golden crystal-studded necklace featuring the compass rose logo.

Stemming from his passion for British rap and street culture, Drake was key in putting Stone Island on the world map. Celebrities like Dua Lipa, Adam Sandler, Jack Harlow, Spike Lee, Jay Z, Travis Scott have all been spotted wearing the badge. 

While definitely more mainstream now, the badge transcends the simple status symbol; for those in the know- subculture fans or technical clothing lovers, it’s a badge of honour and symbol of community.

 

 

Stone Island and Football

Stone Island's connection with English footy fans was significant, especially among Terrace Casuals and Hooligans. Stoney was even featured in movies like Green Street or the Football Factory.

The rowdy fans’ commitment to outdoing their rivals extended beyond the field to clothing, with Stone Island, Fred Perry, Lacoste, Adidas, and Sergio Tacchini dominating their style.

While the brand's sturdy outerwear became synonymous with football fandom, Stone Island wasn't thrilled about its association with the violent reputation of these groups. Yet can it really complain? If it weren’t for this part of its history, the brand may have stayed under the radar.

In fact, many of the casual culture now find Stone Island too mainstream. 

So, Stoney has baggage, but nothing we can’t get over. 

It eventually embraced the football world in 2022 with a New Balance collaboration, bridging its Terrace Culture past and the current football fashion trend, stirring excitement among both retired hooligans and young footy fans.

 

 

Is Stone Island Expensive?

I’m not going to lie, Stone Island is spenny, like all luxury brands. However, its price reflects the high-quality materials, design, brand legacy, and extensive research and technology invested in its pieces.

Unlike fast fashion, Stone Island's garments will last you a long time and be made from high-performance materials. It’s mostly made in Italy, which is all you want from an Italian brand.

Also, it’s got some pretty original, science-heavy pieces, like jackets that change colour based on temperature. Surely that’s worth a higher price tag?

Can You Get Stone Island Cheap?

While Stone Island comes with a luxury price tag, second-hand pieces can be found at more affordable prices on platforms like eBay or Vestiare Collective. Beware of extremely cheap offers, as they are likely to be counterfeit. Alternatively, you can explore discounted Stone Island items right here at THREADSPY. 

So, if you don’t know, now you know. 

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