Tag Archives: stone island

ARI UP

arimarcopoulosnotyet

If you’re here, I’ll be presumptuous — and not in that irksome clickbait “You won’t believe what…” way —and assume that you own something by Ari Marcopoulos. Ari is one of the greats, working with the Gucci’s new order as well as Supreme, and his documents of NYC skate culture are immortal. Continue reading ARI UP

OPEN

openmic21

Every time I’m looking for good quality imagery of golden era (2001-2005) grime style, it becomes clear that Ewen Spencer and RWD’s Simon Wheatly were some of the few photographers who took the scene seriously enough to document it. I reckon the majority were scared that they’d get taxed for their camera and Nokia 7600. That, plus a sense that early 2000s sportswear and oversized streetwear would never be something to get nostalgic about — especially with the “chav” tag being hurled around, and a tabloid-fuelled folk panic when it came to hooded sweatshirts at a point where people were in fear of getting slapped in public and recorded on a grainy phone video, with their ordeal shared on playgrounds across the country. It seems like yesterday, which is why I’ve always been perplexed that there isn’t an abundance of imagery online. Grime’s boom time preempts online’s total reign over print and it exploded and dipped before the iPhone era. Now grime is a big deal again (So Solid deserve a lot of retrospective respect for paving a way — last year, a North Face store I visited a few times in Tokyo seemed to be ahead of the curve, with Asher D, Romeo and company inexplicably on full blast), with those who never fully shook off their roots ready to make some coin. Fortunately, those who took the shots are getting their due alongside the cast of characters who called the shots. Ewen Spencer’s Open Mic is a great book and it’s 10 years old this year, so he printed 500 copies of a follow-up to celebrate that anniversary. Expanding interviews (the insight from Lord of the Mics’ Ratty is always welcome) from last year’s Channel 4 documentary in association with Dazed, there’s some bonus photos in there too. Go get Open Mic Vol.2 from right here and swot up so you can say you were into it from day when Kanye drops that inevitable BBK connected track.

openmix23

Regardless of whether you have the slightest interest in genre moviemaking, you’ve ever worked on a project and seen it go to hell on so many levels that you just want to wander off into the wilderness to sulk, you’ll be able to identify with director Richard Stanley (I’m guessing that you might have seen Hardware and/or Dust Devil if you found yourself here — if not, they’re well worth watching). Full disclosure — I’m a huge fan of John Frankenheimer’s work and I like the 1996 adaptation of the Island of Dr. Moreau a lot. I may be the only person to ever say that, but the sense of threat, the claustrophobia in that jungle set, the makeup and the brutal nature of it make it a gem as far as I’m concerned — David Thlewis is great in his lead role and Marlon Brando is particularly peculiar in this one (though it’s not quite Missouri Breaks levels of eccentricity). I watched it having read shitty reviews because of a colossal crush on Fairuza Balk that had me watching her flicks unconditionally, and was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. Despite being the film’s one fan, I know that there was a better version planned under Stanley’s direction and tales abound over the decades regarding the chaos around the shoot — tropical storms, plus the perfect storm of double-trouble egos in casting both Brando and Val Kilmer.

In the troubled production documentary stakes, David Gregory’s Lost Soul: the Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr. Moreau is up there with the superb Overnight, the uncut Wreckage and Rage: the Making of Alien3 and Heart of Darkness: a Filmmaker’s Apocalypse (in one colossal coincidence, it transpires that Stanley’s grandfather is Sir Henry Morton Stanley — an explorer believed to be the inspiration for Kurtz in Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, as reinterpreted by Brando in Apocalypse Now). Lost Souls also joins Jodorowsky’s Dune (as with …Dr. Moreau I love the resulting Lynch film, regardless of flop status) in the compelling explorations of the greatest films that never were. Worth watching for Graham Humphrey’s concept art alone, this film is sad, compelling viewing and an education on the way a studio like New Line was operating in the mid 1990s. It’s a shame that Thlewis’ name isn’t even mentioned (he wrote his own 60-page account of filming that I’ve been trying to hunt down for the last 8 years), there’s no Val Kilmer interview, and Frankenheimer passed away 13 years ago (had he been willing to talk about the experience, it would almost certainly have been quotable after quotable). Lost Soul is screening sporadically at the moment and it’s also available via VOD on Vimeo if you’re residing Stateside (or know how to make your browser think you are). Highly recommended.

moreau

Mr. Tom Scott put me onto this tremendous chat with William Gibson about clothes on Rawr Denim, wherein Gibson demonstrates an enviable knowledge of vintage and contemporary apparel, and reveals just how much of an ACRONYM fanboy he is. I liked the mention of “gray man” dressing to stay unseen — a survival and security term that represents the anti-flash polar opposite of peacocking for a mode of everyday camouflage. To be deliberately nondescript apparently requires a fair amount of thought, and isn’t just about chucking on a Superdry jacket and a top from Next.

I like this Bored of Southsea Stone Island-inspired graphic. I’ve heard a fair amount of gripes from associates regarding the love that Osti’s output is getting after the Supreme project, but hasn’t the brand always been aspirational? Do people shell out on expensive tech outerwear to wear it ironically? Still, most of the stuff I saw as a kid was very fake, and I was never an Armani Jeans kind of guy. Some skaters came up idolising Stoney, but I get the impression that a fair amount also experienced a fair amount of hassle from the kind of guys who donned the compass. Given Bored’s proximity to Pompey’s ground, it’s safe to say that the team have seen their fair share over the years.

boredsouthseastoneisland

ONE MAN GOOGLE



There’s too much nostalgia on this blog right now. I blame the history lessons I’ve been working on, but I can always trust Errolson and Michaela Sachenbacher’s Acronym vision, the Errolson-helmed Stone Island Shadow Project to look ahead rather than picking through the past. Both lines have videos doing the internet rounds right now, demonstrating that technical apparel can be its own martial art (I wish there was a class near me teaching Acronymjutsu, with a John Kreece type in a GT-J27PL hardshell yelling about mercy ) — these promos always make other shoots and videos for other lines look unappealingly static, while cutting through the cliches of presenting everyday performance as a tech-Mumford affair. I like my GORE-TEX garms displayed with the requisite balance of the clinical and the kinetic. But “standard” Stone Island is dong a great job of taking consumers through their individual processes — have you wondered why a Raso Hand Painted Camo Field Jacket will run you over a grand? Six-minutes edit of a lengthy set of steps from a simple-looking military grade cotton to the final, unique distressed-done-right appearance is showcased in the video above. Probably best not to try it yourself at home, because hurling corrosive paste on a bit of army surplus would probably lead to injury or breathing difficulties. It’s good to see actual innovation at work.

The new issue of Business of Fashion brought this interview with Karl Lagerfeld to my attention — Karl might be a veritable production line of soundbites whenever someone hits record on the iPhone, but he excels with this one, “I want to know everything. I go to bookshops nearly every day. You have to be your own Google. I have an unbelievable visual memory. I can remember everything and that’s very important…” I suspect that approach to research is the key to the appeal of Acronym and the longevity of Stone Island.

OSTI



Sleep deprivation means I can’t think of anything worth mentioning here beyond this video. I remember reading about the Q&A taking place at NYC’s Parsons school of design last year on the Facebook page launched for the release of Ideas From Massimo Osti, but I never realised that it was on YouTube. With Esquire/Arena‘s Nick Sullivan, Daniela Facchinato Osti and some good archive footage of the god himself at the start, it’s worth using 52 minutes of your life up watching this. I hope there’s a feature-length Osti documentary one day, but this is a good start and a solid supplement to last year’s double headshot of big books. As big jacket season truly arriving on these shores, this is a good incitement to put down a grand on something with a fancy dye process.

ARCHIVE

I’m still out the country and still slacking on blog entries. More time eating and less time pondering the minutiae of some unnecessary matters proves toxic to my creativity and I’m trying to at least feign a break from the old routine. Seeing a 1982 Dondi sketch for sale in the Block Party 2012 show earlier in the week (alongside some Barry McGee and Haze pieces I wish I owned) had me thinking back to the swag exhibited in the above image of Futura, Dondi and Zephyr in LA, taken from the ‘Style Master General’ book. They weren’t just talking paint and ink with that title. Member’s Only jackets, tracksuit trousers and Nikes executed in a non-corny manner. Now I’m in LA and about to, presumably, end up doing some form of exercise that’s Nike+ (this Nate VanHook interview on the Hue is cool) related this afternoon, lacking even 0.1.% of the style exhibited by Donald, Lenny and Andrew right there. Though it was good to see Riff Raff holding it down in a bar last night, plus Antwuan Dixon drunk outside trying to get in (on a skate note, Koston Epic’ly Later’d coming soon).

When in doubt, throw up some old ads on the site; these date back to 1986, but are good examples of advertising for a market beyond the usual male audience. Women’s Air Forces (which were reworked for women’s feet rather than just scaled down) and an enviable roster of kids’ shoes with the ‘Some Athletes Haven’t Made it Big Yet’ copy are pretty good.

Stone Island’s Stone Island 30 exhibition sounds immense and a good reason to go brave the mean-mugging hordes in snug tailoring who’ve picked up on Pitti over the last couple of years. The book is there too and Mr. Errolson Hugh and Future Concept Lab have got some shots of ‘ARCHIVIO ‘992-‘012’, which I need in my life immediately. The exhibition version comes with a tee, but I can live without the promo garment, because at 653 pages in length, it looks like it’s worth the wait. Capping off the week, Drake’s Stone Island knitwear in the ‘No Lie’ video is an interesting sartorial choice that sees a global star dressing like a British road rapper. The last Stone Island/CP samples sale was significantly more gooned-out than a Drake/Chris Brown scuffle.





COLLECTIONS

People still get injured over sports footwear and it’s a baffling thing. As somebody who kind of works in footwear retail, to see rows of tents outside stores is a shock…after all, everybody was in Tricker’s about seven minutes ago, and it’s doubly odd to hear that “sneakers are dead” from people who might want to look out the window once in a while. Tents, riots, newspaper headlines…probably not the sign that anything’s on the wane. And the reseller’s the bogeyman again like he was with Dunks circa 2004. In caveman times those who missed out on getting sticks after the fire hype went viral on cave walls, because of their inter-tribe popularity probably declared fire to be “over” or the stick game to be “played out.” If you want to sleep rough for a few days to get something, do your thing and stay safe — I salute that level of dedication. I hope the contents of the box lives up to those sleep deprived expectations.

But people assaulting or killing for footwear might not be anything new — in fact it’s the darkest retro of our ’90’s preoccupation — but imagine spending decades behind bars over shoes. There must still be folks in jail who murdered kids over 8-ball jacket envy in 1990 — it must be odd to tell a new cellmate that. It’s hardly a crime of passion, rather a crime of fly-by-night fashion. And when the 8-ball killer is released in 2015, with a Mystikal-like lack of internet knowledge, it might be an ‘I’m Gonna Git You Sucka’ Antonio Fargas moment, or, at the current trajectory, as he emerges in his Starter hat, Champion sweat and Air Flights, the killer emerges penitentiary “on trend” looking like he’s a kid with a premature ageing condition. People need trend forecasting before they kill for clothing.

However, if I did have to slay another human being for a jacket, it would probably be for something akin to a Ten C one. On first electronic impressions it’s all drab olives, but having seen Mr. Gary Aspden’s Ten C coat in the flesh and felt the Japanese-made mix of 60% polyester and 40% nylon mix that makes up the shell and is clearly built to last, I was sold. One for the wishlist and a good compromise between innovation and stuck-in-the-mud icons from former Stoners Paul Harvey and Alessandro Pungetti. Shouts to Gary for the intro to that line. Anything built to last a lifetime is still going to end up accompanied by 100+ more pieces that are “the only” ones you’ll ever need, leaving you with a wardrobe of expensive immortals. The website (www.ten-c.it) copy doesn’t match the garment quality, but each piece of Harvey’s audio introduction to them is well worth paying attention to.

On that subject, what became of the Paul Harvey archive? Tantalising images of a progressive pile of technical jackets, shoes and fabrics went online in 2008 so I assume the warehouse’s contents went to a good home. You can’t tell Paul anything about fabrics, fit or construction, so that he stripped it down to necessities for the new project is interesting — superfluous aspects can be a life or death issue in military gear, so the lack of becomes an innovation in itself. On the Stone Island subject, the 30th anniversary book of jacket porn that was hinted at in the new year is apparently only available as part of a package with a 30th anniversary jacket reproduction according to Stone Island’s replies beneath a YouTube video of Carlo Rivetti talking outerwear from last month.

Paul Harvey’s archive was considerable, but there’s other admirable feats of information fanaticism out there too — few can collect like James Hyman has done. As a print disciple myself who has had to bounce back from multiple parental paper culls to start from scratch, bar the stray back issues that evaded the recycle bin, to see James’ collection on his blog a few years back was mind-boggling. ‘Vanity Fair,’ ‘Select,’ ‘The Face,’ rap ‘zines I’d never spotted in Tower, ‘Playboy,’ ‘Loaded’ (when it was good) and lots of ‘NME’s is my idea of a pulped tree paradise. It looked like a walk-in Google. Now he’s made it a “proper” archive and it looks spectacular. I guarantee that a fair proportion of what he has amassed has never been online. With stacks of magazines from a time when journalism had an earnestness that paid dividends, the ’80’s ‘NME’ pile is of particular interest to me and his unpolished phone video footage on YouTube extolling the cover-to-cover power of the era’s music journalism is infectious. Very, very infectious.



You want to see another collection? Check out the vintage Stussy on the newly revamped Hideout site’s blog, taken from the collection of Keith Wainwright. If you’d owned that leather in its day, a certain subsection of young males would have pretty much worshipped you as a god.

Marc Singer will always be a hero for that starring role in Don Coscarelli’s ‘The Beastmaster’ and its ‘Style Wars’ connection, but for playing Donovan in the mini-series ‘V’ and the subsequent series, he gets props (the incredible end theme to the miniseries was composed by Barry De Vorzon who composed the opening theme to ‘The Warriors’ and ‘Theme From S.W.A.T.’), but for wearing Nike Lava Domes with some serious regularity, Singer is pretty much immortal to me.

GORDON, WALTER & GHOSTFACE

There’s a big week ahead, but I won’t be indulging in much of what’s going on (though I would really like to see the Christopher Shannon show at LFW) because I’m not invited and because I have an unnatural amount of assignments that I’ve greedily agreed to to finish. Freelancing is boring like that. So all I can do here this evening is bang out the things I’ve been checking for over the last couple of days. The most notable thing next week is Supreme London’s Thursday opening – already I see people declaring it to be a sign that the brand is “mainstream” but that criticism seems cyclical — the ’95 kids decried the ’00 kids who decried the ’04 kids who are decrying the ’07 kids who are hating on a perceived influx of ’11 Odd Future fans touching their beloved brand. It’s like a 5-panel hatted foodchain of hate. Funnily enough, plenty of kids crying “NEWBIE” weren’t even aware of the brand when Kanye unexpectedly wore the sweat in ‘Vibe’ back in winter 2003. What a stupid and strange realm we reside in…

Mr. Andrew Bunney and Darryl Saunders are making low-key power moves with the British Remains brand. From their own carefully selected t-shirt fit (and Bunney is super-careful about that kind of thing) they don’t leave much to chance, but the capsule collection with Japan’s Uniform Experiment gives them a new blank to play with, and I really like the circular homage to a humdrum existence. Go check his Honeyee blog for the rest.

I’m also massively impressed with the Rap/R&B metal vest that did the Tumblr rounds this week. That Jodeci patch is the winner for me, but James Jirat Patradoon‘s twitter indicates that he (James’s work is awesome) and Aaron Kuswara have another 50 logos to go and might be selling the patches separately. Just when I thought comedy rap references were done, this comes along and knocks me sideways. It looks like a labour of love too.

If you’ve ever hungrily delved into Google looking for food information, there’s a fair chance you’ve stumbled into Serious Eats. Some of the best sandwiches I’ve ever eaten were recommendations from this global scoped network of bloggers and affiliated sites (including the awesome Slice and A Hamburger Today). They’ve gone real world by putting out a 360+ page book this coming winter that promises to match the quality of the site. The infamous Hamburger Fatty Melt is in there, but I don’t think the Fake Shack will be.

How can Money Mayweather pop shots at the mighty Larry Merchant? I love Larry’s deliberate post-fight interview style, complete with deliberate pauses and his earlier writing that matched the mighty Gay Talese’s sports journalism. He’s the king of slow motion antagonism. But seeing an 80 year old man stepping to a 34 year old man was Worldstar gone global. Floyd needs to watch out though, because back in ’97, Merchant had put hands on a buffoon defending an enraged Wayne McCullouch fan who interrupted his Daniel Zaragosa interview. God bless the kind of people who create this nonsense.

The homie Sofarok made this montage of Drew Struzan renditions of sneakers from his posters. This deserved to go triple E-platinum and be retweeted forever, but half of the MAG-preoccupied herbs don’t know who Struzan is. Fuck you if you don’t know about Drew. Charles Morgan knows what’s up. This should be made into its own poster.

I’m freshly re-obsessed with the classic footage of Franz “the Flying Tailor” Reichelt and his idiotic death dive from the Eiffel Tower. It played like a silent movie version of ‘Faces of Death’ but Franz’s flying coat demonstration also feels like the doomed great-grandfather of the latest brace of Stone Island videos.

Whatever your leaning, you can’t deny (think ‘Deer Hunter’) that the notion of  small towners heading to war and the aftermath makes for powerful viewing. ‘Where Soldiers Come from’ has finally hit US cinemas. The destruction of individuals always drives the point home across more than the mass body bag bombast of press coverage, and those repeat roadside bomb photos can become a little anonymous. Sometimes you need to study a microcosm to appreciate the bigger picture.

I’m re-obsessed with Clarks Wallabees at the moment. It never fails to throw me as to what was deemed a ‘moccasin’ back in the 1920s, courtesy of Padmore & Barnes (who were, of course, the masters of Wallabee manufacture back when they were made in Southern Ireland). For me, worn right, the Wallabee, Weaver and the Padmore are some of the most perfect footwear designs ever. The marketing materials were pleasantly to the point, but frequently text-heavy (my favourite kids of old ad) and keen to dismiss copyists. I always wondered as to whether they were as plagued by copyists as they were circa. 1989/1990 when “baggy” seemed to affect even the most provincial UK outposts. Before there was Ghostface, there was Gordon Monro and Walter Melvin…

R.I.P. Nathan Clark.