WORDS BY JOSEPH FURNESS
Massimo Osti, founder of Stone Island, is a man many consider the godfather of urban streetwear. After revolutionising fashion twice – by first pioneering the use of graphing printing techniques and then developing a garment-dyeing process – Osti created his greatest invention: Tela Stella.
Osti's existing brand, CP Company, combined vintage military, workwear and sportswear silhouettes and used cutting-edge Italian fabrics – but this new tarpaulin material didn’t fit in with the brand's aesthetic. Thus, the businessman decided to establish a new label he called Stone Island. The garment engineer formed the name from two words that stood out to Otsi every time he’d read a Joseph Conrad novel. The brand logo represents its connection with the nautical world and its direction towards innovation.
The first Stone Island collection consisted of just seven jackets, all made of Tela Stella. The rigid material was enzyme washed until it was soft enough to wear and had the perfect faded look. Otsi’s approach to treating the material became a hallmark of the brand. Keep reading to find out more about Stone Island apparel.
Where are Stone Island Collections Made?
Stone Island’s collections are made in Italy, and the brand’s headquarters and research laboratories are based in Ravarino, Modena. Here’s what’s located inside the European base.
1. Material Research
The material research department is where the brand tests different fabrics and dyeing techniques. According to rumours, there’s no flexible material the brand hasn’t tried to dye.
2. Historical Archive
Stone Island’s historical archives house every single Stone Island piece ever made. That's over 40,000 garments! The historical archives allow the design team to delve into the label’s archives for inspiration.
3. Color Laboratory
Stone Island’s color laboratory is where experience, knowledge, effort and innovation unite. The brand enjoys experimenting with color and has created over 60,000 dye recipes since its inception.
What is Stone Island Shadow Project?
Founded in 2008, Stone Island Shadow Project started as a collaboration between Carlo Rivetti – CEO and creative director of Stone Island – and cult techwear label ACRONYM®. Now, Shadow Project is considered a sub-label of the brand.
Rivetti calls Stone Island Shadow Project the brand’s “Formula One team”, as it’s a sub-label that’s even more dedicated to innovation than the OG label. The aim? To engineer high-tech garments for contemporary consumers.
Stone Island Jackets
Tela Stella is just one innovation in a line of many. For example, in 1991, Stone Island was the first to use a thin layer of glass microspheres to create a reflective jacket, and in 1998, the brand introduced the world to thermo-sensitive liquid crystal coating. Additionally, the brand was the first to make reversible jackets and waterproof polyurethane-coated jackets.
How Warm Are Stone Island Jackets?
Stone Island jackets are made to withstand all weather conditions, but not all of them are suitable for keeping you warm. So, if keeping cosy is your priority, look for Stone Island pieces that feature down insulation and/or multiple layers. It sounds like common sense, but you’d be surprised by how many people automatically assume any Stone Island jacket is suitable for sub-freezing climates.
How Do You Clean Stone Island jackets?
The first thing an owner of a Stone Island jacket should do before washing their garment is check the washing instructions on the attached label. Generally speaking, it is recommended that you turn your Stone Island jacket inside out, wash it at a low temperature and then leave it to air dry. Under no circumstances should you machine dry the layer.
Stone Island Sweatshirts, Hoodies & Knitwear
Warm, soft and colorful – it’s easy to see why the brand’s selection of long sleeve mid-layers are a popular entry point into the world of Stone Island.
In particular, Stone Island’s knitwear offerings are emblematic of the brand’s innovation. Tightly knit, twisted or thick yarned, Stone Island’s knitwear utilizes intricate jacquard techniques to create unique patterns.
Stone Island Overshirts
Not quite a jacket yet still more substantial than a classic shirt, Stone Island’s overshirts are the ideal layering piece for transitional weather. And when it comes to overshirts, Stone Island is known for being playful with its aesthetic – there’s shimmering color-changing nylons, crinkled cotton hemp blends and more.
Stone Island T-Shirts, Shirts and Polos
Stone Island’s selection of polo shirts, T-shirts and shirts are well-cut silhouettes fashioned from premium materials. Nothing more, nothing less; it’s not broken, and they don’t need to fix it. All you must do is decide how flashy you want to be: will you go with the heavily branded fit or a more subtle fit.
Stone Island Trousers
Stone Island trousers are defined by their utilitarian details and hard-wearing construction. Popular silhouettes include the brand's stretchy, lightweight cargo pants and elasticated cuff pants that are available in unique colors and finishes.
Stone Island Joggers
Stone Island joggers are a necessary addition to a contemporary wardrobe – they’re perennially modish, uber comfortable and available in a slew of colorways. Style them with your Stone Island hoodie for a tracksuit look, or with one of the brand’s overshirts for a smart-casual fit.
How Does Stone Island Fit?
Whilst early Stone Island silhouettes were renowned for running big, contemporary pieces are commonly tight and slim. So, if you prefer an oversized fit, we suggest you opt for a size up from your regular size. Oh, and remember that all of the label's pieces follow Italian sizing standards.
Stone Island Sizing and Fit Tips
Stone Island hoodies fit true to size, although you may want to size up if you'd prefer an oversized fit.
Stone Island sweaters and knitwear pieces fit small, so you must size up.
Stone Island jackets fit true to size, but size up if you’re into winter layering – especially if you’re considering one of the brand’s parkas.
Stone Island trousers fit true to size but could be a little long if your legs are on the short side of the spectrum.
Stone Island Tops and Jackets Sizing Guide
Stone Island Trousers Sizing Guide