Hi all, to celebrate the launch of our Fortis London anorak, let's see what clothing collector and Three Stroke Productions collaborator Daniel Sferlazzo has to say about fashion, style, etc.. Thanks Demis (editor of Profilo Basso fanzine) for this interview that was originally published on their March issue
Introduce yourself to the readers of Profilo Basso Fanzine. What's your background? Hi everyone my name is Daniele, I live in Anzio, a seaside village near Rome. I call myself a researcher and collector of "gems", more or less of rare clothing that I jealously keep in my secret "archives".
If I have to start from the beginning of my passion for fashion, I think it all starts with sneakers and clothing from the late 90s. I was about twelve or thirteen years old when I saw the older boys with shiny Nike trainers on their feet, Fred Perry polo shirts, Levi's jeans, and tracksuits of their football teams sported like armor; and me from my village, where it was almost impossible to find those clothes, (before the web changed everything), used to get on the train with my friends to go to Via del Corso (well known shopping district) in Rome to buy something (when we could afford it) or simply to visit the shops. I believe this was my first real entry into the world of clothes. We know you are a collector of military clothing and Stone Island. How did this passion come about? My passion for military clothing started when I was about eighteen and started playing Softair as a game. I was fascinated by the clothes, the tactical vests, and by the camouflage jackets so similar, but in reality completely different from each other in shape and colours.
So I started to delve deeper and "study" the various equipment to understand the differences between the various camouflage patterns to appreciate the different styles of jackets. I automatically started to spend all my finances at that time on "real" American military clothing, (navy, special forces, marines, etc) Sometime after I stopping playing Softair, my two passions, street clothing and military clothing magically managed to meet and coexist thanks to Stone Island, which combines more "sporty" clothing with the functionality of the military clothing, and from there I really decided to concentrate on my passion for fashion, for every single detail, material. and workmanship.
Do you prefer old collections or those of more recent years with more technical modern clothing? I started buying Stone Island about seven years ago. I bought some recent items from current collections, but then I started wanting more: I wanted to have those items that in my opinion have marked the strength and history of the brand over the years; garments made using materials that thirty years ago were almost inconceivable. The first ice jackets, the first modular garments; and from there I began a journey that I don't think will ever stop. I honestly prefer vintage garments because they are a mix between real military clothing and today's more technical garments. For me they have a special charm, and above all they are still current, and sometimes futuristic, even thirty years after their release. Of all those you own, if you had to choose your favorite Stone Island jacket, which one would you choose? honestly I find it difficult to choose a jacket in particular from all those I have. Each piece of my collection has a story behind it, research, difficulty in finding it, the wait...
Let's just say that the favorite one is always the next one I'll buy; however if I had to choose one I would say the Ice Jacket of Stone Island from 1990. I tried to get hold of it for a lifetime, and in the end a dear friend of mine, who knew how much I wanted this piece of clothing, offered to sell it to me.
For years a cult in the casual scene and now adopted by trappers. It seems nowadays Stone Island is becoming an iconic brand for the younger lads. What do you think of this "new trend"?
I think this is an inevitable process. From Paninari to Ultras to the various rappers of today. Any company that wants to be global must work at 360 degrees and cannot think to remain the exclusivity of a "small" audience of customers. Stone Island has decided to expand its range of action with marketing moves, shops in strategic places in the world such as in China, Japan, America, etc. and all this is succeeding really well.
They have increased sales exponentially, in the same way they have also increased prices, to keep the brand high end and for this I am a bit sorry. I have no problem with all this as it's the market, everything goes on and must evolve. however tbh when I see trappers wearing a Stone Island jacket and maybe a shoe different from the other one, I'm not happy at all but at the same time who am I to judge? I try to continue to cultivate my passion with even more love for what Stone Island represents for me.
You recently collaborated with Three Stroke Productions on the "Fortis" project. Tell us how it all started and what it is ... Our collaboration for the Fortis London capsule was born almost by chance. I met the Three Stroke Productions team about two years ago, and we immediately found a synergy. One day during a chat we started talking about the possibility of adding something more to the Three Stroke Productions collection, something "strong". We didn't waste any time and started this new challenge. We immediately started to elaborate a few ideas, sketches etc.
We decided to add a more "technical" touch with some "military" inspirations to the Three Stroke Productions collection, while maintaining the identity built by the brand for over twenty years. This is how the Fortis London range was born. The spring / summer collection includes an anorak and sunglasses. For our anorak jacket we used a dyed ripstop fabric which is cotton reinforced by nylon threads. It's very resistant and the special "old effect" dyeing gives the garment a military and avant-garde look. This is only the beginning, and we are already at work for the following seasons. I'm telling you folks that the best is yet to come
Why the choice to go out with a jacket and a pair of glasses?
Let's say we focused on functionality. The jacket, which is inspired by an English military anorak from the second half of the 1900s seemed the right compromise between practicality and a piece of clothing with strong character. As soon as we saw the first prototype it was love at first sight. We have improved some details, chosen the shades of color and the garment dyeing technique, and yes we're very happy about the outcome. Subsequently, we wanted to add an accessory, something with a strong image capable to attract some attention. At the same time something useful. We already had good contacts with some eyewear manufacturers. Real professionals whom I will never stop thanking; we took a sample from their archive, and we studied and modified it together, according to our taste and style. Does it still make sense nowadays to talk about Made in Italy? Why not? We are famous all over the world for our high level of quality in fashion. Also our Foris shades are 100% Made in Italy What are your favorite brands and why? I definitely put Stone Island first. Massimo Osti has always been my source of inspiration, and in my opinion he is a step above all others. What he has managed to do over the decades is incredible, and we still enjoy it today. Then I love brands like Three Stroke Productions, who believe in their ideals and keep being true to their roots with a contemporary approach. I have always been fascinated by Japanese fashion, their culture, their attention to detail and their dedication to quality are unique in my opinion. If I have to name a few I'd say Yohji Yamamoto, Issey Miyake, Rei Kawakubo,
You are not the first to mention Japanese brands as your favorites... Why do you think so many Japanese brands are gaining more and more space and consensus?
Their style and attention to detail, the choice of materials, the top quality manufacturing. these are all the things that Japanese brands and stylists "have in common" with my way of seeing fashion. In recent years I have seen more and more people approaching Japanese brands. Maybe there's stronger interconnections between different continents that are making things easier, and we also have everything at our fingertips. We see more and more "influencers" and more famous VIPs wearing brands that only a few years ago were simply unknown to most people.
You see people looking "hype" with junya watanabe trousers, "techboys" wearing a cav empt jacket or rappers with Kapital jeans global or a Visvim shirt. I think that seeing people of influence across social media wearing certain pieces of clothing play a big role in igniting curiosity around a brand, a stylist, or a garment. Should you give yourself a "label" how would you define your style? Let's just say that sometimes I feel like a soldier at fashion week, in the sense that my style, my way of dressing and seeing fashion is different from today's stereotypes. Obviously I don't judge anyone, but when I leave my house in the morning I have to like myself, but above all I need a comfortable outfit which doesn't mean wearing a tracksuit. Everything I need must be there; the right pockets in the right place, the lace or zip where they are needed, the rainproof material if it rains, and everything that allows me to actually say to myself "I am well dressed today". Style and functionality...
Would you liketo know more about Fortis London?