Empire Ave Speaks With Shawn Stussy

by stab March 08, 2016 2 min read

Shawn Stussy is kinda the man.He is the man who started Stüssy clothing in the early 80s. The logo originated from Shawn scrawling his surname on surfboards he was shaping, and soon found its way onto teos and more. Despite its relaxed beginnings in Cali surf culture, the company is now one of the world’s most recognisable (and enduring) streetwear labels. Empire Ave recently spoke with the man himself while he was in Oz for Carbon Festival. The two-part interview is very engaging. Here’s a few cuts, with links at the bottom.


“It was never going to be clothes. I was only a surfboard company.”



“So there was no collectability culture, there was no old board collectors then at all, the old boards worth heaps today were put up under the house. It was Barry Kanaiaupuni with red rocket, Lopez, Brewer, and Reno that mattered now. The short board era had begun. no looking back, and no tankers allowed. If you lived somewhere else, this info took a bit more time to travel, you know what I mean?”




“It’s been 15 years. Obviously I sold my business, so you sell that logo. I never had any intentions of doing anything again, but all through that time my gal always called me S Double – you know you have like little nicknames, that was what she would call me. So, when I was humouring making surfboards again and what would I call them, it ended up just being S/DOUBLE.”




“I got no inspiration from the surf world.”



Read Part One in full, here.

Read Part Two in full, here.

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