Stüssy didn’t actually start out as a men’s clothing company, in fact it was the company’s founding fathers’ surfboard business in its early days. Shawn Stussy started making surfboards from a young age and he would scrawl his surname on each board that he cut. The iconic way in which he wrote “Stüssy” was borrowed from his artist uncle, and served as part of the reason the brand became as successful as it is today.
Stüssy first saw big success when Shawn turned up at a surf trade show wearing his trademark T-shirts to sell his boards. Soon the crowds weren’t asking for his surfboards, but asking if they could buy some of his T’s – realising he was on to something big, he printed heaps of them and got them up for sale. That’s how the Stüssy clothing line for men, women and children started out.
From this point, Shawn Stussy travelled extensively and got a full, global image of what streetwear really meant. In the early 90s Stussy opened his first clothing shop in New York in with James Jebbia who later went on to found the clothing brand, Supreme. After this, the company carried on to expand dramatically and created its own style of clothing that transcends any genre like “streetwear”, “skatewear” or “surfwear”. Now, although no longer ran by Shawn, Stüssy stands proud as one of the most influential brands of its kind – for women’s and men’s clothing as well as for surfing stuff.