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The history of the crewneck sweatshirt

26 March 2019


Since 1913 right up until today, the crewneck sweatshirt continues to an icon that is forever relevant. Make it yours with our Stanley/Stella Sweatshirt Collection.

A lot of love and care has gone into the design and creation of our Iconic crewneck sweatshirts but the appreciation of this style dates as far back as 1913 when this classic round-neck cut actually provided some hidden (and stylish) functionalities. Read on to learn more about the classic cut we fondly call ‘crewneck’.

In the navy

The crewneck started life in 1913 as a T-shirt which that issued to sailors in the US Navy. The original functionality of the design was to cover chest hair and provide warmth!

Sporting an icon

The crewneck sweatshirt which we know today took life in 1920 when a football player named Benjamin Russell Jr decided to look for an alternative to the itchy wool jerseys which he and his teammates would sweat through during games. The crewneck sweatshirt was born and rolled out by Russell Sr who made his son’s design a reality. Not only were these sweatshirts cooler, but the roomy fit also offered American football players enough space to add football shoulder pads. On top of this, the design put durability at the forefront, and the style would, quite literally, take a beating. The crewneck sweatshirt proved so popular that fans started wearing it as casual wear and by the 1950s they were fundamentally a staple of not just every athlete’s wardrobe but every fan’s too.

Current day

Today, the crewneck sweatshirt forms part of a collection that we call ‘forever relevant.’ Steeped in history yet continuing to speak to a new generation for its style, durability, and iconicity. Our Iconic Changer, Stanley Stroller and Stella Tripster crewneck sweatshirts work to respect the heritage of this style but offer a take that is truly modern. Currently available in all the ‘must have’ colours of SS19, the focus is on making this iconic style modern with pops of colours set against classics and neutrals – truly something for everyone. The fits are also reworked to fit today’s evolving fashion, with the Changer offering set-in sleeves and the Stanley Stroller and Stella Tripster giving the perfect fit with raglan sleeves. More importantly, we craft the whole collection in organic cotton and recycled polyester for a more responsible interpretation, and with an end result that is soft to the skin.

An Icon

Our Changer, Stanley Stoller and Stella Tripster are an evolution of the times – classics totally reworked to be contemporary whilst still respecting heritage. Stanley/Stella Icons are set to stand the test of time.

Pictures/Lightning Archives (2018). Vintage Sweatshirts. EI Publishing Co., 242.