Street Fashion and the Footie Fan
One of Toronto’s subcultures that I enjoy the most is its footie culture. As a huge EPL fan it’s always fun to wake up on a Saturday morning, meet your friends at the pub, and watch your team try to not ruin your day while drinking a few pints. Your club’s fellow supporters become a bit like an extended family, complete with your favourite uncle, your favourite cousin, and those distant relatives you would rather not be related to.
It makes sense that Toronto would have a strong football culture. Immigrants from places like England, Italy, Portugal, Jamaica, Colombia and many other places shape the city. Almost anywhere outside of North America, football will be one of the most, if not the most popular sport. So we grow up exposed to hockey, basketball, etc, but football is also present for a lot of us.
Our footie culture is unique, though. It’s not like an England where if you’re wearing the wrong shirt you can’t even go into certain pubs. My favourite place by far to watch matches in the city is Scallywags. On any given matchday you can go in there and see Arsenal, United, Liverpool, Everton and other supporters watching together. There’s definitely a lot of banter, but I’ve never seen anything escalate beyond words. There’s a civility that underpins the relationships so you can mock someone’s side during a match and then have a pint together afterwards.
I think TFC plays a role in that. There are still some snobby types that might tell you MLS is trash and they only watch Serie A, EPL, La Liga or whatever, but I think those people are in the minority nowadays. A lot of people who love footie from outside North America also support TFC, so the guy who is your adversary Saturday morning is wearing the same shirt as you on Saturday afternoon.
Personally, as a footie obsessed guy and a fashion obsessed guy, football kits have always inspired me. There are so many iconic, beautiful kits that I love. I’m dedicated Arsenal man, so the other club team stuff I just admire from a distance. Even with Arsenal stuff though over the last few years I’ve stopped buying as regularly as in the past.
Over the last few years I’ve found if I’m wearing a football shirt, I’m probably going to the pub for a match, and going straight home to change afterwards. Toronto is very much a natural fiber city - cottons, wools, leathers, etc make up a lot of what people wear. Synthetic fibers can be found for sure, but moreso in outerwear and performance gear that someone might wear to the gym or to actually play sports in. So for a street fashion, wearing a 100% polyester shirt can tend to make a person look underdressed.
For this winter we took inspiration from footie culture and tried to make it more palatable for street fashion. We tried to take the essence that makes a footie shirt so great - that balance of energy and tradition - and put it into stuff that makes more sense for spending the whole day in.
The collection is called Terrace, and it’ll be up on the site soon!