Larry Stylinson is a conspiracy hellhole involving two of music’s biggest stars

Larry Stylinson Illustration

Larry Stylinson. // Illustration by Bianca Manninger

Do you love a good conspiracy theory? We do too. Not the ones about who stole the election, but the ones about being so online poisoned that people believe some of the funniest, most disconnected nonsense imaginable. That’s why we’re starting to dive into more of this wacky disinformation—especially since you never know who in your life might be starting to stumble on that cliff. Today, a friend of The Pitch, Maura Matvey, is diving into a One Direction nightmare that we couldn’t NOT tell you is real to too many.


Some on the internet would have you believe that Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson, both members of the band One Direction, have been in a secret, romantic relationship since 2011 that was forcibly hidden from the public eye by their management company.

Despite One Direction’s “hiatus” 6 years ago, those who believe in their secret relationship (known as Larries) point to a myriad of evidence that not only is the couple still together, but their relationship is on the brink of a major change: its revelation to the world. Tiktok made a crucial error in my algorithm whenever they brought me to Larry TikTok. I’m in a unique position, completely immersed yet with one foot still in reality, to bring you the updated summary that nobody asked for.

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The Socks

The socks tie into a central theme and citation of proof of Larry: blue and green. A brief, vital history: each member of One Direction had specific color microphones. Harry’s was always green and Louis’s blue. Harry Styles released limited edition “Treat People with Kindness” (TPWK) socks in November of 2020.

Larry microphones

Harry and Louis with their respective green and blue microphones

All advertisements showed only the blue—fans were surprised upon receipt of their purchase in January that it was actually a blue/green pair of hearts. 

Could this be Harry Styles letting his fans know that he knows that they know he is in a romantic relationship with former bandmate Louis Tomlinson? Other TPWK socks were also available and shown in advertisements as a pink heart. These turned out to be a pink/white pair, though this color pairing is inconsequential. Unfortunately, this is as overt as Harry gets in his attempts to hint towards the truth.

Louis, on the other hand, seems to be taking a much bolder approach.

The Album Art

On January 31st, 2021, Louis Tomlinson’s debut solo album Walls hit its 1-year anniversary. For 24 hours, the Spotify background images changed in its honor to drawings relating to each song’s subject matter. Fans noticed that some of the album art coordinated with some of Harry Styles’s tattoos (note: he has 52 in total). Tattoos are another alleged significant representation of Harry and Louis’s relationship; there are several speculated coordinating couple tattoos.

The “Fearless” cover art (pictured below) included an anatomical heart. Harry has a similar heart tattooed on his left bicep—Louis has an arrow on his left arm. Harry got the anatomical heart on February 18th, 2014. Two weeks later (March 8, 2014), Louis gets an arrow. The traditional heart and arrow tattoo motif, split into a couple’s tattoo, despite Harry’s anatomical heart being from a flash sheet and originally designed sans-arrow. What could this drawing be, if not a representation of Louis and his lover’s coordinating tattoos? 

There are two other Larry tattoos that appeared in the cover art: a butterfly, for Harry’s butterfly chest tattoo (to Louis’s “It Is What It Is,” both allegedly inspired by Papillon) and a rose, for Harry’s rose tattoo that coordinates with a dagger on Louis. Again, the argument is that these are two parts of the same tattoo, split between the couple for a subtle representation of their love. 

Figure 5

Butterfly cover art image and rose cover art image from Louis Tomlinson’s Walls 1-year anniversary Spotify celebration.

Louis’s Spotify album art enhances the hidden significance in his album (discussed below in relation to Louis’s new 369 merchandise). When you consider this with his mysterious merchandise drop along with some recent professional and personal developments, all signs allegedly point to Louis finally having the freedom to come out of the closet.

First, social media activity from Louis’s long-time girlfriend, Eleanor Calder (note: Eleanor is not the mother of his child—they broke up for 2 years from 2015-2017, at which point in time Louis’s child was born) adds fuel to the conspiracy. Eleanor’s friends unfollowed Louis, and Niall Horan (another member of One Direction) unfollowed Eleanor.Screen Shot 2021 07 21 At 82307 Pm

Additionally, Louis dropped his previous record labels Sony and Syco to sign with BMG

Finally, a very strange article was published on March 20th. It seems to be a fluff piece on Harry Styles, describing him as “grounded” when living in Ben Winston’s attic during the X-Factor. Coming from a girl with two Harry Styles records hanging on her wall—who cares?

The Larries, that’s who.

To the Larries, this tells a story: Louis and Eleanor have broken up (likely because she was being paid by Louis’s previous management company to be his beard) now that he has a new management company, and he is able to finally come out of the closet. Harry isn’t able to come out of the closet yet (I haven’t been able to figure out why), thus fluff pieces are being planted to cover his reputation when Louis comes out. 

Louis Tomlinson’s 369 Merchandise 

On April 28th, 2021, Louis Tomlinson released a mysterious new line of merchandise to be shipped out by May 28th. In Larry Lore, the 28th is said to be a significant number as Louis and Harry secretly married on September 28th, 2013—just so you know exactly how this goes. We can only speculate on the meaning of the 369 merch, and the Larries have some theories. 

Some products feature a figure on a ladder. A blanket (£70, though as someone who has bought two limited edition Harry Styles t-shirts, who am I to judge. I can only respect the hustle) features this figure seeming to break the glass of some sort.

Figure 7

In Walls track “copy of a copy of a copy”, the lyrics mention glass breaking:

“It’s an old curse, dreamers divin’ head first / Broken beaks and dead birds / Can’t get through the glass / There’s no use cryin’ over spilled blood / Carin’ only kills love / A kiss won’t bring it back”

The song is rumored to be about Louis being closeted, the glass representing being forced into the closet for so many years. Now Louis is showing us that he has finally “broken the glass”—whatever was restricting him, artistically and personally, is gone. 

The background of the image seems to add an additional layer of meaning. Sleuths noticed that the desert background is similar to the setting of the Walls music video—another song allegedly about being closeted. 

“All that’s left of us is a cupboard full of clothes / The day you walked away and took the higher ground / Was the day that I became the man that I am now

All that’s left of this relationship is a closet, yet he has only grown from this. Each piece of this fits together to form a coherent message that Louis is planning something big.

Truthfully, neither Louis nor Harry can do anything without the Larries speculating. This information overload seems to serve a strategic purpose in creating such a cognitive overload that whenever there is “proof” that has any bit of logic, we give in because just maybe it could be true. Right now we stand at the cusp of something great: Louis Tomlinson is going to come out as gay, and soon after Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson will finally reveal their relationship to the world. Or perhaps (even if Louis does come out as gay), two young musicians who used to be in a band together will continue to find a place for themselves as solo artists. 

As a One Direction fan, the continuing theories of Larry Stylinson are impossible to avoid, and each time I am confronted by the grotesque involvement of fans in the lives of two celebrities, exacerbated by the way we police the way men show affection.

Larry Stylinson was born by reading physical touch and closeness with exclusively romantic intentions because that is the only situation where men are allowed or expected to show physical affection. 

Maybe Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson have been in a decade-long secret relationship and are finally set to come into the public eye as a couple. Maybe two teenagers found a platonic, friendship love 10 years ago, and that relationship was not only sexualized but forcibly interpreted through the societal rules and expectations until it was either hidden from the public eye or disintegrated completely.

Either way, fans have done a great disservice to two people who have given us so much of themselves. The very least we can do in return is listen to them.  Louis explicitly says how these rumors are damaging and hurtful to him and his loved ones. Fans instead read into this as further proof of their secret relationship. 

Categories: Music