Stoked to announce that this new surfmat shirt “Inflatable Dreams” is going to be screenprinted. The illustration of the surfmat and fins tangled in the sea is a nod to these strange wave-riding craft and the rare few makers who build these by hand.
They’ve become a consuming passion for me since I started riding them, almost exclusively, about three or so years ago. No, I still don’t have a clue what I’m doing and that’s just magic. Every wave has my inner kook-grom shrieking, “…best wave ever!” to no-one in particular – either because it really was or maybe for that particular wave I transcended into the ether-body of the eternal kook-grom that lives forever in us all… Maybe both. (Kook)
The full liquorice assortment of craft for enjoying the surf and the sea in general are available as factory made (sure, many are hand-finished) kit. Why would anyone want to fork out all those extra hard-earned shekels for an alternative that has been “hand-made”or hand-shaped? I guess where you draw the line for hand-made stuff is debateable. Dubious example:
“My traditional wooden longboards are lovingly HAND-MADE…”
Says the shaper with bleeding knuckles and a weary, smile.
“Yeeeaahhh, BUT you didn’t make the wood did you?”
…vomits the troublesome troll.
Trolls will be trolls and they will continue to breed under bridges and berate billy goats who have the courage to tread their own path. Draw your wiggly line and stand behind it and remember it’s ok to rub it out and shift it if you need to – perceptions change, paradigms change.
Years back I forked out for a custom, Steve Lis template keel-finned twinny that was hand-shaped by a close friend of a friend; I paid extra for the glass fins and a heavier volan cloth. It was a thing of beauty and, well, it just felt totally different from anything I’d ridden before. Some might call it, “the vibe”. To me it just felt special.
My first surfmat wasn’t handmade. It was super fun and I still have it – it rides great! Since I now have ah… too-many surfmats this mat rarely gets a go-out. I have more fun on the others. Maybe part of the appeal is that with each one of these I got to have a conversation with the guy whose hands were the ones making the measurements, cutting out the material, meticulously welding the fabric together and finally signing his name and dating the build on the finished craft.
That’s special. Hand-made surfmats feel special. Yeah ok… perhaps it’s just the vibe. (Kook)
So that’s what these tees are celebrating – hand-made surfmats – those making them and those along for the ride.
So you don’t think I’m taking the proverbial mickey here I’ll have these printed on Earth Positive tees (I’ve no affiliation, nor am I getting any freebees for this); 100% certifiable organic cotton. These cost more but the the extra we fork out for products like this ensures there is more consideration paid to the environmental impact of production and more coin is paid to those involved in the process. Ethical fashion? We can do a bit better.