Huntington Beach Shoporama

We visited three of the big surf/skate emporiums in Huntington Beach and Costa Mesa:

Jacks and Jack Girls
Pacific Coast Highway
Huntington Beach, CA
Racks of discounted clothes on the street. Every shape and size from tees to snow gear. They had a stack of snowboards discounted for Christmas with boxes of boots and bindings. We found K an Obey tee for significantly lower money than we had seen. Cool bin of belts, socks, hats. The aesthetic is jumble. So, dive in.

Huntington Beach Surf and Sport
300 Pacific Coast Highway
Huntington Beach CA
Hurley also has the racks on the street from board shorts to little dresses for the girls. More brands, more of a mix. There were shoes and sweatshirts and even shirts with collars. Inside were boutiques chock a block with a range of lifestyle things through serious stuff like wet suits, surf boards, skateboards, longboards,

233 East 17th Street
Costa Mesa CA 92627
Not presenting the discount look on the street. Not within eyeshot of the beach. However, the most comprehensive and orderly way to see surf and skate gear and clothing in a universal way. Very much the Neiman Marcus of the the three.


--There is a role for illustration in this cool market. Lots of illustration and lots of types too. You don't have to be goth or vectorized, but a graphic style, a linear illustration style, wood-cuts. The skateboards are the place to see the breadth and depth there.

--Fascinating to see a broad sweep of the brands in each sport. Rare to see a skate company creep into snow and vice versa.

--Color in the skate world is minimal. Black, white, grey, taupe. Patterns. Pattern upon patterns. Mainly knits, tees, hoodies, belts and hats for the boys. Girls have the wider reach with cloth jackets, skirts, pants and accessories. Girls as drab as the boys in the skate brands. The boards are the color in this equation.

--Logo and custom buttons and logo badges, zipper pulls are where the difference is to be had.

--Color and humor pokes out a bit more with the snow clothing. Lots of green, tone on tone (black and brown), white--with patterns that are illustration based, collage based, twists on photography (my favorite being a reversed image of dice). However, the boards are decorative and interesting (skulls showing up there too) but more laid back re color. My absolute take home favorite were these "old school" snowboards which were wood with inlay looking like a combination of early surfboards or wooden motorboats of the fifites. Really cool and elegant. We need to take note of this shift. This is original stuff. There were lots of guys using the "old school" phrase when describing what it was that they were looking for. Interesting. I love the idea of real materials beginning to poke into such an invented, brand-y world that the absence of brand is the ultimate chic. To that, embroidery and heavy embroidery is throughout the girls lines...equally as real as the wood.

More later>>