Born and raised in Southern California, I grew up with a love of the beach and a love of T-shirts. In my pre-internet youth, I got my T-shirt fix at two places: the Balboa Beach Company in Newport Beach and Billy’s Ski & Surf in Montrose. Sadly, neither store survived, nor did my vast collection of 80’s surf apparel—but my love of beach and tees did!
Before moving to the South Strand in 2013, my wife and I visited Surfside Beach—and went shopping for some local T-shirts to take home for the family. But despite the ubiquity of big-box beach stores, and the unfathomably low prices at which they hawk their tees, I couldn't find a single shirt I'd actually wear. Does that make me a T-shirt snob? Of course, but why should that matter? Shouldn't those who care about quality and design be able to buy T-shirts on the Grand Strand too?! I think so, which is why I started the Surfside Beach Company.
Founded in 2016, the idea at the beginning was to simply offer premium Surfside Beach T-shirts to visitors (and locals!) who value quality over quantity. Not everyone, after all, is enamored with low-grade T-shirts of poor design and questionable origin (just because you can get three for $10)! It didn't take long, though, for our target audience to expand.
Just prior to selling shirts at the Surfside Beach Family Festival, we learned that the Town of Surfside Beach maintains an exclusive right to sell Surfside Beach T-shirts at the events it sponsors. That was unexpected, but when life gives you lemons, you make... Garden City shirts. From there I realized that virtually all of the communities that make up the Grand Strand suffered the same tragic shortage of high quality tees. Designs for Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, North Myrtle Beach and Pawleys Island ensued—and our #SBCo branded tees quickly became our best-sellers. Since then, I've added regional tees for some of the surf-side locales that meant so much to me growing up.
All that to say, the Surfside Beach Company has already evolved into something much more than I expected. And here's another cool thing. There's a Surfside Beach in Texas, and another in Florida. And one in California and Maine. Plus two more in Massachusetts. And when you really think about it, whenever you're at the beach—no matter where in the world you are—guess what? You're surf side; and that's worth celebrating!
Read more of our story on: South Carolina Voyager
And more still on: Canvas Rebel