Advice For Volcom’s New Parents

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Bonjour! Bienvenue! Comment êtes-vous? Je vais dire, vous êtes à la recherche si beau! Tellement belle!

I’ve been saying for years, whilst sipping various martinis, that our surf world is a bastion of luxury (whilst smoking various Gauloises). That it is high-end, exclusive, snooty, snotty. Luxurious. And earlier this week French luxury holding company PPR acquired Costa Mesa youth establishment company Volcom. The Stone!

PPR also owns personal favorites Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga and Gucci. And Volcom! The Stone! And if I may be so bold, I would like to give François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO of PPR, some advice as he embarks on this brave new venture:


Use better materials! Like fur and red satin! Nylon and cotton and neoprene are played out in the surf. They are tired. Go experimental!

Remember that surfers are trim and good looking! Cut everything, from boardshorts to jackets, trimmer and better looking. Cut the T-shirts longer and make them boat-necked and keep some bag in the chest (trim T-shirts are out!) and use better materials! Like cashmere!

Sponsor Luke Stedman!


Andrew Doheny is a canvas awaiting paint. Photo: Tom Carey


The North Shore really isn’t the proving grounds! Avenue Montaigne and that glorious Champs-Elysees are! Volcom is a fashion brand, not a hardgoods company, and we all know that scientific super trunks are simply a trend. Look toward the Balboa peninsula for design inspiration. Aim to turn heads on the catwalks. Surfers are the sexiest and surf fashion should be the sexiest too.


Nate Tyler already has color coordination down. Photo: DJ Struntz


Put every surfer you pay (espec. Bruce Irons, Nate Tyler, Parker Coffin and Andrew Doheny) in YSL and Gucci and Balenciaga (shoes) whenever they go to awards ceremonies. Send tailors and fit them properly and let them wear Volcom T-shirts (boat-necked with a little bag) underneath suit jacket or let them put dollars or Euros in Volcom wallets but that is all. For awards ceremonies.

Populate the front rows of Paris, Milan, New York fashion weeks with the surfers you pay (espec. Bruce Irons, Nate Tyler, Parker Coffin, Andrew Doheny and Alex Grey). Let even the underage drink champagne. They will be the life of each party. Give them models for their paddle-fit arms.

Surfers are the sexiest. Declare it to the world!


Mitch Coleborn accessorizes nicely with ring and hat. And mustache. Photo: Tom Carey


Les hommes qui surfent sont comme des dieux! Comme tannées dieux! —Chas Smith