Surf Style’s Up


In advertising and design, sometimes there are those projects that are just—fun. We’ve certainly had the pleasure over the years of working on many fun projects, for lots of highly energized clients. But, none that charged our collective creative energies like the one that landed on our doorstep from our friends in sunny South Florida—Surf Style.

You may know them as the chain of beachwear souvenir stores located along the Mississippi and Alabama Gulf Coasts, and both sides of the Florida peninsula. The stores are amazing, and truly a catch all for the visiting tourists in the myriad of beach towns that they call home.

But, most don’t know that the actual brand of Surf Style clothing was popularized and highly in-demand in the 1990s. A time when big, bright, bold and electric neons were all the rage. Think Will Smith, whistling for a cab and having his life “flipped turned upside”—ya know, and that whole “moving to a town called Bel-Air” thing. Poor Will.

Or, maybe you were more into Zach Morris and the gang at Bayside High School. The moral is, we all remember the acid wash, the bright colors and baggier than baggy clothing.

Turn the clock forward and a store by the name of Urban Outfitters  comes along. They’re selling the clothes of yester year at today’s marked up prices, but one item is just selling off the shelf—the Surf Style windbreaker.

So, why not reintroduce the Surf Style brand on its own, but in a way that harkens back and draws inspiration from that nostalgic era—the 90s? That was the charge, and honestly the inspiration behind the work and vision of our most recent work for SurfStyle.

The Surf Style team envisioned reintroducing the brand to a whole new generation that has proven to be hungry for nostalgic, vintage clothing. How?

We’d execute this by designing and developing Surf Style’s first foray into e-commerce—one singular online storefront, among their more than 30 brick and mortar locations.

To fill this online store, we needed photography that fit our vision. So,  we simultaneously planned and executed a four-day photoshoot, with photographer Mike Short, along the beautiful Alabama Gulf Coast. The first two days, we spent close to 10 hours each day in-studio, shooting predetermined product shots. Everything was thought about, from the props to the poses, to the flavor LaCroix offered to our team and the models.

The second two days, we packed up the uHaul trailer and headed to Gulf Shores, Ala., taking over the beaches, boardwalks, lazy rivers, putt-putt golf courses and arcades for two beautiful days. Here, we gathered and curated a collection of Lifestyle photos that fit the desired look and feel.

All of this culminated with lots of hard work and dedication in populating the new Surf Style website with content, lifestyle photos, hundreds of individual product photos, product information, sizes, pricing and descriptions.

Now, Surf Style can leverage their very own store to reintroduce and sell their iconic brand of beachwear directly to consumers.

Fore more on this project, and to see the work, click here.

  • SJE


  • Art Direction and Design – Courtney Smith
  • Photography – Mike Short of Shot by Short
  • Web Development – Will Fawcett & Jessica Wohner
  • Project Manager – Jarrod England