What To Wear When The Surf’s Actually Up
Surf style rules on the runways and at retail as of late. (Check back on Monday for our Summer Shopping Guide, which includes a few of our favorite surf-inspired duds.) But for all the style, there are very few pieces that can actually stand up to a session on the waves. That’s where Karen Mulligan and Jillian Demling come in. A couple of fashion-loving jocks—or sports-loving fashionistas?—the friends decided to design their new line, Pret-a-Surf, when they couldn’t find functional gear that looked suitably sophisticated. “I’m not a teenager,” Mulligan, a veteran surfer, explains simply. “I wanted to wear things to the beach that looked grown-up and cool.” Thus, the label, which has just debuted at stores including Opening Ceremony and Jeffrey and launches officially at Williamsburg’s Mollusk Surf Shop tomorrow.
“It was really vital to us to have the launch at a real surf shop,” Demling says. “I mean, the pieces are versatile, I wear them as fashion, but we went out of our way to use great, high-performance fabrics.” The debut collection includes pinup-style bikinis and maillots, microfloral board shorts, and color-block rash guards designed with both utility and vintage wave-rider chic in mind. The designers hope to expand into fashionable gear for other athletic activities, too, such as snowboarding, skiing, golf, and tennis. “Basically, our goal is to outfit any girl who plays sports and wants to look good,” Mulligan says.