Monday, December 8, 2014

Craft Feature: Sole Handplanes of Ocean Beach-San Diego, California

Aloha! Tonights Craft Feature comes to us from just down the street in Ocean Beach-San Diego. The story of Sole Handplanes...where Artistry, Design, and the Love of Surf comes together with Sole. My friends of the Stoke...

Craft Feature No. 8
Sole Handplanes
Ocean Beach, San Diego 

1.Tell me a little bit about yourself? Where you are from and what company/organization are you with. 
I am an artist, designer, furniture maker and founder of Sole Handplanes, based out of Ocean Beach in San Diego. Over the past 35 years I have made my living in the arts, now with this venture I am blending my passion for surfing with my love of design and art. Sole Handplanes currently is a team of four people: Lee Puffer is our Art Director & Copywriter; Stu Wood handles business development and our online media while Eddie Storer oversees our production and product development, and of course I do all of that and a bunch of other stuff too.

We also have an amazing team of riders: @itsbetterinbronze @sk8thestateca @samlopez87 @corbin138 @dwizer, who bring a great deal to the business and an overall great vibe.

2. What Surf Craft(s) do you make/offer?

We make performance minded hand boards for body surfing, with a focus on planes made for hollow waves. Our boards take a fresh approach in terms of construction and design. They are much thinner and more concave than others on the market. This maximizes bite and lift. We also believe that the strap or binding is just as important as the plane itself, just as it is on a snowboard or pair of skis. Therefore we don’t skimp on our straps, nor how they attach.
3. When and How did you get into Surfing?

I was probably 15 or 16 before I began surfing, this was back in the mid-seventies. Prior to that I was a skate rat, hunting down pools and canals with my buddies. Surfing was just a natural progression. I did both until surfing took over. As a kid I body surfed, but really I didn’t become enamored with body surfing until about ten or 12 years ago. Now I’m about 50/50 body surfing and board surfing.
 4. What is your favorite form of Stoke (SurfCraft)? Why?
I think the older I get the more I’m enjoying bodysurfing. It’s just a more all around rewarding experience. There are still plenty of good times to be had board surfing for sure, but hassling for waves is getting less and less fun. The body surfing vibe seems to be more genuine.

 5. Any specials projects or events you'd like to share or start?

Right now we are focused on getting product into the hands of bodysurfers all over the world. We’ve got a bunch of projects in development, including limited edition collaborations with artists and a clothing and bag line. Stay tuned.

 6. Where do you see the Culture heading in the near Future?

The interest in body surfing and alternative surf craft will continue to increase. I think right now people are interested in trying something new. There is always going to be the ASP and it’s great to see the Big Wave guys starting to get their due. It’s time also for people to see the body and boogie boarders charging. But when all is said and done it’s about our relationship with the ocean and that interest will only increase.

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