Founder and visual story teller, Mar Cubillos, uses clean, minimalist design to bring a breath of fresh air to the waves and the beautiful boards that ride them.
The FLKLR branding perfectly embodies the company’s design ethos from its conception to the execution of a delicious array of hand-crafted boards. Smooth, clean lines and an effortless sense of minimalism capture the simplistic nature of man, board and ocean that Mar and his team have worked so attentively to restore to this increasingly commercial industry. The folklore of surfing takes center stage as the “fish tales of mysto waves in distant lands” inspire this triumphant return to the roots of the sport.
When us regular landlocked humans think of surf, the brands that come to mind are automatically the likes of Billabong and Quicksilver. Billboard images of sun-kissed sandy scenes with couples romantically floating dreamily hand-in-hand across the Pacific conjure a falsified impression of what surfing really is, and that is what FLKLR are here to challenge. Hailing back to the 60s and 70s when surfers railed “against the commercial establishments, big brands, the ‘Man’,” FLKLR are taking the stories of these starving artists and musicians who took to the waves and “looking into the future, but allowing the past to inspire us.”
The boards are both designed and hand-crafted by Cubillos and his friend and fellow surf enthusiast, Shawn Vec. With a background in advertising, print & product design, Cubillos clearly has a keen eye for modern minimalist graphics. In keeping with the FLKLR vibe, he strives towards simplicity: “It's the simple things that are aesthetically appealing. Design is meant to solve problems and create opportunities.” This combined with Vec’s career as a pro-snowboarder for Burton and renowned board shaping skills creates a killer design duo, a collaboration that focuses on the unique experience and needs of each individual surfer.
The boards themselves are truly delectable -the website aptly instructs viewers to “take a look and lick.” Strong, bold colors contrast with bright white bodies, expertly constructed with confident modern lines that also lend a cheeky nod towards a more traditional 60s design. Offered in several styles, the choice is both plentiful and succinct, demonstrating FLKLR’s desire to create quality over quantity. Every board is handcrafted and custom made and the team are looking into using more environmentally friendly material. With a wait time of a mere 2-4 weeks, a FLKLR board could be this season’s must-have taste of the ocean. As they say themselves, “you could eat them all up.” FLKLR also offers an array of skin tight t-shirts, surf socks (made from 100% recyclable canvas) and various other sea / surf accessories to add to the FLKLR repertoire. On top of all this, they are launching a fresh magazine – “an alternative lens for the creative ocean way-finder.” With Mar’s story telling skills and the exciting goal at hand of “turning these stories of the proverbial starving artist into what we once were -- a revolution against establishments”, there is no doubt that this will make for an intriguing, relevant read: “It'll be our slingshot and stone against the boring Big Box boards.”
Having spent the last two years putting FLKLR together, Mar’s passion and love for the sport, its history and its exciting future come together in heart-felt concept and a cleverly executed design. Touching on the most important aspects of surf, the boards are carefully created to adhere to the FLKLR vision, one which we hope to see a lot more of in the future. This innovative approach to revolution is both delicate and aggressive as it does not tear down its competitors but simply glides above them on a wave of imminent success.