The Critical Slide Society has distribution across Australia, Japan and the US, and Stab magazine awarded it three “World’s Best Boardshort” titles. This is the brand’s first physical store. It represents an alternative surf or coastal scene beyond what’s reflected by Rip Curl and Billabong.
Over the years a large share of Australian surf culture’s artistic talent has come out of one company:.
Sam Coombes is a graduate of beloved Australian creative project Mambo. There Coombes met senior illustrator Jim Mitchell, and the two started The Critical Slide Society, which began as a blog but has morphed into a multidisciplinary venture that’s about clothing and product design. It works with surfers, musicians, artists and people interested in surf culture.
Although about 75 per cent of the store’s products are The Critical Slide Society’s own, you’ll also find a lot of stuff you might not find in your average surf store.
There are beach umbrellas from Gold Coast brand Business & Pleasure Co; footwear from Freedom Moses; towels from US brand Slow Tide; cushions from another ex-Mambo talent, Damian Fuller of Aloha to Zen; and vinyl by Inertia Records.
It stocks surfboards from Drag Surfboards, Joshua Keogh Surfboards, and Thomas Surfboards from Central Coast legend Thomas Bexon. Events and art shows are big part of the store too.