Monday, January 16, 2012

What Whalebone is "Trending" This Spring!

 Clothing trends is a common discussion topic in Whalebone.  What's hot, what's not and what is always "in".  No matter how many sportswear lines I have seen this season, there were several trends that inherently make into every collection.  

Having always been an avid reader of high-fashion mags such a Vogue, Nylon, and InStyle to name a few, I never thought that seasonal trends would be just as prevalent  in the forefront in the surf industry and I was seriously mistaken. While the typical customer that's shops at Gucci and the girl who lives in Billabong may be two very different women, the trends they love and look for in the clothes they wear are very much the same.  This season there five trends that I cannot get enough of and all of the trends are very much present in each Whalebone Surf Shop location.

Trend 1: P. O. C  (POP OF COLOR)

I would like to give a shout out to Brad Goreski for spelling that one out for me.  For those of you who are not addicted to the BRAVO Network, he is styling powerhouse Rachel Zoe's former styling assistant.   The concept behind throwing in a pop of color is simple.  Incorporate color in your wardrobe every day in both blatant and suddle ways.  Whether it be a sock in a neon hue or a bold denim choice, color is necessary.  We have lots of brights for Spring in both swimwear and sportswear.  I do not think our lady shoppers have as much difficulty with this trend, for the fellas I recommend something easy like a pair of Stance socks.  Socks are necessity so make them fun!

2. The Year of the Monokini

One pieces are finally not just fashionable but functional, well sort of functional.  One pieces were in almost every line for Spring.  L*Space, Vitamin A, Billabong and Volcom all did beautiful monokinis that we will carry in Whalebone.  They look great one the beach, by the pool or even paired with your favorite pair of cut-offs.  One of my personal favorites is the "Stardust" one piece by L*Space.  Billabong also did a wonderful swimsuit called the "Alessa" that we will carry for Spring.  Check out the "Alessa" pictured below. 

3. Flora and Fauna Tropical Prints

Think hawaiian print but for the fashion girl, if that is not an oxymoron already.  While the typically cheesy idea of the tropical print on shirts and dresses has been considered passe by the more hip and youthful crowd, this year heavy hitters such as Billabong and O'Neill are turning out their updates to the classic look on everything from swimwear, dresses to accessories.  In the most recent issue of Nylon magazine, they devoted an entire feature to the trend.   I am loving this Billabong tube dress pictured below.

4.  70's Chic

I like to think of this trend as a mix of  Dazed and Confused meets the Coachella music festival. In my eyes Boho is always in and if you walk in Whalebone this is one trend you will see on multiple racks.  Everywhere I turn I see FRINGE, FRINGE and more FRINGE.  It's on the L*Space "Audrey" halter top. Its on the Billabong Oracle Fox meshed cardigan.  It is hanging the the crocheted tanks and ponchos hanging in the Whalebone Urban Surf window.  Spring will be filled with calf-length skirts and dresses.  It will be filled with tie-dye over-sized tanks and peasant dresses.  It looks like the 70's are here to stay people and if you have not jumped on the bandwagon yet, you probably should.   The "How Bizarre" calf-length skirt by O'Neill is one of my favorite 70's inspired pieces that Whalebone will be featuring this spring.  I also love the "Skirtskee" tie-dyes maxi skirt by Billabong.  It is already hanging in my closet!

Last but not least....


I cannot begin to stress enough how much I absolutely love to layer.  Open any magazine or ask any trend forecaster and they would agree.  Throw on a cropped tank by Posso for Volcom with a black bralette and BAM, layering made easy.  The "bralette" is the new "bandeau".  I like to pair brightly hued bralettes with a sheer tank or blouse for an edgy day-to-night look.  Layering is an easy, accessible and most of all affordable trend for anyone to try.  Stop by your local Whalebone and let any of our resident fashionistas help you find that perfect layered look!

Keep trending my friends.  Looking good never goes out of style!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

My 1st Trip to Surf Expo

When I found out I was going to Surf Expo in Orlando, Florida  for the first time, I was literally beaming with excitement.  Being the fashion nut that I am the thought of getting to look at numerous sportswear and swimwear lines for 3 days was my idea of heaven. 

Convention Center in Orlando

We sped to the Expo straight from airplane and started things off with swimwear.  I consider our Raleigh location to be a swimwear "mecca" of sorts, being that are really not very many places other than department stores wear you can purchase swimwear.  We looked at many lines.  We saw all of the newest, most trendy for styles for Spring '12, and I must say that I liked what I saw.  Bright colors and rich prints were dominate.  L*Space by Monica Wise was amazing as usual.  Her famous fringe bandeau's are back in full force and I personally could not be more thrilled.  The color pallet this season in amazing! There is even a new variation of the fringe bandeau.  I won't give too much much away though.  Have to keep you all guessing!  I also loved Vitamin A and Carve Designs.

I found Surf Expo to be a sensory overload for me.  The convention center in Orlando was so large, I felt like there was no way one person could see everything in three days.  There were indoor scuba diving tanks, pools for SUP demos and even a makeshift demo area for wake boarders to show off their best jumps.  Load music and girls in teeny bikinis seemed to be everywhere we turned.  There were people riding on crazy contraptions resembling unicycles and zooming around on over-sized skateboards.  At times I wished my head was on a swivel so I could constantly see everything. 

Indoor SUP Demos!

While ladies swimwear was a the major focus of the trip, we were able to peruse some ladies sportswear as well.  Quiksilver, Element and Lucy Love were just a few of the favorites.  Looks like Spring '12 is bringing bold prints, flowy fabrics and high-waisted everything.  Ladies Quiksilver was amazing as was Element!  Lots to get stoked about.

Don't even get me started with the men's side of things.  We will not disappoint with our selection of men's baggies and sportswear.  I took a glance at some of the men's booth's at Expo and there is much for the men to look forward to. The new innovations with board shorts are beyond impressive and I cannot wait to see what our customers think about the designs this Spring.  Lots of great merchandising ideas to boot! 

The Expo was a great experience that was creatively inspiring.  It is a great way to swap stories with peers, get merchandising ideas and just hob nob with other people in the surf industry.  If there is one thing I am positive about it is that Whalebone Urban Surf, as well as our other two locations in Nags Head and Virginia Beach, will be stocked to the brim with the best, most innovative inventory this Spring.  Until then, stop by any of our stores to grab some great Fall and Winter merchandise.

For more information about the next expo visit

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Employee Spotlight:  DJ Joyner

Raleigh has a new surfer in town and he goes by the name DJ.  DJ hails from Virginia Beach, where Whalebone coincidentally has another store.  DJ has grown up on surfing and worked in the industry for a while.  We are stoked to have him as the newest member of the team.  He has a quirky sense of humor and eclectic style that makes him an ideal fixture for the shop.  I had the pleasure of getting to know him today and you can read the interview below.

Name:  DJ Joyner

Hometown: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Longboard or shortboard:

DJ:  Longboard

What board(s) are you riding right now?

DJ:  Right now I am riding a 9'6 Chris Christensen Westsider and a 5'4 Bing Dharma.

What is you're favorite local surf spot?

DJ:  Probably anywhere in the Buxton or Frisco area.

What made you want to work at Whalebone?

DJ:  I bought my first surfboard from Jim in the Nags Head shop when I was nine years old.  It just made sense.

What is the number one item on you're Whalebone wish list?

DJ:  Definitely the 9'6 Jacobs 422 Noserider.

When did you first start surfing?

DJ:  I first started surfing when I was five years old.  My dad took me out at milepost 12 in Kitty Hawk.

Where would you go on you're dream surf trip?

DJ:  I would take the "Wet Boys" surf team and go down to Noosa, Australia.

Favorite Surf Brand?

DJ: Insight

Favorite Longboarder Surfer?

DJ:  Well I have a couple.  Alex Knost, Joel Tudor and Scotty Stopnik.

Favorite Surf Video?

DJ:  Lost Across America and growing up I loved anything with Corey Lopez.  A current video I like a lot is Rip, Shred, Tear.

Kelly Slater or Andy Irons?

DJ:  Patrick Swayze

Paper or Plastic?

DJ:  Paper.

Tupac or Biggie?

DJ:  Biggie.

Beef or Chicken?

DJ:  Beef.

Favorite Movie?

DJ:  Princess Bride.

Stop by the shop and meet the newest member of the fam!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Employee Spotlight: Jordan Worthen

Whalebone Urban Surf is excited introduce the newest member of the Raleigh team. Her name is Jordan Worthen and we could not be more happy to have her as part of the Whalebone family.  Read below for more information about our newest team member!

Name:  Jordan Worthen

Education: Currently a Junior at Broughton High School in Raleigh

College of Choice:  Catawba

Favorite Subject:  Biology

Extracurricular Activities:  Plays soccer for Broughton High as well as a club team.

What would you like to be when you grow up?:  I want to be a doctoe without borders and travel to third world countries and help sick people in need.

Favorite Beach:  Holden Beach

If you could go anywhere in the world for FREE, where would you go?:  I would love to go to Bora Bora!

Why do you like working at Whalebone?:  It just seems like a great place to work!  Also, I love all of the cute clothes!

What is your favorite surf brand that Whalebone carries?:  I love Billabong!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Nothing Better than a Great Flannel

When I think of classic American style for some reason flannel always comes to mind.  There is something so comfortable and familiar about a great flannel shirt.  My first exposure to flannel came when I moved to Vail, Colorado, where I lived for two years.  I rarely went more than five minutes without seeing someone where a flannel button down.  Guys. girls, and children alike were seemingly obsessed with flannel.  My hasty observations caused me to quickly jump on the flannel bandwagon and I have been on it ever since.  Flannel is a huge part of surf culture and it is something that Whalebone has and always will do very well. I personally think EVERYONE should have at least one flannel shirt in their closets.  Dress it up or dress it down. Wear it with jeans. Wear it with khakis. Wear it over-sized with a belt and leggings. Wear it open over a dress with some ankle boots. Wear it with a blazer and trouser jeans. Wear it on a lazy Sunday when you are lounging on the couch. Wear it snowboarding. Wear it after the best surf session of your life.  Honestly I cannot think of any daily situation when wearing a flannel shirt, or any variation of the former, would not be appropriate.

Billabong "Stormy" Flannel.  $44.50

Flannel shirts are not just for men anymore either.  Many lines are coming out with their own unique take on the flannel shirt for the female customer.  Whether it is a flannel dress or an open front flannel cardigan, these brands know how to make flannel make sense while still be fashionable for the female shoppers out there. You better believe that this Fall you will find me strutting around Whalebone in a Billabong flannel with some skinny jeans and riding boots.  It is my go to look for Fall and it should be yours too!  Roxy makes an amazing flannel and they usually have really fun colors and styles.  I am loving Billabong's "Stormy Flannel" because it gives you the option to roll up and fasten the sleeves.  Quiksilver Girl has come out with probably my favorite flannel of the season.  The Quiksilver "Captain Flannel" has the perfect color combination and blue trim details makes for a unique look.

Quiksilver Girl "Captain Flannel".  $49.50

My absolute favorite way to wear a flannel is over-sized and accessorize it up.  Mary-Kate Olsen is sporting a look I love below in her flannel.

Ask yourself this question.  How do you like to wear your flannel? 

Think about it and let Whalebone know.  I am positive we have the perfect flannel for you.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Confessions of a Denim Snob....

My mom bought me my first pair of designer jeans when I was fifteen years old.  I remember she took me to Nordstrom and she let me pick any pair I wanted.  For me, it felt like a rite of passage.  Most girls my age dreamed of a new car, instead I was dreaming of perfectly stitched premium denim that fit like a glove.  They were a perfectly dyed pair of A-Pocket jeans by 7 For All Mankind.  My first taste of designer denim ruined me and ever since then I have spend an absurd amount of money on high end denim from brands including Paige, Citizen of Humanity, True Religion, J Brand and Joe's Jeans amongst others. I have always been attracted to the fit of these jeans, and no matter how amazing that fit is, I can no longer justify spending $200 on a pair of jeans.

Regardless of who you are or what you like to spend on denim, I have quickly realized through my many hours at Whalebone that everyone is seemingly always on the hunt for that "perfect" pair of jeans.  It is an elusive hunt for many to find the perfect combination of fit and price, especially in the current economy.

After personally trying on numerous pairs of jeans from the various surf brands that we carry, I realized that many of the styles we have a phenomenal fit and a high-end look that I seem to always be reaching for with designer denim.  My overall favorite jean we carry is Quiksilver's "Lorne Skinny Jean".  They have a 11 inch leg opening that make for a comfortable fit and they do not sit too low either.  They have a high-end hanger appeal without the high-end price tag at $78.

Some of my other favorites are:

  • Roxy "Skinny Slides" Jean.  $59.50

  • Element "Magic Sleeve" Straight Leg Jean.  $69.50.

  • Quiksilver "Shipley Straight" Jean.  $59.50.

Ladies and Gentleman, remember Whalebone the next time you are shopping for jeans.  We have a huge selection and our amazing sales staff is dedicated to finding you the perfect pair!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things...

"My Favorite Things,"
Rodgers and Hammerstein
From The Sound of Music

I am and always have been the kind of shopper and self-proclaimed "clothes junkie"  who begins to plan the wardrobe for the next season when she is still in the current season.  I like to prepare and plot out a very calculated attack on my wardrobe in regards to what is essential to have and what I can do without.  This Summer's miserable heat wave has been no match for my desire to cultivate my Fall wardrobe  early.  When most females have been thinking about swimsuits and sundresses, I have been dreaming of chunky knits and military inspired jackets.  I am absolutely, positively crazy for clothes and anyone who knows me, or works with me in the shop, can attest to that.  I may or may not have danced a jig recently when our FedEx driver Badr brought our delivery of Quiksilver Girl Fall.  I was born this way, I honestly cannot help it.

My passion for styling and fashion is something that truly inspires me everyday and I love to share it with others, which is why I have developed a list of five trends for Fall that I feel every woman, fashion obsessed or not, should be aware of and if possible include these pieces in their wardrobes!  All of the items shown below can be purchased at Whalebone Urban Surf!

1.  Military-Inspired Jacket

I absolutely LOVE the Retro Wave Parka by Quiksilver for $99.50.  Perfect paired with a feminine dress and combat boots.  It is a perfect piece if you want to mix a more edgy, masculine look with something more delicate or feminine like a flowy dress or blouse.

2.  Classic Denim Shirt

The Quiksilver Third Bay for $59.50 is pure perfection paired with a bohemian dress or even a skinny jean.  Nothing says casual chic more than a denim shirt.  It is easy to wear, practical and most of all timeless.  This shirt will stay in your closet for years.

3. Boyfriend Cardigan

Quiksilver Girl's Blanket Boyfriend Cardigan, $64.50,  is a necessity this Fall.  It has a wonderful over-sized fit, that looks great paired with a skinny pant and some fun flat boots.  The stripes make it fun and flirty at the same time.

4. Anything and Everything FLORAL

Volcom's floral printed V.Co-Logical Tank for $32 is the perfect transitional tank for Fall.  Great worn under a cardigan or even worn alone with a bandeau underneath.  The muted colors make this floral under stated, thus still staying edgy!

5. Blanket Sweater

Everyone seems to be making a cozy blanket sweater this year.  I have to say that Billabong's take on the sweater is my personal favorite.  The Love Letter open front sweater, $79.50,  with yarn detail is super comfy and great worn with a V-Neck tank and some jeans.

Those 5 items are just some of the many things that I think are vital to have in your wardrobe this Fall.  Whether you are a freak of fashion nature like myself, or you just want clothes that are accessible and wearable, remember that dressing is a way of life, so have fun with it!  Whalebone Urban Surf as well as our other locations in Nags Head and Virginia Beach are ready to have fun with you!

Stay chic always,