Bryan House is a San Diego surfer/skater/designer who is widely recognized for being the f@cking man. He gave us a behind the scenes look at the Sanuk operation, and the secrets behind their not so typical footwear empire. We skated, ping ponged, ate Wahoos, drank Pacificos, and heckled…
How’d you get your start in the Sanuk Footwear family?
I got thrown into the mix randomly by JK, he straight up invited me to check out the building and grab a pair of shoes. The next thing I know I am in a conference room talking about factories, footwear construction and materials. I had no resume, no portfolio just a computer with things I had been working on. Soooo caught off guard, but looks like it worked! JK is the man, I owe it all to him.
Sounds like Jeff Kelly (above) is a rad guy to work for. Whats the most important lesson he’s taught you?
Swing for the Fences and never settle. Stay positive and make the best out of every situation by trying to have fun. Looks like it worked for him.
How do you continue to design footwear so different than any other shoes out there?
I think that just staying conscious of all avenues: fashion, street, skate, music, surf, sports, art or whatever. I have so much A.D.D that the more things I have to absorb the more I can get weird with. I am very fortunate that we are “delightfully flawed” here at Sanuk!
Describe each shoe you’re showing us here as a Car.
-The VAGABOND would definitely be a straight up old school RV from the mid 80’s with the truck front
-The CHIBA is a bit more detailed, its paneling even looks similar to artwork on them! but would still be and RV from the 90’s that are more bus like front end
-The PICK POCKET would be one of them decked out full size Touring Vans that I would love to own one day and cruise up and down the California coast, way more streamlined
-The DREWBY reminds me of that old school convertible Aston Martin or Jaguar for some reason, clean and classic. More than likely see them at opening day at the track for the del mar races.
-The ROUNDER would be like a Westfalia, still old school but realistic for everyday life but you can still crunch out and camp if you’re ready to break out of town
-The LEVEE would be like that mid 90’s longer convertible Porsche that you would see in Miami, I think the espadrille wrap takes me to that frame of mind
-The CASSIUS would be flat black 67 Mustang, I just love those cars and I love this shoe so lets just combine forces and call it a day!
How do you come up with the rad product names?
Its pretty epic. First we get as many employee’s as possible in one room. Then everyone starts blurting out the most outlandish, sometimes extremely inappropriate stuff until people are red in the face laughing and eventually make it usable. Super fun.
You’ve come a long way in terms of product design and comfort, what’s the secret to the kush comfort in the new Shoes by Sanukt he Cassius?
Well that’s like giving away your own secret recipe holmes! You know I can’t be doing that! Lets just say we give every pair of shoes double the love when building them.
Biggest challenge in product m&d?
Prices and minimums. I hate those words more than anything..
What’s the story with astro turf everywhere? Is it like an ode to Donny’s Mustache
Please tell me that you were able to incorporate something from your ink in one of your product designs?
Hahahahahah, It finally happened for Spring 15 in the HIGHRISE. I used a “House” tattoo that my homie did for me on the back of my leg when I was like 20. I made it a repeat pattern, stoked! I showed JK today and he started Laughing. Lets hope it stays in the line!
What the best idea that you’ve ever spawned during your commute up from Cardiff to Irvine?
Andrew Walker (Sanuk Jr. Designer) and I have had more ideas than I can even think of. We just put our heads in the clouds with all sorts of music… loud. Drewby aka “Walkie Talkie” (@walkie_talkie) is a super talented musician, so we listen to tons of his new stuff all the time. We pretty much just get weird and throw ideas out.
Who runs the ping pong table at Sanuk?
It can go in waves, but I think over all I got the most wins.. It’s usually the likes of Tyler Pinkos, Tommy Campagne, Jake Brandman (Sanuk President) and Boothy. We straight up battle, yell, scream and you either go back to your desk bitter or you do a victory lap and celebrate around the office. Lets just say I do a lot of victory laps…
Who would you completely nerd out on if they wore your shoes?
THREE6MAFIA would be pretty dope, been a fan of there’s for a long time. Rick Rubin has been seen in Sanuks’ and that was pretty sick to see.
Next surf trip?
Not soon enough.. Hopefully Bali with my Fiancé’ Jade, her pops lives there so it’d be cool to see his spot and get barreled and find some ramps. If there was something sooner I’d do a quick mainland mex trip, which is close and cheap through my buddy TJ.
Gotta shout out to my Beautiful Fiance Jade. My Family & Friends. My Extended Fam @SanukFootwear, there is so many amazing people there! Trisha Hegg (AKA-MamaBear), Thank you!? The Crew that keeps the dream alive: DC@SK8MAFIA, PREEBZ@JSLV, EVERYONE@RUSTY SURFBOARDS & RUSTY DEL MAR, THE STODDARD BROTHERS@BRIXTION, @STANCESOCKS, JS@SAXX, COUNG@TUMYETO, TRANSWORLD SKATE, STRATFORD CT MUSIC, COOP@SKULLCANDY & EVERYONE that has looked out! Muchas Maholas to Nolan Plan and Tommy Campagne for lining this up.
THANK YOU ALL AND MUCH LOVE!
Snag a limited edition Sanuk Shoots Trucker with a purchase of Bryan’s latest creation The Cassius!, the Cassius
More shots from the SWELL Day with B.House
Lunch Break at the Etnies Skatepark Down the Road
Post-Skate Grinds at Wahoos
More Office Swag
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