Hailing from the colder climate of New Zealand, we at Salt Gypsy are used to suiting up in full-length neoprene pretty much year-round (although I`m the first to admit I`m a cold-water-wuss!). So when we came across Velvet Dreams we were absolutely chomping at the bit to procure one of these super-rad neoprene pieces. Oh how I wish these were around in my formative surf years at home! The thought of throwing myself into the wild shores of our West Coast would have been so much more appealing in a bright, stripey vest with a bit of neon pop. Gone are the days of the all-black wetsuit and we present to you fine salt gypsies a snippet of the man behind this Japanese brand, Takaaki-san…
First off, how are the waves in the Tokyo region today?? If you go an hour to the south shore of Tokyo, you`ll get to this beach called Shonan. There the waves are not so big usually, but when a typhoon passes by or it gets low pressure, there are really nice and great waves! Also, if you go to the east, about 1.5 hours from Tokyo, you`ll get to this beach called Chiba and there are many good points to surf! Lastly, there`s this place in the north-east of Tokyo called Ibaragi, that in the summer is one of the best places to go and get some beach breaks offshore. It`s really nice!!
Living in Tokyo, do you get to surf much? When the waves are nice during the week people usually go early morning and come back before lunch to work. But on the weekend, we all gather together and go spend the whole day at the beach!
What is your design inspiration? Since I was a teenager I used to go to LA a lot. So I get really influence by all the experiences I had there. Also, me and some good friend we do the direction of Dirty Rubbers of Brothers Marshall and I get lots of inspiration from them.
Anything else we need to know about Velvet Dreams? Our wetsuit is not about those who can or can`t surf but it is about if you can enjoy the time you`re with your friends catching some waves, or just have fun while you`re at the beach. Also I imagine and hope that the person that wears our suits can just have a smile their faces while they`re catching the waves and purely enjoy it!
Like what you see?? You can purchase directly from the Velvet Dreams site.
The crew at Velvet Dreams also make suits for guys and you are able to custom order your own piece of Japanese radness.
*All photographs provided by Takaaki Kaneko.