Behind the Business: Solswell (+ a giveaway!)


We're back with the second installation of our Behind the Business series, this time with Solswell, an up-and-coming adventure brand that creates photography and art-inspired apparel. Much of the art and photography featured represents iconic surfing destinations, with a focus on the founders' home bases, Southern California and Hawaii.

Behind the Business with Solswell

What: The mission of Solswell is to create a unique clothing line that inspires people to discover what truly makes their soul swell – riding waves, charging mountains, taking adventures, and exploring the unknown. By featuring original photography and artwork motivated by the ocean, nature, and the importance of living life to the fullest, Solswell seeks to develop a creative, expressive, free-living brand while recognizing we must take measures to protect & sustain our environment and the ocean, to which we are all connected.

Who: Keely McCullough and Kelly Keane (pictured above)

What would you say are three keys to success for an emerging brand to get them on people’s radars and up the awareness factor around their company?

Having a strategic marketing and social media plan is super important. We’re both really into photography, so we’re constantly updating Facebook and Instagram (@solswell) with sneak peeks into our lifestyle.  We’ve also learned the value of momentum -- we need to stay motivated and keep pushing forward, and realize that the most notable companies are built on lots of hard work and generally take years to grow and prosper. Being a trend setting company is huge too. We’re working to gaining respect by being fresh and different; individuality is a very sexy thing! 

If you could describe the brand in 3 words, what would they be? 

Art. Adventure. Passion.

What do you see as the greatest opportunities for your brand? What about challenges?

We want our products to be accessible to the people who would appreciate them most.  We’re very grassroots at the moment but we want to reach those who truly live our brand and thrive on taking adventures, riding out the swells in life, and living to the fullest.   Once we’re able to connect our apparel to the right audience, the sky is the limit and we’ll be able to keep fulfilling our dream of making art, and having it featured on clothes for the world to see.  We have challenges too… Even though we started the company out of a garage in Costa Mesa and typically hold meetings in our 81 VW Bus, we are big dreamers and hope to have a large warehouse and more office space.   Another issue is having too many ideas and never enough time to bring them to fruition.  We need more hours in the day!

What is the biggest goal you are trying to reach for 2014 and beyond?

For 2014, we see Solswell on the shelves of at least a handful of local surf shops here in Newport, Costa Mesa, and South OC.  We see a vast opportunity of being a small, organic company amongst the common big-name surf brands.  Making that happen takes a lot of work.  We need to keep producing, promoting, and inspiring.  Another goal would be to keep creating!  We’re doing this for the love, which for us is art, photography, the ocean, and adventure.  So, even when we’re tied up in the administrative work or marketing, we need to make time to keep doing the things that makes our souls swell most.  
The Giveaway

The girls from Solswell are giving $30 to one lucky reader (or their guy). Take a look in their shop and let us know what you'd pick out if you win. Extra entries for mentioning the giveaway on Instagram and tagging @shortsweetblog and @solswell.

And in case you missed it, read Behind the Business with TheStylist LA here.


Cat Eyes & Skinny Jeans said...

I love their meeting location; and the graphics on these tops! I would totally go for the Racerback Supersoft Tank or a Hat!!


Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door said...

Loving this series!!

Sarah @ 702 Park Project said...

I'm actually loving the hats! Perfect for Saturday work days on the house! :)

Brittany said...

I love the Racerback Supersoft Tank!
Adorable for the summer!! Love the color.

Alicia Mackin said...

I love reading stories like this. Just wonderful we need more small businesses like this.

Allie of ALLIE NYC

Alicia Mackin said...

I love reading stories like this. Just wonderful we need more small businesses like this.

Allie of ALLIE NYC

Jillian Manesh said...

what a great shop! love their tanks. xo jillian

Jaclyn @ Love And Bellinis said...

I love the racerback supersoft tank! Such a pretty, fun color!

Rema said...

I love the Westie adventure tee! (And I loooove the company's name)

Anonymous said...

I like the Solswell Fine Jersey Tee for my husband.

Valerie said...

I like the The Jersey Blend Hoodie.

Deidre said...

I like the westy adventure tee myself!

Melissa Douglass said...

I love the racerback tank!

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