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Meet Wes Horbatuck and Greg Orfe of Driftline in Pacific Beach / Crown Point

Today we’d like to introduce you to Wes Horbatuck and Greg Orfe.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Everything started for us about two years ago during an October surf session up at Beacons. The warm summer waters were fading as winter swells were filling in. It was basically that time of year where it was too cold for boardshorts, but too warm for a wetsuit. A lot of surfers know this feeling all too well.

We realized that these multi-season transition periods in the water are not only problematic for surfers here in San Diego, but also for wakeboarders, swimmers, kayakers, and tons of other watersport athletes both on this coast and across the globe. We tried every solution on the market, but none of them seemed to offer what we were looking for.

It was pretty much around that time when the idea for Drifties™ was born – a patent-pending inner liner made out of neoprene (wetsuit material), connected to a stylish outer boardshort shell. We designed it specifically for watersport athletes like ourselves and thought it would provide a solution for this “transitional void” in the water. It’s really evolved into something amazing too – they really offer a level of comfort, flexibility, and functionality that we never knew we needed.

It’s been an incredible feeling to solve a problem and develop a unique product, and people are really stoked on the idea. Our goal as a company is to keep innovating aquatic activewear like this, and basically redefine how people interact with the water from here on out.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
There are always going to be a few bumps in the road in a startup environment, but we do our best to adapt and overcome so we can just keep moving forward and focus on our products and our customers.

In the beginning though, the biggest hurdle was actually creating Drifties. Since we were creating a product that had never really been designed in this way before, there wasn’t anything for us to mock our idea off of. One thing we knew that we wanted was for the combination of the neoprene liner with the outer shell layer to be stylish, yet subtle. Essentially the look of a modern boardshort, with the functionality of a wetsuit. Developing this idea was easy in theory, but we had no idea how much time, detail, and craftsmanship would have to go into the actual creation of the product.

At the end of the day though, every hurdle has been this awesome learning experience for us. It’s been super fun to learn the intricacies of the apparel industry, and especially to create products for people like ourselves who just love the ocean.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Driftline – what should we know?
Driftline is an aquatic apparel brand that designs innovative activewear for watersport performance. We set ourselves apart with our flagship product, Drifties™, which are wetsuit-lined boardshorts designed specifically for aquatic athletes. Our patent-pending neoprene liner provides comfort, warmth, and chafing protection that regular boardshorts just don’t offer. And the best part about them is that they aren’t just for surfers! We’ve worn them wakeboarding, kayaking, and even swimming across La Jolla Cove. It’s this multi-sport use that’s really exciting about our primary product.

Beyond that, we’re also really proud of our eco-friendly practices in terms of our shipping and packing materials. Everything from our kraft mailers, to our hangtags, and our handwritten insert cards, are all made out of 100% post-consumer recycled material. Our kraft mailers are even re-usable via a secondary adhesive strip for resending!

We’re extremely grateful to live in a city as incredible as San Diego, and want to evangelize our brand within the local community. We’ve had so much local support already, and can’t wait to keep innovating our products for customers on this coast, and across the globe.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
We definitely have a passion for our products and our local community that drive us to make Driftline successful. We’ve designed our brand to speak directly to the residents of San Diego and the activities that we all engage in and plan to spread this idea to the rest of Southern California and hopefully other communities across the globe as well. It’s been really fulfilling for us to find that passion from within, which definitely motivates us and keeps us optimistic for the future!

Pricing:

  • Drifties™ – $110 with free shipping in our 100% post-consumer recycled Kraft Mailers

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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