Fair Harbor co-founder Caroline explains the moment–and the special place–that inspired the launch of our first women’s collection.
Growing up, my life revolved around being outside—enjoying the sunshine, playing sports, and escaping to the beach during the summer. Most of the time, I felt like I couldn't sit still. I was constantly on the search for my next adventure. And Fire Island was the perfect place. I could roam free there, and my parents didn't have to keep tabs on me. I could ride my bike to Unfriendly's to buy ice cream when I wanted. Or swim in the water as I held on tight to the shore while the waves crashed overhead. I was free to run along the beach after dark, jumping off of lifeguard chairs into the cold sand.
All I needed during those summers was a bathing suit (which mainly consisted of a little faded bikini that matched my sun-kissed freckles and golden hair). I wore the same thing from sunrise fishing to sunset barbecuing without care. But as I got older, my needs changed, and I couldn't wear the same thing from running to swimming, biking, or cooking. I needed versatile pieces that felt comfortable and could transition throughout the day. Our needs change as our bodies change—and our clothing should also follow suit.
Last summer in Fair Harbor, I woke up early and roamed down to the beach. I was met by the warm sun glowing and the cool breeze wafting off of the ocean. I walked through the sand, still cool from the night before, and noted the morning beach's glorious way of awakening my senses. After a light jog along the shoreline, I laid down in the sand for some exercises, sat up for a few deep breaths, and stood up for final stretches. I was covered in sand and ready for a dip.
As a kid, I would have been my little bikini already, but a little bikini would not have been enough as I've gotten older. So I sprinted into the brisk waters of the early summer Atlantic wearing just a sports bra and athletic shorts. As I walked out of the ocean, sitting back onto the sand, I realized that my sports bra and shorts were sopping wet, and I would need to head back to the house to change soon. Then, I saw my mom and Maverick (our Bernese Mountain Dog, who's hard to miss on the beach) emerging from the stairs. My mom was wearing dark leggings and a flowy tank top, and I was in my sopping wet old sports apparel.
As I sat on the beach that morning, I knew it was the perfect time to expand into women's. Fair Harbor had been designing shorts for men to wear all day long, and now it was time to create feminine, functional, and fun products for women of all ages. I wanted these pieces to help women feel confident and comfortable while providing ease at the beach and throughout the day. Staying true to our core ethos, I also wanted this collection to be made from recycled materials to help protect the places we all love for the future. And our new women's collection has accomplished all of this.
While the idea for our first women's line may have been sparked on the beach that morning just a year ago, it was inspired by years of happiness and freedom in Fair Harbor.