Return of the Icons
In the late 80’s many surf brands saw rapid expansion as a way forward but this road led to the demise of
By reaching out to a brand hungry market, some brands aligned themselves with department stores and lost
brand credibility as a result.
Once common brands like Golden Breed, Hot Tuna and Piping Hot fell fowl of this curse and were barren
from the beaches that built it.
Expansion brings financial risk but most surfers longed to see these iconic brands back on the
How does a brand re-connect with it’s roots, re-connect to the core values that once built it up?
Golden Breed set about rebuilding and now has stores in Noosa, Mooloolaba and Byron Bay.
In what may seen as a strange twist of fate, the original designs and styles that built Golden Breed
are now in demand as retro styles, so in effect they can reproduce the older styles as their current
Piping Hot is another brand slowly rebuilding it’s street cred after losing much of it when it aligned with Target.
This probably made economic sense but alienated it’s core market in the process, who wants to
wear it as a hardcore brand when people could buy Piping Hot at Target or Golden Breed at Lowes.
Both Piping Hot and Golden Breed are making ground again as a niche brand which suits the target
Piping Hot have built a good stable of sponsored surfers and the signing of Sally Fitzgibbons
will bring back a decent amount of cred however go to their website and click to look at products
and it takes you to Target Australia’s website.
One product missing from the Piping Hot range is the wetsuit that built the company.
As for poor Hot Tuna, it has almost disappeared but can still be purchased through Sports Direct
in the UK or on it’s E bay Page.
Many of us would love to see these brands back and stronger than ever but economics
overrides sentiment and nostalgia.