Surf flags came about in the early 20th century when surfers sought a visual language to communicate in the waves. These flags, often adorned with vibrant colours and unique symbols, became iconic representations of surf identity. The tradition gained momentum in the 1950s and 1960s with the rise of surf clubs and competitions. Surfers began to display personalised flags on their boards, signaling allegiance to a particular group or showcasing individual flair. The flags served not only as markers of identity but also as functional tools for communication in the ocean.
As surfing spread globally, so did the popularity of surf flag memorabilia. Collectors started preserving vintage flags, recognizing them as artifacts of a bygone era. The designs became a canvas for artistic expression, reflecting the diverse styles and influences within the surfing community. In recent decades, surf flag memorabilia has evolved beyond the beach and into keepsakes that remind their owners of their favourite places or trips.
The finest flags we’ve had our hands on are those from Slightly Choppy who, from their studio in Newport Beach, California, create timeless keepsakes by hand, that are reminiscent of good time on the coast.