Cruisy coastal lifestyle brand The Critical Slide Society (TCSS) has opened a new store and cafe on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, its second in Sydney following its launch in Bondi in 2018.
“We started off as a bunch of mates having a good time … surfing, listening to good music, capturing moments on film … and Critical Slide as a brand evolved from that,” co-founder Sam Coombes tells Broadsheet. “What we endeavour to do in our store spaces is bring our culture to the forefront. We just want people to feel at home.”
Set in one of the largest surf communities in the country, the new Mona Vale store is the latest step for the brand, whose journey began as a blog in 2009 on the Central Coast. Visiting a TCSS store, as regulars to their Bondi venue would know, is like walking into a breezy seaside hideaway. The Mona Vale fit-out continues that theme; it’s inspired by Matt Woods’s (Valentina’s, The Enmore Hotel) original Bondi design. Bright white walls are offset by light timber shelves, a line-up of colourful surfboards and bursts of foliage.
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The store showcases the entire TCSS range. It stocks the brand’s cotton-rich tees and boardies, all made from recycled materials, as well as a full collection of classic TCSS fibreglass surfboards. There’s also art on the walls by Sydney artist and good pal of the brand, Jacob Pedrana.
The Mona Vale store isn’t just for seasoned surfers. It’s also the perfect spot to have a weekend browse if you’re new to the brand.
Grab a coffee from Single O and pastries from Sonoma, post up on one of the large picnic tables on the lawn out front, and enjoy the unmistakable community vibe that TCSS has built.
As well as producing a consistent flow of quality apparel and surfwear, TCSS also works to raise money for local community organisations such as Mona Vale Boardriders.
With multiple stores in Thailand, one in China, and another in Korea, a second Aussie store was the perfect next step. A global takeover is looming, but the brand is determined to maintain its commitment to its cultural and community ethos, and sustainability practices. Its packaging is made using compostable cornstarch, it doesn’t use petrochemicals in its wetsuits, and more than 60 per cent of its T-shirts are made using re-milled cotton offcuts and leftovers.
The Critical Slide Society
44 Darley Street, Mona Vale