When we started Chasing Tides, our plan was to help inspire people to get out and pursue their passions in the outdoors. Along the way, our hope was to showcase brands that not only created products to aid in the pursuit of outdoor activity, but embodied the spirit of exploration and taking the road less traveled. Faro Board Bags is one brand that checks all of the boxes.
The brainchild of Jack Ventura, Faro Board Bags are responsibly sourced, handcrafted surfboard bags designed to help people get off the beaten path, live simply, and minimize their footprint along the way.
"Our mission is to create simple, sustainable, timeless products for the mindful and adventurous. Putting people and the planet ahead of profit is at the core of everything we do."
He continued, “Our surfboard bags have a simple design, they are meant to stand the test of time, and by purchasing one you are directly contributing to a better environmental future through the nonprofits we give back to. Most importantly, they are made for adventure both physically and beyond the physical sense.”
Faro Board Bags uses responsibly sourced hemp canvas to handcraft their rugged, durable, and timeless surfboard bags. Echoing the sentiment of built to last, Faro only sources materials from farms that operate both sustainably and ethically.
Jack stated, “The farms we source from are operating sustainably and ethically and documenting their entire process along the way. Working with transparent companies has been non-negotiable for us!"
After having gotten our mitts on these bags, we can say that Faro’s board bags practice what they preach. From the timeless colors to the pure durability, these bags will get you where you need to go and keep your surfboard protected along the way.
One thing that shocked us was the breathability of the bags and lack of heat transfer. Spending a lot of time in the North Carolina heat, we are used to having our wax melt off in our board bags. Jack’s bags seemingly prevent that issue.
As our conversation progressed, we kept thinking back to the aspiration of creating a product that inspires adventure. Jack’s idea of taking the road less traveled doesn’t necessarily mean too far off places. Somewhere close around the corner could subtly conceal an adventure you never thought was lying in wait.
“You don’t have to travel far outside your zip code,” he said. Continuing, “sometimes a secluded beach that's only a five minute hike away from the crowds can hold waves that you never knew existed in your hometown.“
This is precisely the ethos of Chasing Tides. In the social media age, it may seem like you need to do the obvious/perfect thing, but sometimes straying away from the crowd and searching down the beach a bit can turn in a satisfying reward.
Growing up in New York, spending his time between Brooklyn and eastern Long Island, Jack learned early on that adventure doesn’t require driving or flying hundreds or thousands of miles.
“It was this mix of lifestyles, knowing both the hustle and bustle of a place like NYC and the laid back beach vibes of an eastern Long Island town that led me to seek adventure,” Jack explained.
“The summers in Brooklyn were spent on the shores of Rockaway and later in my life, Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter were all spent on the beach, exploring the shores between Long-Beach and Montauk.”
Being able to experience such diverse landscapes and resources in a relatively small radius, proved to fuel the adventure to explore what could be around the next bend, with surfing as his vehicle.
A purposeful idea, intently sprinkled with a little bit of gusto is how most businesses begin. But there’s more to building a successful business than simply having a concept and exerting some effort.
Jack told us, “Starting any business is demanding, and starting a sustainable product based business comes with additional unique challenges. I've had to learn skills that I hope will contribute to changing an industry where sustainability is talked about a lot, but not always acted on.”
Jack’s biggest challenge is sourcing eco-friendly materials at a competitive price. As a young company going against the “industry standard,” it hasn’t been easy to find eager sourcing partners. Time and money are top commodities, and investing them in a new business is risky.
We learned quickly that Jack is an optimist; it’s one of the traits we’ve appreciated most about getting to know him. He said, “This challenge has really been a blessing though; you are forced to really learn the entire process of your supply chain.”
See, this is the thing about Faro, it’s a direct representation of Jack’s core values. He could have easily pivoted to cheaper, less quality, more easily sourced materials when he met resistance - but he wasn’t willing to stray from his intentions.
We think this quote appropriately aligns his principles with his business acumen.
“Taking the road less traveled will always teach you something: be it not to go down a particular road again or to keep visiting, exploring and seeing where that unexplored path may lead you. Lessons are learned in your everyday adventures so why not always adventure where not many people have been and learn lessons not many people have learned.”
We asked Jack what his advice for aspiring entrepreneurs would be, to which he replied, “Challenges will come up but will feel more like rewarding opportunities to grow when what you do feels more like play than work. If you have an idea, go for it, it may not work out but you will learn some skills along the way.”
Jack encourages others to find what they're passionate about, and figure out how to turn it into a business. What looks like work to others, but feels like play to you, will probably lead you to success.
While the majority of his time is currently dedicated to operating Faro, Jack still finds time to pursue new passions. Recently, he discovered a love for shaping and glassing surfboards. We know a little bit about building our own surfboards, and we have to agree with Jack, it’s an addicting art. (Check out our feature with Nick Halleran of Make And Ride Surf Exchange)
Jack Ventura is an inspiring dude, and we’re grateful for having the opportunity to meet and learn from him. Authenticity is an attribute we aspire to find, and Faro Board Bags is a company shelling it out in spades.
In Jack’s words, “As someone who doesn't buy many things it seemed only right to make a product that would stand the test of time and back that product with a brand that aims to be around for the long haul. We are acting on our definition of sustainability by utilizing materials that last longer than it takes for Mother Earth to replenish them.”
With each sale, the company gives back to the individuals and organizations that are protecting the places Faro’s products are designed to take their customers. By doing so, Jack hopes to create an enduring social, environmental, and economical impact.
Faro Board Bags are for the mindful and adventurous - for the thoughtful, and intrepid folks seeking everyday adventure, every day.
Check out our Faro Board Bags gallery below. Hear more about the company from Jack at the Along the Keel Podcast here.