Some of my favorite features of our wood paddle boards, are the fine details that make our paddle boards so unique and the stories that go along with them. We are big about stories at Jarvis Boards. Not only do each one of us have a unique story, and each one of our customers has a unique story, but many of our suppliers also have their own story to accompany them. I think this is what makes Jarvis Boards so special. So today, I’m going to tell you the story behind the leather straps on each of our paddle boards — a feature that customers are continuously in awe of.
As I’ve mentioned before, Jarvis Boards began when I decided to quit my day job and follow my passion for craftsmanship. This was a risky decision, but it has also been one of the best life decisions I have ever made. The early days of crafting our wooden SUPs consisted of long hours inside of a tiny little garage in Austin with a small budget, and not a lot of help. I didn’t want our boards to look like all of the other paddle boards out there, I wanted them to be hand-crafted works of art that people not only loved to use, but that they were proud to look at. This is why I decided to add a leather carrying strap to them, because how much more detailed, authentic, and raw can you get than a nice crafted piece of handcrafted leather? So I set out on a mission to find someone that could supply us with these leather straps.
With our small budget, we didn’t really have the money to do a bulk order. I just needed about 20 leather straps to get me started. One call led to another, which led to another laugh from suppliers. They thought I was crazy for trying to order such a small number. Well, here at Jarvis Boards, we don’t take no for an answer. After about a million no’s, I found our hidden gem — a small family business in North Austin known as Savilino.
The folks at Savilino saw potential in our wood paddle boards and they took a chance on us. The detail they put into these leather straps is remarkable, and it kind of makes me thankful that all those other companies told me no. To keep the handles from stretching out, Savilino reinforces the two pieces of leather with a nylon strap before they are finally outfitted with stainless hardware. After a couple of uses, your leather strap will begin to take on the character of a nice worn pair of leather boots. An icon of true craftsmanship.
Mass produced goods are far too common today, and we wanted to stand out from that with our wood paddle boards. We are a small business and we love to partner with other local small businesses. To this day our leather handles on our paddle boards are still stitched and crafted by the same talented craftspeople that saw potential in us in 2012 and we couldn’t be more proud to work with them.
Born in Austin, Crafted in Austin, and we support Austin businesses.