As South African skateboard-ramp builder Dave de Witt so rightly points out, necessity is the mother of sweet invention. When de Witt found himself too broke to replace his equally broken sunnies, he set about making a pair from the first thing he had to hand – a board that had seen better days. From these industrious beginnings grew a cottage industry known as SK8 Shades – stylish sunnies born of salvagable skateboards. Despite skateboards and sunnies being the most relaxed items this side of a Happy Highs shop, the process from board to shade is no beginners’-roll-through-the-park.
To quote the man himself, boards are “ripped, cross-cut, planed, cross-cut again, laminated, cured, cut into veneers, cross-laminated, cured again, shaped, edged, grooved, hardware attached, sanded, assembled, tested, adjusted, disassembled, sealed, smoothed, polished, assembled and packaged.” We need a lie down just reading about it. If that’s not enough, each and every pair comes from a board that’s done some serious serious downhill and up-street cruising. If these sunnies could talk, they’d probably say “sick”, “stoked” “dude” and “rad” on repeat.