Most of us can not wait to go on holiday to relax and forget about work, but it was on a beach that two brothers decided to launch their business.
Matt and BJ Hepworth, who are from Bessacarr, Doncaster, were on holiday in Ibiza in 2014 when they made the bold decision to leave their jobs and create their own menswear beach brand. Their brand, Bowler and Beach, was launched a short time later, inspired by the many holidays they have taken, including childhood trips to the beaches of Portugal’s Algarve.
It is no surprise, therefore, that their swim shorts designs are British with a touch of Portuguese flair.
They say they wanted to convey the colour and excitement that comes with spending a day in the sun with friends and family so well that you can almost smell the sea air – and I have to say that just looking at their vibrant colours and patterns makes me yearn for my holiday.
When it came to production, the brothers turned to Northern Portugal, where luxury swim shorts have been made for years.
The pair, who had been working in corporate jobs in London before creating their own business, originally only sold their distinctive products in the South of England, but they soon decided that they wanted to expand their reach.
When it came to selling in the north they knew they wanted to return to their roots and to Doncaster. The pair approached old Hill House school friend James Jones, who is now marketing director at award- winning premier fashion boutique Robinsons of Bawtry, to be their first northern stockist.
James said: “This is a fantastic concept and the high quality of the brand enables it to sit comfortably with established boutique menswear brands such as Boss and Ralph Lauren. We wish them every success and are proud to support them in their business objectives.”
The eyecatching prints of their first animal-inspired collection, including lobster, seahorse, swallow, elephant, stag and octopus, would make any man stand out from the crowd. I have to say, I wish their products were available in women’s swimwear too.
Matt said: “Robinsons of Bawtry has given us the perfect platform for our swimwear collection and we are grateful to them for sharing our vision.
“Now with a small network of north and south independent stockists and the luxury Pine Cliffs resort in the Algarve, we are confident that the popularity and demand for Bowler and Beach will continue.”