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Tastemaker: Ian Urtnowski

The founder of URT Clothing talks pirates, cheap flip-flops, and SoCal surf style


Ian Urtnowski

Age: 28
Neighborhood: Coronado
Current project: Founder and owner of URT Clothing, a fashion company inspired by the tides.
Background: Ian grew up on the beaches of San Diego, working as a lifeguard. He got the idea to start URT while surfing four years ago, when a sea lion popped up above the water and barked Ian’s nickname, “URT.” Today the company continues to grow, with items available in more than 30 stores across California, Colorado, New York, and Hawaii. 
Fashion philosophy: Never let your clothing speak louder than you, and always dress for an adventure that could happen without warning.
Personal style: Pirate on a cruise ship.

His favorite things:


Spending lots of money on sandals is a fool’s game. It’s just a sandal. Locals are so cheap they’re losable! Build a stockpile. $16, localsusa.com

Nixon Blaster

A water-resistant Bluetooth speaker is perfect for summer. Keep it in your car; you never know when you’ll need that boom. The Blaster, $150, nixon.com

Hippie Sabotage

A unique blend of mellow and exhilarating vibes make up the duo beatmakers from Sacramento named Hippie Sabotage. New singles like “White Tiger” and “Stay High” will become your soundtrack to summer. soundcloud.com/hippiesabotage

Viper Fins

Viper fins make you swim faster, bodysurf stronger, and blend in with the locals underwater. Insta-lifeguard respect. $60, viperfins.com

Resco Instruments

RESCO Instruments, a Coronado Navy SEAL-owned company, has brought military styling to timepieces. $2,205, rescoinstruments.com

URT Sea Lion

The sea lion goes URT! A simple flip of the hem reveals a six-month tide chart on the inside. URT is a company for the true ocean user. Big Urt t-shirt, $26, urturt.com

Depalma Dalamere Belt

To me, the belt is worth more than the pants. It’s what holds us up that makes us who we are. Dalamere belt, $77,

Taranaki New Zealand

Taranaki, New Zealand, offers visual sensory overload. It’s where surfing with penguins and killer whales just comes with the territory.

909 Axis Stryker

You can hardly call yourself a pirate without a knife ready to spring into action. I use it for everything. 909 Axis Stryker, $180 to $195, benchmade.com


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