Few of Quiksilver’s countless loyalists likely know the backstory attached to the company’s wave-crashing logo. Renowned Japanese artist Hokusai's piece, “The Great Wave off Kanagawa,” depicts an elegant and iconic wave as it threatens to overwhelm Mt. Fiji. Distilled to its essence, this world-famous woodblock became Quiksilver’s world-famous icon.
Quiksilver was founded in 1969 and thrives at the confluence of snow and surf. The company crafts everything from board shorts to backcountry snowboarding shells, all capturing the tidal power of frothing seas and stoic strength of soaring mountains.
From Colorado's mountain towns to the foggy shores of the Pacific Northwest as well as Hokusai’s homeland, these casual pieces are right at home. Warm, rugged and sporting clean lines, this sweater and pant combo flows from Quiksilver’s sea and mountain roots.
The Block Knit has a welcome weight to it: testers stepped out in Denver snowfalls with nothing but the sweater over a t-shirt, surprised by the high level of comfort and protection. However, this isn’t a Gore-tex shell and it doesn’t claim to be. Even so, a warm, cotton/nylon/polyamide/wool blend defended against melting snowflakes and misty rain. Wear it on a seaside stroll in San Francisco to check the surf or in a drafty bar in a no-name mountain town. The bold maroon center stripe adds classic Quik style, as does the tasteful woven logo on the left hip. A hidden inner loop can attach to key rings, injecting the stylish Block with even more utility.
Best For: Brisk days and nights, from coast to coast
Denver testers never tired of the Union Pant from office to skatepark, nights on the town to Sunday afternoon lounging. Comfortably thick, Union's surprising range of movement suited bike commutes and skate sessions. Pulling compliments right and left, the style is at home in the landlocked Rockies as along San Francisco’s ocean-side bluffs. The true-fitting pant is topped off by two front and two back pockets. The only negative? Waiting for them to come out of the washing machine.
Best For: Everyday wear, running the gamut from casual to classy
To take this Quiksilver combo on the road, we paired it with the Forsake Clyde. These waterproof sneakers are part skate shoe, part hiking boot and 100% Active Junky-approved. Unique stitching and design make Clyde a conversation starter; testers truly valued the ability to pair the kicks with nearly anything. Supportive without looking orthopedic, put them through mud and mayhem without missing a beat.
Best For: Casual winter wear