CLAY HUNTINGTON ADORES Laguna Beach. To understand his business, RWorld Surf & Skate, you have to understand that. He also loves surfing. And skateboarding. The fourth cornerstone of RWorld is Huntington’s family—who he loves with an intensity that burns even brighter than the torch he carries for this city.
This is all you have to know to savvy what North Laguna’s newest surf shop is all about: it is built on Clay Huntington’s passions, with family being foremost among them.
“Some of our shirts come from photos of the designs made by resin splattering on the floor of my surfboard glassing factory in San Clemente,” he says. “Others are drawn by my daughter, who is getting her degree in illustration and has already drawn for Dark Horse Comics. My son shapes boards and runs the shop, and we also sell my wife’s handmade jewelry…so we’re literally bringing people into our world.”
RWorld’s ethos is bound up in an effort to reflect Laguna Beach’s distinct culture through the prism of the Huntington's. Clay lived in town for a long time (with plans to move back) and feels like the city has seeped into everything he does.
“The shop encompasses what I grew up with here in Laguna Beach,” he continues. “It was an artistic community that had both strong surf and skate communities—one of the only towns where downhill skateboarding is legal. It’s really the perfect spot for us to launch a brand because everything my family likes to do is connected to the city’s culture.”
Though Huntington and his family are currently hyper-focused on their shop, they still make time to enjoy Laguna Beach. “We surf at Rockpile, eat at Fusion Sushi at least once a week, and catch some sun now and again at Thousand Steps,” he notes. “My favorite Laguna pastime is First Thursday's Art Walk. Besides that, we’ve basically been living in the shop.”
Huntington is another great example of a Laguna local chasing his passion to live a life uncommon. He was a lawyer—and a successful one, with his own firm—when he was taught to shape surfboard blanks by friends Steve and Barrie Boehne of Infinity Surfboards. Before long, Huntington was pursuing surfboard shaping and glassing more and more and finding himself less and less interested in the practice of law. After a few years of balancing two jobs (and a very successful tandem surfing career with his wife), Huntington was able to close his law firm and devote his time to Huntington Glassworks. His Laguna Beach storefront officially opened in July of 2014 and was named “Best Surf Shop” in the Orange County Register’s BEST OF OC 2015.
He credits the city, and of course, his family as the major factors in his success.
"It’s very much a Laguna Beach lifestyle shop,” Huntington concludes. “You’ve got art, fashion, surf, and skate. And you’re sharing it all with your family. That’s the feeling I grew up with; it’s what I love.”