One of the rad things about snowboarding is that the industry is always changing with new technology and new brands coming onto the scene. This year IRS (I Ride Sideways) blew up, sponsoring the Adrenalin Board Store Rail Jam and as well as getting great results from the team riders.
There is a buzz for IRS, with more people are talking about the brand. Each week we are seeing more people rockin it. This week I caught up with Tim Tunks the man behind IRS to find out how he got started and what’s next for IRS.
Leearni – Tim tell me about IRS, what is your brand all about?
Tim – I Ride Sideways is about fun. We love riding boards and having a good time doing it and that’s what our label is based on. IRS is different to a lot of other brands because we support the little guy. We don’t use sweatshops to make our gear; we raise money for projects that help people in need and our clothing is cut the way that board riders want to wear.
Leearni – What made you start it?
Tim – In the past I’ve made little brands for myself and my mates just for fun. That’s how IRS started too. I was driving down the coast for a surf and I thought to myself, man, I love riding sideways. I love it. That’s what I do, I Ride Sideways, IRS. I told a few people and they were stoked on it. It started for fun and I’m still having fun doing it. I hope that never changes. And if I can use IRS to make a difference in this world then even better.
Leearni – I know you were recently in Bali looking for manufacturers, how important is it that IRS be sweatshop free?
Tim – It’s so important to me. I believe that everyone deserves to be paid a fair wage and to work in clean, safe, conditions for reasonable hours. I believe children should be going to school and having fun not making products for next to no pay so that we can buy them a little bit cheaper. Bali is a great place! I’ve found a really good manufacturer that ticks all the boxes for me. They make quality clothing and their staff are treated well, paid right, work normal hours and the conditions are good.
Leearni – That’s awesome your so passionate about this, how do you think IRS can help?
Tim – These are human rights issues and my hope is that IRS can educate people about worker’s rights so that next time they’re deciding to buy clothes they think about the person who made them. Consumer demand speaks loudest to companies so if we all choose sweatshop free then more brands will follow.
Leearni – How is the IRS team going? Anyone we should be watching out for?
Tim – All of them! They’re going great. I stress to all my riders that I want them to have fun and just do their best in comps. They still do really well! . Henry Bessell is winning heaps of events at the snow this year, Nick Griffiths won at the Adrenalin Board store Rail Jam and is doing well in other comps, Pride Hasler is consistently making the podium in all her events at the snow. James Windsor just came 4th at the world titles for cable wakeboarding in the junior boys division. Tara Pyers came 4th at Australian nationals for cable and Kane Trubenbacher is killing it with his skating. He doesn’t compete much but makes heaps of great videos, which are super fun to watch. All our riders are great people, not just great riders, and that’s important to me. So if you see them say hey, and have a shred with them.
Leearni – Do you have any advice for up and coming riders?
Tim – Have fun!! Don’t be all about getting sponsored. I promise you that if you are killing it, having fun and you’re a great person to shred with people will notice and talk. Just keep shredding for fun.
Leearni – I hear you’re getting ready for summer, what can we expect from IRS for summer this year?
Tim – We’re growing fast and venturing in to board shorts for the first time! The ladies are just as important to us so look out for the new women’s threads too. We’ll be releasing some more gear mid way through summer and if everything goes to plan the midsummer range will include a new stretch boardie!
Leearni – I see IRS around a lot, you must be pretty stoked the brand is getting out there?
Tim – I’m stoked to see people liking it. We make gear that we love so to see everyone else liking it as well makes me froth! We don’t just make things because they will sell; we make things that we love to wear.
Leearni – What are your future plans and goals for IRS?
Tim – Future plans, we have so many. One that you should look out for is our “Shred To Care” project. Twice a year we will be making a tee and 100% of the profits will go towards projects helping and empowering people in need; building wells, schools etc. Spread the word on this one. Together we can make a big difference.
Look out for the summer range dropping soon from IRS. IRS is available at Go Wake Bli Bli QLD, Adrenalin Board Store Braddon ACT, First Tracks Jindabyne NSW and online at www.iridesideways.com. I’m stoked to see how well IRS is doing, check it out if you haven’t already heard of it.