Birdwell’s Beach Britches. Learn From Them.

It’s Memorial Day Weekend. A time to celebrate America. And what brand epitomizes the spirit of this country better than Birdwells. Made in Orange County, California since 1961, they are perfection.

They started with Carrie Birdwell Mann, who transformed her house into a sewing room and store, launching Birdwell Beach Britches.

Why are Birdwells great?

  • They don’t sell a bunch of crap and license their logo on everything.
  • They keep the company in the family, and don’t sell out to conglomerates.
  • They make their swimsuits in the United States.
  • They keep their price modest.
  • They are cool.
  • They don’t change their logo around.
  • They have a goofy-cool mascot, Birdie.
  • Their website is low tech and archaic.

Their history is simple. Founded in 1961 by Carrie Birdwell Mann (and still run by the family), they have been making only swimsuits since then. Their first market was surfers, but their fame spread through surf shops. The suits are durable, made from special fabrics like Surfnyl. Their slogan is “We don’t build 1,000 things. We build one thing 1,000 ways.”

Birdwells are great. 301 mid lengths are best, but there are others.

Look to their business model; it is an answer to what ails any old brand. Enthusiasm. Family ownership. Honesty. Usefulness. Fair pricing. Street credibility. Consistency.


  • Garland Pollard

    J. Garland Pollard IV is editor/publisher of BrandlandUSA. Since 2006, the website has chronicled the history and business of America’s great brands.

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