Fashion in Film: Lords of Dogtown

In the history of surf and skate culture, no group defines summer and speed better than the California cool kid set known as the Z-Boys of 1970’s South Santa Monica and Venice Beach.


This group of young surfers who took their impeccable moves and newly invented tricks to the concrete streets and empty backyard pools started a revolution that turned their hobby into the world-renowned lifestyle and multi-million dollar industry it is today.

The 2005 movie Lords of Dogtown introduced the Z-Boys to a newer generation, bringing to life the colorful beginnings of this influential group of kids who lived for the thrill on the board.

But the Z-Boys didn’t just have sharp skills on the board; they also had a sharp sense of style. They dressed for movement, but most of all they dressed to assert their independence, and laidback outlook on life.

For those of you who are already familiar with the Z-Boys, the famous movie, and the 2001 documentary, Dogtown and Z-Boys which based on them, then you know the unmistakable uniform of these kids who made the ocean waves and city streets their home away from home.

Rugged slim cut jeans, low-slung cut-off shorts, dusty bandannas tied around the forehead, ratty crewneck t-shirts, ankle socks, and flat tennis shoes were regular attire amongst this crew.

Wrists and necks were adorned with beaded bracelets and necklaces stacked one on top of the other.

Their girlfriends looked like bohemian flower children in light washed flare jeans, embroidered tunic tops, whimsical earrings, and slouchy braids in their hair. The entire look was laidback and casual, yet completely ready for domination.

If it weren’t for the Z-Boys, today’s surfers and skaters may never have learned those awesome aerial and sliding moves that would turn skating into one of the most exciting extreme sports today.

And they may never have learned to look as cool as they are with heads of shaggy hair and roughed-up Vans sneakers on their feet.

The Z-Boys were all about innovation and style, two things that are still influencing both sports and fashion culture today.

Even you can channel the original Z-Boys Stacy, Jay, Tony Alva, and their friends portrayed in the movie, with two of these seventies-inspired beach looks.

1. The Endless Summer Tank from Forever 21 – $12.80

2. Gold & Leather Woven Wrap Bracelet from BrooklynThread – $58.00

3. Blank Denim Boyfriend Shorts from – $78.00

4. Checkerboard Slip-On Sneakers from Vans – $42.00

5. Classic Straw Fedora from Forever 21 – $10.80

1. Cut Off Denim Shorts from Forever 21 – $18.90

2. Turquoise Road Bracelet from Free People- $28.00

3. Crepe Woven Top from Forever 21 – $18.90

4. Plush Peacock Silk Hair Scarf from Free People – $54.00

5. Silver Feather Earrings from BrooklynThread – $26.00

6. Peace Sandal from Free People – $88.00