Marc Andreini and the Evolution of Surfboard Shaping in Santa Barbara
Marc Andreini is a renowned Santa Barbara surfboard shaper who has been creating boards locally for over five decades. His designs are known for their unique shapes, high-performance capabilities, and innovative construction techniques. Andreini’s love of surfing began in the early 1960s when he was just a teenager. Since then, he has become one of the most respected and revered surfboard shapers in the industry.
Andreini moved to Santa Barbara as a child in 1957. He grew up swimming and body surfing at East Beach, and caught his first wave in 1961 at Sandspit at the age of 10. In his surfing memoir The Gift, Andreini recounts fixing his first surfboard ding on his own in 1962 using wall spackle and house paint. By the age of 14, he launched his own ding repair business, using scrap materials from the White Owl surf shop in Summerland, owned at the time by Surf n’ Wear and White Owl Surfboards founder Jeff White. Andreini was part of the White Owl surf team, assembled by Jeff White to keep the local shop groms busy.
Marc Andreini and Santa Barbara Surfboard Shaping during the 1970's
Andreini’s career as a surfboard shaper started in the early 1970's. In 1974, Jeff White invited Andreini to shape White Owl Surfboards exclusively for White’s Surf n’ Wear surf shops, which by that time counted 3 retail stores in Santa Barbara, Goleta, and San Luis Obispo.
Among Andreini’s most sought after designs is the board known as the “Vaquero.” The shaper called the earliest version of these boards the “365” because they were rideable all year long.
Andreini’s talents rose with the times, at the dawn of the shortboard revolution and a new era for Santa Barbara surfboard shapers' contributions to advancements in surfing technologies. Local mentors such as Jeff White, George Greenough, Renny Yater, John Bradbuy, John Eickhart, and Al Merrick influenced the development of Andreini’s innovative surfboard designs.
Andreini’s passion for shaping led him to start his own surfboard company, Andreini Surfboards. Over the years, he has created a wide variety of surfboards, including longboards, shortboards, and mid-length boards.
One of the most unique aspects of Andreini’s surfboard designs is his use of a “parallel rail” shape. This design involves creating a straight rail line from nose to tail, which provides the board with greater speed and control. In addition to the parallel rail, Andreini is also known for his “spoon” nose and “double-end” tail designs, which help to increase the board’s maneuverability and wave-catching abilities.
Andreini chronicled his life growing up in Montecito during the good old days of the local Santa Barbara surfing scene in his book, The Gift, which includes tributes and histories of the development of surfboard shaping from Hawaii to California, as well as the contributions of pivotal shapers. Andreini’s book features legendary photos and tales of surfing local spots from the Ranch to Rincon during the 1960’s-70’s.
Andreini’s reputation as a surfboard shaper has earned him a loyal following of surfers around the world. In addition to his innovative designs, Andreini is also known for his commitment to quality craftsmanship. He personally shapes each board by hand, using only the finest materials available.
Despite his many accomplishments, Andreini remains humble and grounded in his approach to surfboard shaping. He is always looking for new ways to improve his designs and push the boundaries of what is possible in the sport of surfing. His passion for surfing and surfboard shaping has inspired countless surfers around the world to pursue their own dreams and push themselves to be the best they can be.
Whether you are a seasoned pro or just starting out in the world of surfing, Marc Andreini’s surfboards are a must-have for anyone who wants to experience the thrill of riding the waves like a true master.
Come on down to the Beach House store to view our collection of Owl and Andreini boards over the years, and pick up your own copy of The Gift.