February's Custom of the Month goes out to our friends at Gentemstick out of Japan.
We met with the Gentemstick crew last season in Niseko, Japan, which is their home base. Gentemstick has been around for over 2 decades and still remain one of the most authentic snowboard companies in the world. But to them, it's not called snowboarding, instead they call it "snowsurfing," a concept that links together the wave and the snow. All their boards are handmade and each year they only produce a limited amount.
Both Mizu and Gentemstick share a lot of similar values, which was very apparent in the daily synergy between us on the mountain. Needless to say, we were really excited to be working on a custom project with these guys.
How did you first hear about the Mizu Custom program? A good friend of ours told us about MIZU and their custom program. We had known about MIZU for a while and had always been a fan of their products and ethics, so it didn’t take us long to decide to make a custom bottle with MIZU.
What about Mizu and their custom program made it a great fit for your brand? Top quality product, great brand story and an even better mission statement. At Gentemstick, we try to be the same in that way.
What is your favorite product in the Mizu line up and how did you choose your custom product? We like all Mizu products. They’re all simple, clean and durable. If I had to pick one, it would be the V10. Jussi prepared us a fresh cup of tea with his V10 after a long hike and before the drop, near the summit of Mt Yotei. It was a moment of peaceful warmth that we experienced in the middle of deep powder snow.
We chose the V8 bottle for our custom because we needed quality insulation to make sure the drink stays liquid in a well below freezing environment. We thought it was a good size for bringing plenty of water on a long and cold backcountry hike.
Does your brand support a cause initiative? We try to minimize waste by not overproducing products each year, minimize the use of toxic ingredients, as well as maximize the use of natural, biodegradable materials. We also support the “1% for the Planet” movement by donating 1% of our sales to environmental-conscious organizations.
How does your brand live a Mizu Life? We make snowboards because we love snowboarding. We love that moment when your ego starts to blur and you become one with what surrounds you.
That pure moment of bliss when you are totally in sync with the board, the snow, the water, the mountain, the ocean and the whole universe. To be able to live that moment, we try to follow nature’s cycle, paying attention to the storms, the winds, the swells, and we go hunting for the best conditions of that given day. This is what we call snowsurfing.