The direct-to-consumer industry has a new product category and it's all about the ordinary beach chair. Except Sunflow, the brand behind the wildly popular Sunrise beach chair, isn't so ordinary.
Founders Leslie Hsu and Greg Besner started Sunflow to create a beach chair that was portable, intuitive to set up and looked good, too. The pair linked up with the legendary industrial designer Yves Behar's design and innovation firm, Fuseproject, which had been instrumental in the creation of the Herman Miller Sayl chair, a collection of Movado watches, among many other well-designed products.
The result is the Sunrise beach chair: a four-way reclining seat made of lightweight rust-resistant aluminum and water-resistant fabric. The chair folds up into a backpack, and setting up the seat is similar to unfolding a baby stroller. At $200, the Sunrise isn't the cheapest beach chair, yet it's still not the most expensive. And you'll still have to spend extra on accoutrements like a sun shade ($48) or a cup holder ($25).
You don't need to spend a couple bills on a beach chair. Hell, you don't need a beach chair at all. But we don't mind spending a little extra on something to give us some semblance of normalcy and joy amid a pandemic.