I caught the travel bug when I first decided to move to Australia in 2006 for a study abroad program. I met so many people and fell in love with the culture of travelers and the deep respect they had for the world. I moved home, finished out my college degree, and took a job as a Design Engineer working with contract company for Caterpillar.
All while traveling to a handful of beautiful destinations: Cozumel, Jamaica, Virgin Island etc, In July 2011 I had a 2 week work trip to test out a prototype I had designed in Gosselies Belgium. I decided that on those 2 weeks that I had 3 weekends to visit as many places as I could. First weekend was to visit my German friends who I had met and lived with in Australia in 2006, second weekend Paris driving alone in that city is crazy, but a great experience, and 3rd weekend was to go to London. I had a dream for years that I was supposed to meet someone in London and decided that this might be my chance to do so.
Figured it sounded more like a movie than a real thing, but decided to go anyways because Id always wanted to see the city. I jumped on the high speed train from Belgium to go sight see in London. The last night out, I met a woman who is now my wife. We spend about 1.5 years keeping in touch and visiting each other every 6 weeks from London to Florida and vise versa. Trips to Ireland, Spain, Bahamas, The Florida Keys, her traveling for a month climbing mountains, going to Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, just to name a few.
Fast forward to 2012 We got engaged all before going to Paris for a weekend to celebrate. We started planning our engagement and planning out wedding in the Dominican Republic with our American and English friends. What a great way to celebrate the 2 crazy people who had a long distance relationship than to do so in paradise. 6 months before we were to get married we realized we forgot about the visa / immigrating situation and the best way to speed up the process was to get married before our wedding in the Dominican. So we did a spur of the moment wedding 3 weeks later on Singer Island. My wife flew over from England with her parents, and my parents flew down from Indiana.
It was going to be a small beach wedding until Hurricane Sandy decided to come along and create a big ole mess. We ended up having to ditch the small beach wedding and get married in the back yard of a house I had rents for our families to stay in. It was a weird experience but makes for a great story and wouldn’t have changed it. In april of the next year we had our nice beach wedding in Dominican with about 30 friends and family who traveled from Europe and the US to be with us.
In Sept my wife immigrated to the US to live with me in Florida. This is when we started to focus on the Island Bum brand. With everything we’ve learned, the places we had been, and the people we met, we wanted to create a brand that resembled our story. I was working in Florida for Pratt and Whitney designing jet engines and working part time on Island Bum until Jan 2016. I quit my job to pursue the Island Bum brand. It represents everything my wife and I and what we have been thru. Its organically growing by word of mouth and we have people as far as California buying our merchandise to people seeing our hats down in the Virgin Islands, Bahamas, etc. we just keep enjoying our time, traveling and meeting more people along the way.
This is a nutshell of our story. Hope it might be something you would like to share.
It was always about the anticipation and feeling of the islands that drew me in from a child. The unknown remote life that they offered always seemed to have magical healing powers that intrigued me. My name is Tyler Carpenter, the founder and owner of Island Bum a lifestyle brand that focuses on the ideals of living the Beach Bum lifestyle but also enjoying a bit of Island Luxury.
It all started out when I was a young boy spending time on the weekends at my grandfather’s lake cottage in a small town in Indiana. Playing in the water, fishing, tubing, skiing are some of the happiest times I remember from my childhood. Even as a child when we took family vacations I can still remember noticing how happy they seemed by the beach or at a tropical destination and always wondering why to myself.
Fast forward to 2006 when I traveled to Australia for a study abroad program. I traveled all over the east coast stopping from Melbourne, to Sydney, up thru the Whitsunday Islands, and to Cairns. It wasn’t until I traveled to the top of Fitzroy Island off of the coast of Cairns that I felt pure joy and happiness unlike anything before. It was like a lightning bolt hit me. I felt deep content with my life and how I wanted to live it as I stared out over the outer Great Barrier Reef and surrounding landscape with crystal blue waters. I finally figured out why people had “that” feeling at the beach or their tropical destination that I had wondered as a child.
When I came home from my 5 month trip on a high I finished university and went to work just like the average person. I was following in the steps that I thought I was supposed to, what society trained me to do. A couple years in I found myself staring at the blank walls unhappy in my engineering cubicle wondering how the hell I let myself get to this point; Surrounded by people who had bad attitudes, who were not happy, and complained about their situation. I wanted something to remind me of the time on top of Fitzroy Island. So I researched phrases and stared at the inspiration posters all over the offices; Perseverance, Determination, etc. I wanted to create my own state of mind to get me thru the day in my cubicle until I could figure out my next path.
After going back and forth I decided to trademark the phrase “Livin’ on Island Time” and couldn’t believe no one had done this already. So I created my poster with the inspiration with a picture I took on Fitzroy Island. I gave some out to friends and family, sold a few. I kept wondering how can I turn the feeling I get from looking at this poster into a life I enjoyed and share with the world. I started remembering my times in Australia and my childhood. I went back and forth on names for a brand until my wife and I came across the thought that “Island Bum” would be a great way to describe someone, an idea, and a way of life. We told a few close friends and family and they were instantly sold on the idea. Being unsure of where it would lead, I went ahead and trademarked Island Bum and was surprised again that no one had grabbed onto this idea yet.
I then decided Indiana and Illinois life wasn’t where I belonged so, on a leap of faith I moved to Florida in 2012 where I could be closer to the life I wanted and could test out our idea. We met local fisherman, divers, beach goers and could tell we were on to something. As the brand continues to grow, so do we. I have worked hard to organically grow my idea in Australia from one idea on a poster, to a single t-shirt, now to a small brand that offers natural skin care to luxury island wear and accessories.
As we grow, I focus on creating it better than before with better materials while still not losing sight of my vision I had back on Fitzroy Island. The ideal is to share my love of the islands, and the peace they bring the world, while providing a brand people would enjoy and be proud to be a part of – that ‘Beach Bum meets Island Luxury’.
My goal here at Island Bum is that the brand will show each of you a way of life that makes you happy and allows you to share and help others along the way. Every day is an adventure, so Get Your Beach On™ and we look forward to you joining us on this journey.