by Laura Neilson
Nepal seems like an unlikely source for skateboards inspired by the '70s surfing scene, but Arniko Skateboards shines a light on the Himalayan country's long-standing identity as region rich with traditional woodcarvers—an ideal production site for the socially-responsible brand with a global consumer base.
Founded two years ago by Nepalese-born Marius Arniko Arter, Arniko Skateboards is a Swiss company that works with small local enterprises to employ talented Nepalese woodcarvers. The company, which boasts the same name as a major highway in Nepal, strives to bring better working opportunities and conditions to one of the world's poorest countries, while at the same time promoting the craftsmanship of citizens.
Currently available in nine artful styles, the boards featuring varying timbers and carvings. Ideal for urban cruising, the slalom-form base is derived from '70s surfboard models. The company also carries its own range of clothing and accessories, produced exclusively in Nepal.
Prices start at about $160. For purchasing and more information, visit the Arniko website.