Oliver James - Nov 20 2020
If you’ve made it to our journal then you must be a summer enthusiast like the rest of the OJL team. I’m your founder, Oliver James Micklewright and I’m delighted to be introducing you to Oliver James Lilo’s, we hope you can follow us here, and let’s continue to chase the never ending OJ summer together.
When we started building the brand, we wanted to create handsome pieces of floating furniture that allowed you to blissfully drift amongst a sea of beautiful blue water, we wanted to give people the ultimate luxury escape, and we wanted to give them that in the comfort of their own home.
To you, it might just be a Lilo, but to me it was so much more, the brand was about building a product around this transformative idea of chasing the sun, chasing happiness and never settling for anything but extraordinary, and exploring the notion that we don’t always have to grow up. My story for Oliver James really comes from my childhood, and I wanted to pay homage to that, and the fond memories I share with family and friends, a simpler time in our lives when a pool of water gave us hours of endless joy, I wanted to find that, and give it to you.
When I was a kid, my family used to spend summers in the South of France at our home, the Mas des Oliviers, named after the 18 olive trees on the property. We loved the garden best, where we used to spend long languid days relaxing around the terracotta-tiled swimming pool, reading and soaking in the sun.
Our favourite games involved blue and white inflatable lilos, and I have fond memories of hiding behind the pool house with friends and waiting for my parents to relax completely on their lilos before canonballing into the water and soaking them.
However, the lilos would inevitably puncture, and it was my job to repair them. I used to patch them up with Super Glue and puncture repair kits to make them last a few more weeks, sometimes having to re-inflate them every day. When a lilo was beyond repair, we would replace it with the exact same model and, as it was usually my fault, I had to pay for it out of the pocket money I earned by doing chores around the house.
When I was eventually asked to find a pool float that would match the aesthetic of our family home and last longer than a few months, I couldn’t. So I started designing lilos. A few years later, and after several prototypes, we are finally launching our own brand, Oliver James. We hope you love what we’ve come up with, we sure do.