Chris Chough, a ClarkLiving friend and client, grew up skateboarding in LA. Over the years he’s seen skateboarding evolve, splinter, fracture, and resurface with an urgency reminiscent of its earliest days. As a father, he introduced his kids to skateboarding, and now he’s bringing thatpassion to The Banks, a skate shop he opened on Sunset Blvd in Silverlake earlier this month.
Chris Chough and Steve Clark inside The Banks.
Chough has lived in and around Silverlake for the better part of a decade. He chose to open upshop here because it’s his home, and because the neighborhood was lacking a shop that seemed like such a natural fit. “Most of this block,” Chough says, “is independent business owners. We all know each other, we’re all friendly.” Independent businesses gravitate toward this stretch of Sunset Blvd because the culture here thrives on supporting local business. Chough explains that skate shops tend toward two different directions: boutique shops that are more focused on clothing and lifestyle, and core skate shops that focus on the sport. The Banks occupies the middle ground- boutique style with core values and an inventory that speaks to serious skaters.
Chough acknowledges that skateboarding has always combined sport, lifestyle, and art; the goal with The Banks is to reflect that. “There are a few shops in New York right now that are doing what we do,” Chough says, “but in LA…not so much. The market is a little more divided out here.”
Inside The Banks
The Banks has a sleek, minimalist show room and an open east wall where Chough plans to show local artists’ work on a rotating basis. The shop carries merchandise from Altamont, Etnies, Es, Emerica, Lakai, Baker, Fourstar, and Girl. The shop’s official launch party is being co-sponsored by Girl on Saturday, February 21.
The Banks is located at 3532 W. Sunset Blvd, 90026. You can visit their website at www.thebanksla.com and follow them on Instagram @thebanksla