Located in the Duck, North Carolina, a seaside town that occasionally gets lost in the umbrella term of “The Outer Banks”, Untucked has established itself as a favorite of locals and tourists alike. Operating as a retail location paired with an e-commerce website, Untucked brings the coast to you, wherever you may be, in their premier products and clothing. Not only do they make shopping for your beach day easy, but they also focus heavily upon philanthropic partnerships with local charities in the Duck community. We had the opportunity to speak with store founder and all-around great guy, Dave Facenda to hear about his incredible store and what is going on in the beautiful Duck, North Carolina.
For people that are unfamiliar with Untucked, how would you describe your store?
Untucked is a casual, beach focused beach apparel store. We’re right here on the water, on the Currituck Sound and we don’t take ourselves too seriously.
On your website, it says that you have partnered with Food for Thought, Currituck Dare Community Foundation, and the Outer Banks Relief Foundation. How important is it to you and your store’s philosophy to partner with local charities?
It’s becoming increasingly more important as the store gets older to give back in some way to the community. The community has done so much over the past few years and we really think that by partnering with these initiatives and charities that we hope we can make a significant impact in the community. Right now, one of our focuses for the holiday season is to join with the Community Foundation and raise money during the Yuletide festival here in Duck for Oakacroak relief. I know it was in the news for a little while but it’s falling out but they got absolutely devastated during Hurricane Dorian. They’re just now getting some roads back open, 400 structures I believe were condemned because of the flooding. It’s a mess there so we’re working with other stores in the waterfront shops where we are located to have a fundraiser for them.
The Outer Banks in general experience lots of tourist traffic. I imagine if you weren’t careful, you could easily slip into becoming a touristy kind of store, with a bunch of souvenir shirts and beach essentials. What keeps you motivated to stay such a unique and creative store?
The stuff that you’re talking about is in every other store out here and when I opened this store the focus was what was not available in this area. You could find tourist stuff everywhere but the better gentlemen didn’t have a place to shop. So, that’s what keeps me focussed and what has kept me focussed over the years has been the returning customers. We have an extraordinarily high amount of returning customers for the transient nature of this place. Having those guys come in every summer or even twice a year and being so stoked that they can find something here that they have never seen before is what keeps me motivated.
What’s the coolest item in your store at the moment, as far as you’re concerned, and why?
That one has me stumped, I have so many cool things here. I would have to say in apparel, it’s the Raleigh denim with the whole story there, the fit, the fabrication, and the people. One of the things that I enjoy selling the most, coolest in that way of being able to tell the whole story is these axes by Hults Bruk. They use American hickory in the shafts but they are all these Swedish hand-forged heads and I love it when somebody comes in and they know they need to get a gift for somebody but they don’t know what to get them and we can get them tuned up on something like that.
In reading many reviews, quality service seems to be a defining characteristic of Untucked. With that, what is your service philosophy and what type of experience do you want customers to have at Untucked?
In retail, the main differentiating factor from store to store is customer service and I try to make sure that my employees know that. To that end, that means that there is no more important thing to me than my employees. They are the point of contact with the customer, they are the one that makes the experience happen. So they need to feel supported on the back end so that means I have to give them all the knowledge and authority that I can possibly give them. That being said, they use that knowledge and use that authority and use their own special way of interacting with that to listen to the customer and help address the customer’s needs and give them that experience where you come into the store, even if the weather is bad outside, it’s as good as having a day on the beach.
Is there a fashion trend that you are a fan of and is there one that you are not a fan of?
In Duck, everything is moving towards comfort, especially during this time of the year. You’ve got your rigid denim being replaced with a stretch denim. Sweaters are being replaced with a finer quality like cashmere, softer, more cuddly. A lot of fabrics are changing from a traditional Oxford cloth to either a stretch fabric, performance fabric or a double cloth that’s a lot softer. I’m a huge fan of comfort while still maintaining a quality appearance. A lot of the trends that I either don’t believe in or don’t care for I just don’t even bother bringing it. You’re not going to find a pair of super skinny jeans in Untucked. You’re not going to find a whole bunch of performance or workout wear as daywear in Untucked.
What made you decide that Fulton & Roark is a good brand to carry in your store?
When I first got the packaging, the packaging is really what sold me initially because at the time we were a fairly young store and I only had around 800 square feet and my counter was packed with other things. We started with the three original fragrances and the amount of sales I was getting from the products and the amount of love people had for the products continued to sell me.
Do you have a favorite Fulton & Roark scent?
My personal favorite is Perpetua of what we’ve got right now, I love that scent.
For a man that wants to have a casual beachy look, what outfit or piece do you recommend that they start with?
This time of the year, a pair of dark washed jeans, a light gray sweater, and a pair of comfortable shoes. On the beach that will get you through 90% of the things, you have to do.