...but how the hell do I even begin to describe them to anybody that wasn't there for the first go-round?
well, here it goes: Small Room Skateboards was this mysterious micro brand out of cali in the early 90's that suddenly found success when "not being trendy" became the big trend in skateboarding. Alongside fellow geezer fave, Molotov (and early Think), Small Room was one of those "small ad" companies. With the ad space usually reserved for bottom-barrel novelty brands, Small Room took out cryptic b&w quarter page ads in Thrasher and Poweredge to seperate themselves from the evil corporations of the time and bolster an underdog cult-like status that people could really rally behind.
truth be told, I honestly can't tell you that much for certain about the company. I know Russ Pope was involved. That Phil E, Joey Pulsifer, Mako Urabe and a young Frank Hirata all rode for them. Their boards were always great and with surprisingly excellent distribution for such a small company. The logos and ads were sick... even though they didn't really make any fucking sense.
but in a way, that's kinda what made them awesome. be it Neil Blender or David Lynch, if you can somehow manage to incorporate some enigmatic mystique into your vibe to where you're allowed to just remain open-ended without explaining every detail and people still give a shit, you have to ride that out. and that's exactly what Small Room did.
after a good two-year stint (I think), they finally pooped out around '92 in a sea of flash-in-the-pan companies whose runs weren't even close to being as long (public, shine, chapter 7, milk, 1more... the list is endless).
I'd like to say that I can still see a bit of Small Room influence in the smaller companies of today but I'm probably romanticizing it a bit. I'm just glad to see that people still remember this company and even thought enough to keep some of their stickers. I wish I had.
...though I still can't believe they rejected Chico!