Posted on March 16, 2022
Growing up in the sailing community of Long Beach, CA, yacht broker and YouTube personality Jeff Merrill has been wearing Spooners since childhood, and our Aloha shirts are a staple in his life. We caught up with Jeff to take us on a tour of his collection and explain his deep connection to Reyn Spooner.
"I don't remember a time in my life when I wasn't wearing Reyn Spooner shirts."
JM: "Reyn's are what everyone wore at Alamitos Bay Yacht Club in Long Beach, where I grew up racing sailboats. I remember going to high school wearing Spooners, and they've been my preferred shirts well before I was aware of branding."
"Spooners are integral to my personal culture and an important part of my identity."
Jeff's professional career has revolved around the marine industry. For Jeff, Reyn Spooner's attire is comfortable, colorful, and stylish – and fits right in with the casualness of the boating lifestyle in a serious but informal way.
JM: "For the last three decades, I've been involved with cruising sail and powerboats (trawlers), working with buyers and sellers. My 'uniform' always starts with a Reyn Spooner. I started a YouTube channel eight years ago and now have over 100 videos and close to 6 million views – every video finds me wearing a Spooner – I'm the de facto Aloha shirt broker."
JMYS (Jeff Merrill Yacht Sales) is a yacht brokerage specializing in trawlers and providing worldwide representation and personal attention to their clients. Jeff has been selling cruising boats for most of his career, and his job has taken him all over the world.
JM: "I get to spend a lot of time offshore in deep blue water out at sea moving from port to port. One of my good friends told me that he thinks JMYS really stands for "Just Makes You Smile," and I'd say the Aloha shirts do a lot of the smiling for me."
A Spooner Tradition
"My wife, Pam, rewards me with a new Spooner whenever I sell a boat, and I try to film each video with a new, different shirt to keep things fresh."
Jeff's collection includes over 300 shirts with 50+ accessories - t-shirts, bags, zipper pouches, hydro flasks, masks, gaiters. It also includes laptop sleeves and a tie that Jeff's daughter Elle made using old shirts.
Out of his entire collection, his favorite is his Honolulu Fire Dept Aloha shirt, but Jeff also has a sweet spot for our special commemoratives like Hawaiian Christmas, Summer Commemorative, and Thanksgiving Aloha shirts.