Having a Whale of a Time

“From beach to bar”

Picture the scene…

A shimmering expanse of sand stretching as far as the eye can see, a gentle breeze playing through your hair as you stroll along feeling the sand beneath your feet. But what are you wearing?

Increasingly, people’s answer is Whale of a Time, an exciting casualwear brand inspired by the relaxed lifestyle along the North Norfolk coast set up by Ellie Wales in 2015, to provide simple yet stylish basics (surprisingly hard to find for those of us who prefer a pared-back aesthetic) that will easily take you “from beach to bar”.

Deliciously soft and comfortable, as well as being as welcome change from the branded look favoured elsewhere, Whale of a Time aims to provide versatile, retro-inspired pieces in block colours that work for both men and women. With everything from pretty pastel shades to bold primary colours, there is something to suit every taste in the collection each season and, as we’ve discovered, it’s very hard to stop at one piece!

Female entrepeneurship has increasingly been in the media of late, but often the focus is on urban-centric businesses. So as an owner of a rural-based business, what does a day in the life for Ellie, founder of Whale of a Time, look like?

It’s a day of two halves for Ellie, with the mornings finding her behind a computer screen dealing with the emails and admin that go along with running your own business, as well as coming up with new ideas for the next collection. Maintaining the brand’s social media accounts also happens during the morning hours, and it’s time that is clearly well spent, as we can really recommend checking out the Instagram feed for Whale of a Time if you want to look at some beautiful images of beach and country life, all in the brand’s clothing of course!

By contrast, afternoons are spent processing and packing orders, with each item being hand wrapped in the brand’s gorgeous bespoke tissue paper before being posted off to their lucky new owners. Once the trip to the post office is complete, Ellie makes the most of her beautiful coastal Norfolk location by either heading down to her local beach for an evening walk or taking her horse Oliver for a ride.

Working for yourself isn’t for everyone and we took the opportunity to ask Ellie what the best and worst parts of her entrepreneurial journey are. She cites the best aspects as being the freedom of being her own boss, as well as the positive feedback her creations have been receiving. The great feedback has its downsides however, as the pressure to keep producing great products is one of Ellie’s least favourite parts of running Whale of a Time.

Talking of creating great products, we asked Ellie if she could give us any hints for what we could expect from the next collection. Although there are lots of exciting new products in the pipeline, the details are being kept top secret so all we could squeeze out of Ellie was the tantalising promise of a quarter-zip sweatshirt. We’re already looking forward to seeing that one!

For now then, let’s go back to the current collection and look at what we think are the highlights (click on each photo to shop):

Holkham blue & white long-sleeved t-shirt

First up of our picks is this gorgeous pale blue and white Holkham long sleeved t-shirt. Often overlooked for its short sleeved sibling, we think Ellie is onto a winner with this stylish long-sleeved version. We love both the fit and modern yet retro feel of this and the pale blue colour of this particular option (check out the website for other colourways) makes it a great wardrobe essential all year round.

Omura navy & white sweatshirt

Next up is this super stylish navy and white Omura sweatshirt, designed to look great on both men and women. We’re big fans of the navy and white colour combination (other options are available) and this will look just as great with this summer’s white jeans as it will with darker denim in the colder months.

Salcombe white/blue/pink deck shirt

Last but definitely not least is Spring/Summer 2018’s hit, the Salcombe deck shirt. We at The Finer Horse have already fallen for the charms of the dark green version, but we wanted to showcase this lovely white, pale blue and pale pink version, as it makes us think of holidays and those perfect sun-drenched days at the beach. Flattering to all skin tones, we can see why this has been such a hit so far!

So there you have it, ensure you have a Whale of a Time this summer (pun absolutely intended) with your favourite pieces from this great British brand.


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