We had the good fortune of connecting with Nina Ruud and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nina, how did you come up with the idea for your business?
After losing a pair of expensive sunglasses, we looked for something that reflected the local vibe and culture of San Diego. The options we found for sale in stores were nothing like what we love about this place! Everything was made of plastic, and not everything actually had UV400 lenses, which are essential for optimal coverage. We decided there was an opportunity here… to create something that was made with natural materials, and that all featured Polarized/Uv400 lens protection. And because we were artists, we knew this was something we could incorporate art into each piece. Within a few weeks we had a name, a prototype, and a dream for a better way to see clearly.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I thrive in change and finding new challenges in life. Whether it’s with my own business, or helping other businesses, there comes a thrill with problem solving and looking for new ways to accomplish great things. In my 20’s I always laughed at the concept of “business.” I was a traveler, backpacking through continents and viewing the world in real time. But as I grew up, I saw that we as humans need some structure and stability in our own selves to be able to offer anything useful to others. Indeed backpacking is a game changer and highly recommended. But it’s the return from the trip, the unpacking of the journals and knick knacks that can set us up for success. I use my professions to create a life I am proud of, and to truly be able to give back to my community and loved ones.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Whenever a friend visits, I always get a piece of paper and draw out a map of where we are venturing. In San Diego my favorite route starts in Balboa Park, then downtown on the bay. If we have time, Coronado and the Silver Strand, otherwise we head straight to Sunset Cliffs and OB. From there I usually head to Paradise Point in Mission Bay, then Windansea in La Jolla. Not for long though because we always have to end at the Gliderport above Black’s Beach for sunset!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Rafael Figueiredo! He is the original founder of the idea of Cali Life Co., and has been crucial in every step of its success!
Other: www.shardayoga.com which is a non-profit I am a volunteer, donor and board member on. We serve orphanages and migrant shelters in our border communities by providing mentoring, education, and wellness classes.
Photo Credit: Leo Pepino