Ashland outdoors retailer Sunday Afternoons doesn’t put a lid on innovation

written by Kevin Max

Angeline and Robbin Lacy began their business thirty years ago with an outdoor blanket they’d designed for their family adventures, but it was the fabric scraps that built the Ashland-based company. They began making high quality hats from the scraps.

Angeline and Robbin Lacy

Today, Sunday Afternoons is focused on innovation and hats. The company has forty-five patents for inventions such as a sunglass lock, which is two narrow pockets on the sides of a hat that hold the arms of sunglasses in place, and a split brim that allows for easy folding and packing. They sell their hats in fifty-seven countries.

Sunday Afternoons’ patented sunglass lock

Prior to becoming Sunday Afternoons CEO, Sarah Sameh was working in the outdoor retail sector and was intrigued by the brand and where it could go. “I had known about Sunday Afternoons and, by chance, met Robbin at a bike shop in Talent, and we got to chatting and reflecting on what was next for the company and how to get to the next level,” Sameh said. “I started in 2015 and thought I’d be there just a couple of years, and it has been six, and here I am.”

Sunday Afternoons CEO, Sarah Sameh

Sameh said, “So many things inspire me about Sunday Afternoons—the exceptionally strong and talented people who work here and their commitment to delivering an incredible product.” (The hats come with a lifetime guarantee.)

What’s next? “We are focused on processes to scale to the next level and making sure that our supply chain is in line with its environmental values,” Sameh said.

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