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Sam Robertson: Nom*D x Cardrona

Cardrona have teamed up with Sam Robertson from Nom*D to create a co-lab t-shirt with quite a back story! 

Cardrona 1984. Sam from Nom*d, father & brother.
Sam’s dad, Chris, & younger brother, Geordie, at Cardrona in 1984

In 1990, 12-year old skateboarder Sam Robertson decided that he wanted to swap his skis for a snowboard, & headed into Queenstown shop NZ Shred to hire his first snowboard. He headed up with his family to Cardrona Alpine Resort, home to the country’s first ever halfpipe & a bustling snowboard scene.

The Robertsons were a passionate ski family – Sam learnt to ski when he was just 4 years old in 1982, & his parents continued skiing through until the mid-1990s. By the end of the 1990 winter, Sam had rented the same snowboard from NZ Shred so many times that they sold it to him when the season ended.

Sam was given a tough choice to make as a teenager, when a local Dunedin skateboard shop offered him the option of being put on the store’s skate team, or snowboard team. The practical young man looked at the rate he wore through his skate decks & wheels, compared to only needing one snowboard a season. He chose to join the year-round skateboard team.

After many years of snowboard trips with friends & hitchhiking up to the ski fields, Sam drifted away from winter sports in 1996. He never thought that his later career would bring him back to the slopes almost 20 years later.

Sam Robertson from Nom*D with his first snowboard. Cardrona Colab.
Sam with his first snowboard, 1990

Sam Robertson is the oldest son of Kiwi fashion legends Margi & Chris Robertson, founders of the Nom*D fashion label, & has worked as their graphic designer & stencil maker for the last 15 years.

In 2009, Margi brought Nom*D to Wanaka, in a new shop called 47Frocks – a New Zealand designer clothing store owned by one Bridget Legnavksky. Bridget is now Cardrona’s General Manager.

At Bridget’s invitation, Sam headed back up the mountain this winter, this time to teach his 13 year-old daughter Frankie to snowboard at the place where he learned to ride.

“What I thought was going to be 4 days of teaching her to do it, has turned into me being hooked again”

Hooked is one way of putting it – after 20 years away from the sport, Sam now owns a couple of boards & is up at Cardrona 3 or 4 days a week.

Cardrona & Nom*D colab t-shirt
The Nom*D & Cardrona Colab t-shirt.

In Nom*D’s 30th anniversary year, Sam’s passion for snowboarding has come full-circle with his family’s business. He has designed a collaboration t-shirt with Cardrona, incorporating Nom*D’s Old-English text asterisk into a snowflake design stencil print.

“I’m honoured to make a Cardrona t-shirt. Of the Wanaka/Queenstown ski fields I’ve probably ridden Cardrona the most,” he says. “We’ve talked about some other things that would be pretty cool to do too – we’ll see what happens.”

The Nom*D x Cardrona collab t-shirt is available to purchase at Cardrona’s 3 retail locations in Queenstown, Wanaka & on the mountain.

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