Russell Hearts Caroline


Caroline Robinson is living the sunny life. She designs a bathing suit line called Citrine Swim inspired by the four years she lived in Hawaii and travels to Indonesia, where the suits are made. Her Mount Pleasant lifestyle boutique Drift is filled with her bikinis in tropical prints and sorbet colors, turquoise and amethyst jewelry (which she also designs), pineapple-motif baby blankets and trucker hats. The store reflects her go-with-the-flow personality and adventurous spirit. She recently started working with Sel De Mer, a showroom in California, which she says is opening a lot of new doors for the swim line.

Walk into Channels of Charleston on King Street, and you’re likely to be greeted with a boisterous, “What’s up!” from co-owner Russell Robinson, Caroline’s husband. Russell has a big smile and is one of those guys you feel like you have known forever after just a brief phone call. He says he’s passionate about building relationships. He’s a natural salesman, and it seems genuine. Russell opened Drift with Caroline soon after the two moved back home from Hawaii, where they had lived for four years, soaking up the surf and beach lifestyle. About a year later, Russell seized the opportunity to open a second concept, Channels, on King Street with Angelo Vleck, longtime owner of Parrot Surf Shop in Mount Pleasant. “It’s a dream come true,” Russell says.

How they met:
Russell and Caroline both grew up in Mount Pleasant, but they went to different high schools and different colleges. They met at the former O’Malley’s on King Street.

“She was this super adventurous, hippy chick,” he says. “She was what I wanted to be.”

When Caroline later moved to Hawaii, it didn’t take too long for Russell to follow. They later got engaged on Morris Island, the place where they had their first kiss.

Charleston eventually pulled them back home. They moved back four years ago, got married and channeled their love of all things surf and sand into the the swim line and stores. They started a new adventure when they welcomed a son, Charlie, who is almost 17 months old.

What they love about summer:
You can find Russell and Caroline at her parent’s house on Isle of Palms and or out on the water surfing and boating. And they don’t hesitate to take Charlie with them when they feel the urge to travel. He accompanied them to Puerto Rico before his first birthday.