Feb 01

Hawaiian Vacation Clothing

hapunabeachhomeCan’t figure out what to about Hawaiian vacation clothing?

Too much or too little? You’ll be too hot or cold? out of  style?

Well, the point of this post is to help you out with those concerns.

Less is Better

First of all, shoot for too little. It’s pretty much human nature you’re going to pack too much, anyway. If six t-shirts work, ten would be even better, right?  Wrong, really try to make a list and stick to it. OK, here’s the first order of business.

What’s the best Luggage for your Hawaii Trip?

The lighter, the better, is the absolute best answer. Remember, the airlines have set limits on weight, so be sure to check that out.Think less clothing and less luggage. It wasn’t too long ago, when Hawaii visitors would come out of Baggage Claim with suitcases that looked like steamer trunks … and the trunks would be crammed with clothing and gear. “Them days are gone forever,” and they never were necessary.

Many people now come out of those same Baggage Claims with a carry on bag and a personal bag prepared to stay for a week!  Of course we’re talking about per person, here.

How do they do that?

The answer is simple; they’ve learned how to pack their luggage, using the least amount of space possible, and minimizing the amount of clothing and gear that’s packed. Taking only what they really need (including the important stuff), and nothing more. Notice I stressed  the personal bag, too. Call that the “lifesaver bag.” In it goes a lightweight change of clothes, maybe a camera, ticket pouch , food (yes, FOOD), small toilet articles etc..

Each person has their own budget and personal taste for luggage, but two features of luggage should always be first class: zippers and wheels (if you have a roll around). A broken cheap wheel can be pretty dang aggravating.

Summing up, pack down to an approved airline (check your airline for dimensions) carry on, if possible, and minimize the amount of clothing and gear you actually pack.

“But, how do I get all my neat stuff in a small bag?” you might ask.

Roll ’em, Roll ’em, Roll ’em, to your favorite Hawaiian Island .

Ask any ex-Navy guy, and he’ll tell you about rolling up the entire military issue to fit in his sea bag. It’s the way to go.  Space doesn’t allow a detailed tutorial for the rolling technique, but enter “how to roll clothes for suitcase” in Google, and you’ll get a jillion ideas. Having said that, here’s additional tips for the roll ’em and go idea:

  • Feature soft, pliable fabrics: cotton, rayon
  • Try to avoid linens or starched fabrics; they’ll get creases you can’t get out with a steam hose
  • Polyester trousers are OK, but Polyester shirts and blouses don’t play nice with tropical weather. They’ll hold their shape, but make you sweat (there, I said it, I couldn’t think of any other way to say it)
  • Tuck your rolled clothing in wherever there’s even the hint of a gap
  • Even if you have to go the Check Baggage route, still roll’ em. You’ll pack more in less space.

And think of this; if you run short during your Hawaii trip, wear one of the shirts you bought as a souvenir for Uncle Jack (a tip here: buy in your size and what you like. Skip Uncle Jack, it’ll wind up in his sock drawer anyway).

 Dress for Hawaii Weather

Focus on the fact that your Hawaii trip is to a  very mild, tropical climate. Average daytime  temperatures  are 720F to 850 F … and that’s conservative. Beach shorts, t-shirts and slippahs* are the most practical vacation clothing for just about any day, and any occasion.

The * is not a typo. Slippahs, in the everyday jargon of Hawaii, are just about any footwear that resembles a slipper.

“Dressing up” is dressier shorts and an Aloha shirt. OK, there are exceptions to that. There are some way upscale hotel dining rooms that require more mainland style attire, but those are few. Check your hotel reservations for that.

Here’s another exception: The Hawaiian Islands have several mountains that are over 8,000 ft. elevation. If any of your Hawaii tours include  a mountain trip, such as Haleakala or Mauna Kea, be sure to pack a warm jacket, or at the very least, a set of heavy sweats. This tip applies especially to the Haleakala Sunrise tour.

“As a tour guide on the Haleakala Sunrise trip, I’ve actually had guests arrive at the bus door at 2:30 am dressed in beach shorts and tank tops … and even less … ready to journey up to 10,000 ft. with just that much clothing on. Scurrying back to their room and pulling the blankets off the bed as a substitute for jackets, saved the day for them.”

And for rainy weather, buy a cheap plastic hooded raincoat. It won’t exactly set a fashion trend, but gets the job done, and doesn’t take up much space in your luggage.

Be in Style, Hawaiian Style

As mentioned before, light weight, very casual clothing is definitely Hawaii style. If you want to crank it up a little, buy a couple of Aloha shirts or blouses. Amazon, EBay, or just a Google search for “Hawaiian shirt” will give you a huge selection. Just a little oversize is a good choice, because it will allow those trade wind breezes to whisper through.

aloha shirts

As regards t-shirts and footwear. All types of t-shirts are popular, but especially those with a Hawaii theme, or college and pro sports (Dallas Cowboys, San Francisco 49ers or Giants, are very popular, and will get you an occasional “right on, Bruddah!” on the streets).

Hawaii is probably the only place in the world where a keiki’s (baby’s) first slippahs, when retired, are bronzed. Ok, I just made that up, but it’s close. If you’re not used to wearing slippahs, don’t plan on taking any long hikes; your legs will get tired quite soon. So, bring along good walking sneakers for the long hikes; shopping in Lahaina, and traipsing  across lava fields come to mind. But slippahs and good sneakers are all you really need.

You know where this  is.

 I guess you know where this is

[warning]More great posts about Hawaii coming soon![/warning]


Makawao, Hawaii

 P.S. Keep those Comments Coming, Cousins!

Permanent link to this article: http://hawaii4newbies.com/234/hawaiian-vacation-clothing/

Jun 06

Hawaiian Jewelry … Hooks to Heirloom

How to find Hawaiian jewelry and what exactly it is, are questions often asked. You know what your price range is, so in this article I’ll offer some choices, and explanations about Hawaiian style personal jewelry.

Hawaiian jewelry runs the gamut from beautiful natural necklaces to island style gold and silver.

Get “Hooked” on Hawaiian Hooks.

The Hawaiian word for hook is makau (muhcow …that’s pretty close).  The(S)Calib(1,1,1,1, 1, 1, 1); AWB(1475,1319); Info(195,884,176,0,1031,300,0)(2087;847,2118,54017,43011,1591,1304,9992,28935;18156,0,105,0)hook as pictured here has become symbolic of Hawaiiana, and Polynesia in general,  And rightfully so. fishing was, and still is, a very important part of Hawaiian culture.  Hooks were made from natural materials; shell bone, wood, even stone. The cords from natural  fibers; olana , hau, very strong fibers. Today even glass and plastic are used; glass can be a very attractive jewelry material, plastic … not so much

 The hook is embedded deeply in the Hawaiian culture. The creation story of Maui uses demigod Maui’s giant hook as the focus for dragging up the bottom of the ocean to form the Hawaiian Islands chain.

Go “nuts” for Kukui

The Kukui (kookooee) lei on the right is an elegant example of Hawaiiana. Kukui leis, in kukui-necklace2very old Hawaii, were worn only by the ali`l (ahlee`ee), or royalty. In modern times they symbolize good luck.

You’ll find these nut leis in a variety of treatments, all the way from ground and polished, to completely natural. Below is an example of a lei with several different styles of the nut. The shells are called Opihi (oh pee hee) and the little seeds are from the Koa tree

kukui leiThe Kukui nut comes from the Kukui tree (duh!), a native tree of Polynesia (and also the Official Hawaii State Tree). The tree was actually brought to the Hawaiian Islands by the early Polynesian voyages from the south. So jewelry made from the nut is very much steeped in Hawaiian history.

Go natural on your Hawaii Vacation

Natural jewelry, especially leis, is not a gender thing in Hawaii. The lei to the left is mine, and I wore it to work every day as  a tour guide/bus driver.

Kamani, wiliwili, and goat’s eye are common materials for leis. Of these, the red seeds from the wiliwili (weelee weelee) are probably the most impressive. When your in Hawaii, and in a quality gift shop, ask about a wilwili lei. Also, standby for sticker shock.

Special Mention: Ni`ihau Shell Lei

Speaking of sticker shock, the Ni`ihau shell lei is another pricey item, but well worth the money.niihau lei Why so expensive? Mostly due to shortage of the pinkish shells and the meticulous care taken to create

the lei. That, and because they are only made one place in the world … the Island of Ni`ihau in the  Hawaiian chain. The pictue on the right  shows a choker and a 3 strand lei. Beware of  fake knockoffs,  insist on proof of authenticity.

Go for the Gold …or Silver … Heirloom Jewelry

As you might imagine, Hawaiian Heirloom Jewelry is incredibly popular; in Hawaii …  and around the world. Hawaii gold

A bit of history  here, in order for you to get a better appreciation of these beautiful items.

It’s generally believed that Hawaii’s love for gold jewelry is related to the strong ties Hawaii’s royalty had with the British Empire up though the late 1800s. In February 1862, Prince Albert, consort and husband to England’s Queen Victoria, died. During the queen’s time of grief, only mourning clothes and black-accented jewelry were acceptable apparel at the royal court.  In honor of this tradition a 23-year-old Hawaiian princess, sister to the reigning king of Hawaii, David Kalakaua, began wearing  gold jewelry with black accents. This same princess later succeeded her brother, and was titled Queen Liliuokalani.  Sadly,  she was Hawaii’s last reigning queen and monarch.

As you can see from the picture above, custom made heirloom jewelry can be custom carved with just about anything desired. If you want to remain historical, the Hawaiian words Hoomanao Mau (lasting remembrance) or  Aloha Oe (farewell to thee) have remained popular as a tribute.


Fun Facts About Hawaii: The capitol of the State of Hawaii is Honolulu on the Island of O`ahu

Honolulu= Hono looloo

O`ahu= Oh ah hoo

[warning]More great posts about Hawaii coming soon![/warning]


Makawao, Hawaii

 P.S. Keep those Comments Coming, Cousins!







Permanent link to this article: http://hawaii4newbies.com/46/hawaiian-jewelry-now-or-later/

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