Made In Maui County Festival

Why it is Important to Support Local Business in Hawaii

The concept of starting your own business whether it’s here in Hawaii or somewhere else, is not something that everyone is brave enough to do. And those who take the leap put their heart and soul into the business, investing more than just money, but also their time, knowledge and other resources just to make sure that they succeed. 

The economy today is tough for all kinds of businesses. That’s why if you have a friend, a relative or an acquaintance who is working really hard just to make their business work, you might want to do them a favor and give them your support in any manner possible. In fact, supporting various local businesses in Hawaii provides a lot of benefits, not just for you, but also for everyone in the islands. By supporting a local business, you can help them:

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Best Gifts from Hawaii for Someone You Love

Leaving Hawaii soon? After spending a wonderful time in the beautiful island of Maui, you might be wondering now what gifts from the Hawaiian Islands to bring home with you as mementos of your stay in this tropical paradise. Or maybe you are thinking about grabbing a few Hawaii souvenirs to give to your family, friends and loved ones as soon as you get home. Well, if you don’t know where to find them, we are here to give you some great ideas and top choices for some of the best Hawaiian crafts proudly made by some of the local artisans from the islands of Maui, Lanai, and Molokai. Here, we are listing four great gifts that are available in the Made in Maui County Marketplace. (more…)

9 Local Hawaiian Gifts to Give for Friends Moving to Mainland

Do you have friends moving back to the mainland from Hawaii? We are sure there will be a lot to miss once they leave our beautiful tropical Hawaiian island, but it doesn’t mean that they will have to leave everything behind. With so many craftsmen and artisans in Hawaii, especially in Maui, who are creating various pieces of artwork, fashion, jewelry, food, and drinks that define the beauty of Hawaii, you will have a lot of things to give as a going-away gift! Here are 9 of the best local Hawaiian gifts to share with your friends and loved ones who are moving away to remind them of the wonderful time they have spent in our tropical paradise. (more…)

Keep’n TABS: Handbags & Accessories Designed with Recycled Can Tabs

In his seminal song “Margaritaville,” Jimmy Buffett famously laments, “Blew out my flip-flop. Stepped on a pop-top.”

Of course, pop-top soda cans have long gone the way of pogs – bottle caps for passion-orange-guava juice or milk (originally from Haleakala Dairy) and a popular preoccupation for school kids in the 1990s. They exist only in memory or eclectic collections.

In the place of pop-tops today are tabs that stay on the can. The tabs can be easily removed and now hold their own brand of fascination achieving a second life of sorts as shiny, durable baubles for fashion accessories.

That is the specialty of Maui’s Keep’n TABS, the creator Heather Pietras, a former caseworker in social services. (more…)

Best Maui Made Souvenirs to Bring Back from Your Hawaii Vacation

The bountiful Hawaiian Islands offer both locals and visitors a wide variety of experiences as well as treats that appeal to all five of our senses. Maui, most specifically, promises its guests a selection of beautiful scenery, mouthwatering food, and many other activities that are sure to quench your thirst for some R and R. Visiting this tropical paradise is sure to be a part of the bucket list of travelers from all over the world.

But what is a great Hawaii vacation getaway without souvenirs to share the experience with your closest family and friends? If you need some bright ideas on what are the best gifts from Maui to bring home after a great holiday, here are some of the top souvenirs that you can find during your stay!

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Kapa Art, A Personal Journey

Just ask Kekai Kahokuka’alani, owner of Kapa Curious, what makes her company unique, and she’ll talk about her roots, her ‘ohana, and about sharing the art of kapa making with the world. Here’s her story . . .

Born into a family of hula dancers, kapa makers, wood carvers, and lei makers I have been blessed to grow up thinking that it is normal to have art everywhere in a home. The smell of wauke and natural dyes would permeate the air while the ringing of tools carving into wood echoed in our ahupua’a on Moloka’i. When I became a mother, art took a backseat to providing for my daughter so when she decided to graduate from high school early, I was not prepared and found myself at a loss for what to do with my spare time. One day I found a piece of my mother’s kapa that she left behind from one of her visits, and I was suddenly compelled to embrace my art again. (more…)

Pack Your (Sail) Bags! – There’s a Bag For That

Let’s face it; bags are essential for everyday life. They carry all of our belongings, our necessities, our not-so-necessary items, and we feel much safer knowing all of our “stuff” is stored securely in a single contraption.

Some bags are not as orthopedic friendly, not eco-friendly, and well, just not as cute as others. Some bags weigh ten pounds before putting a single thing in them, while some are made from real animals, and some are just plain fugly (yep, this is a word). So why do we put ourselves through this distress when there is a simple solution?

Well, Gerilyn Emata, owner/creator of Sailbags Maui, has the answer.
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Na Koa Brand: Keeping Hawaii Close to Your Head & Heart

Channeling ancient tradition, deities, and culture, Maui-based Na Koa Brand marshals a minimalist style to create compelling pieces of wearable art. Na Koa translates to “fearless warrior”, and founder and clothing designer Daimus Kanahele says he strives to inspire adults and youth “to live life to the fullest, without fear”.
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all i see is ART by Leah M. Santos

Art has the power to transform our world. Just ask artist and designer Leah Santos owner of “all I see is ART.”

Leah creates lightweight laser cut and carved wood jewelry that embodies Hawaiian motifs on high quality, locally sourced and imported wood. Each design has a significant story and tells a little more about the beauty found on Maui where she grew up.

Utilizing natural materials, Leah transforms them by using modern technology to carve intricate designs that emulate the beauty seen in our Hawaiian environment. The blending of art and technology allows her to be creative in an emerging field of fabrication.
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Clutch as Canvas – A.M.I.T.Y. Designs Blends Fabrics, Flora and Fun

Maui-born and Kihei-based photographer Amity Mason has created a razor-sharp niche that embraces Hawaii’s unmistakable sense of place. Her one-of-a-kind handbags, adorned with iconic isle motifs, suit themselves to almost any occasion, be it a beach day, luau or a reception at the Arts & Cultural Center. This, she maintains, is a natural outgrowth of her island roots.

“When not sewing, you can find me in the ocean – surfing, swimming, paddling,” says Mason, whose name fittingly means friendship and love.
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