Pre-Summer Photoshoot

Behind the Behind the Scenes at our May Photoshoot

Behind the Behind the Scenes at our May Photoshoot

It’s already May, which means summer is almost here! And that means it’s time for another photoshoot. The every cheerful Loryn returned for her second shoot with us. And she brought along her friend, Liz, who we had never works with before. As one might expect, when the models get along and are happy, that  happiness shows on camera.

Liz and Loryn having fun between shots in the Jungle Fever "Magnum PI Print" Hawaiian dresses

Liz and Loryn having fun between shots in the Jungle Fever “Magnum PI Print” Hawaiian dresses

We also got to shoot several all new styles including a new line of women’s tops like this black one.

Liz in floral Hawaiian print tops

Liz wearing an all-new line of Hawaiian floral print tops

In our experience, there’s something new, unusual or unexpected at every photoshoot. This time, it was the buzzing of a drone (a DJI Phantom model, we think) over our heads. It was probably busy filming the awesome sunset. It didn’t seem to be looking at us and as long as it didn’t crash on us, we didn’t care.

A drone that appears to be a DJI Phantom model buzzed overhead during parts of the shoot

A drone that appears to be a DJI Phantom model buzzed overhead during parts of the shoot

Overall, it was a fun and very productive shoot. We got a ton of pics of new and current products that we’ll be uploading to the store and sharing on social media. But as much as we shot, we still have a lot more to go and we’re already planning the next two photoshoots!

Loryn and Liz wearing white wedding muumuus

Loryn and Liz wearing white wedding muumuus

All-New Hawaiian Dress Style for 2016

new elastic waist dress style for 2016Most Hawaiian clothing manufactures come out with a number of new prints every year. But they don’t come out with new styles nearly as often. Several manufactures have told us that the reason for this is that if the new style doesn’t sell well, they’ll be stuck with a ton of unsold inventory which is costly. But every once in a while, the decision makers at a manufacture gets hit with a bolt of inspiration. And this is exactly what happened late in 2015. We were given a sneak peak at bunch of new dress prototypes in November that would be ready for sale early this year. And the new full length Hawaiian dress style pictured above is the first of 6 new styles (5 dresses, 1 women’s top) to be available. The rest will be put into production over the next couple of months, just in time for Spring. So stay tuned!

The Top 5 Dresses and Shirts of 2015

top-5-dresses-and-shirts-of-2015-main

As 2015 comes to a close, it’s fun to look back and see what were the most popular items of the year. Remember, just because a shirt or dress is on this list does not mean you need to like it. If you’re not feeling it, don’t worry. Look for the item that is a reflection of you! In fact, if you love an outfit that nobody else likes, then that just means your taste and style are one of a kind, and that’s GREAT! So with that out of this way, let’s get started with the dresses.

#5 – Kilauea Red Tank Dress

Kilauea Red Flounce Tank Dress

 

#4 – Red Hibiscus Garden Black Long Tank

Red Hibiscus Garden Tank Dress

 

#3 – Tropic Fever Purple Tank Dress

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#2 – Giant Orchid Red Long Tank

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#1 – Parrot Island Orange Short Tank Dress

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OK. That was pretty fun. And now here are the top 5 men’s shirts for 2015!

#5 – Kilauea Red Hawaiian Shirt

Kilauea Red Men's Hawaiian Shirt

 

#4 – Bamboo Paradise Cream Hawaiian Shirt

Bamboo Paradise Cream Men's Hawaiian Shirt

 

#3 – Royal Hibiscus Blue Hawaiian Shirt

Royal Hibiscus Blue Hawaiian Shirt

 

#2 – Totally Turtle Green Hawaiian Shirt

Totally Turtle Green Hawaiian Shirt

 

#1 – Parrot Island Orange Hawaiian Shirt

Parrot Island Orange Hawaiian Shirt

So there you have it, the top 5 dresses and shirts for 2015. You probably noticed that the Parrot Island shirt and dress were both number 1. And that’s a first, as far as we can remember. The Giant Orchid and Red Hibiscus Garden dresses may have ranked higher if it wasn’t for some manufacturer issues that halted production for a few months. On the shirt side, Totally Turtle Green really gave Parrot Island Orange a good race down to the wire.

What’s Coming in 2016

2015 may be winding down but we’re already getting ready for 2016. We have a number of things in the works for next year. Naturally, we’ll have many new prints that will be available in men’s Hawaiian shirts as well as women’s tops and dresses. More importantly, we’re excited to bring you all-new dress styles from current and new manufactures. Pictured below is a sample dress that will be available in early 2016. It will also be available in a shorter version for women and also a girls size dress. We’ve seen it and it is super cute!

New Hawaiian dress style coming in early 2016

Prototype of a new Hawaiian dress style coming in early 2016

We’ve also gotten a numerous requests for dresses with sleeves. So, in response to those requests, the dress below will available in multiple prints in early 2016. And most of these dresses will also be available in matching men’s Hawaiian shirts.

bamboo paradise Hawaiian dress with sleeves

You asked for sleeves, you got it! This dress style in multiple prints will be available in early 2016.

A sizable chunk of our business is providing Hawaiian shirts, dresses and muumuus for companies, schools, organizations, and even hula halaus. We will be expanding our efforts in this area by offering a wider range of prints, fabrics and products and services. Our goal is too make it easy for you to look your group an aloha vibe whether working at a trade show, serving patrons at a restaurant, or performing in front of an audience.

Make a great impression with group Hawaiian shirts embroidered with your logo.

Make a great impression with group Hawaiian shirts embroidered with your logo.

Don’t you just love weddings? We will also be adding to our wedding collection next year with new beach wedding dresses and muumuus as well as matching shirts and dresses for the wedding party. If 2016 is YOUR year, we will be more than happy to help you find the perfect dress for your big day!

Hawaiian wedding dress

We will be adding new dresses and shirts to our wedding collection in 2016.

Those are just a few of the things we’ll have ready to go in early 2016. There’s a lot more going on behind the scenes to improve everything that we do to make sure you get a truly happy world-class experience with us, even if you don’t order anything. If all we do is make you smile, even for a moment, when you see one of our pictures on Instagram or posts on Facebook, we’d consider that a success. So as 2015 comes to an end, enjoy the holidays with family and loved ones and we’ll see you in 2016!

baily-new-year-party-blower

 

What Are Pupus and How They Can Make Your Life Awesome

Volcanic Shrimp Recipe

Garlicky shrimp tossed in a fiery flavorful sauce can best be described as a cross between buffalo shrimp and scampi makes a great appetizer. (Click on imager for recipe)

The Holidays are a time to celebrate with friends and loved ones. And when you celebrate, you like to eat! And although you may not know it, you want to eat pupus! Whether you are at a Christmas or New Year’s party or watching some college football bowl games or NLF playoffs, yummy easy-to-eat food makes any party 10 times more fun. Maybe even a hundred! Not only that, but a pupu party could even change your life!

Kalua Pork Slider with Hawaiian Sweet Bread and Cole Slaw

Kalua pork sliders with Hawaiian sweet bread and cole slaw (Click on image for recipe)

When you hear the word “pupu”, you probably think one of two things. If you aren’t familiar with the term, you might think about a baby diaper. But if you already know what it means, you’ll likely start salivating and wish it was already Aloha Friday! “Pupu” is a Hawaiian term for any appetizer, snack or finger food. It usually refers to smaller portions of food which may include egg rolls, chicken wings, poke and practically any type of food that can be prepared and eaten in small bites at a party or social gathering.

Versatile teriyaki beef. Delicious, easy to make and goes with just about everything! (beer, wine, even sake)

Versatile teriyaki beef. Delicious, easy to make and goes with just about everything! (Click on image for recipe)

Pupus have always been popular in Hawaii households as the preferred food format for Super Bowl parties and other festive get-togethers. But they have also become increasingly popular at many bars and restaurants as people want to try many different foods in one sitting. In fact, people will often just share an assortment of pupus or a “pupu platter” for dinner rather than order traditional meals. That way everybody can try a variety of different things without getting super full. And variety is the spice of life!

Fun Peeps!

Why live an ordinary good life when you can live a super fun great life?

If you’re planning a party, we strongly suggest that you decide to serve pupus.  Not only will your party be more fun, it just might make your life better! Let’s face it, would you rather be known as “that fun peep” or just a “boring peep”? There’s nothing more demoralizing than throwing a party where everybody just sits and eats food so heavy that they pass out on your couch or in your back yard. We’ve seen it happen. But host an epically fun party and suddenly life could get interesting!

If you throw a pupu party, this is what will happen (true story). Your guests will arrive and be immediately intrigued by your impressive spread of easy-to-eat pupus. The lightness of pupus will enable your guests to roam and interact more freely. This will boost the energy in the room. Conversations will be more interesting. Jokes will be funnier. Laughter will be heartier. A couple might even decide to start dating at your party. And because pupus are not as heavy as “regular food”  your guests won’t get the dreaded “kanak attack” (the local term for a food coma). That means the party can go all night long!

And it doesn’t stop there. Because everyone had such a wonderful time, these things will happen.

  1. Friends and friends of friends will look forward to your next party.
  2. As the instigator of all this fun, people will want to meet you.
  3. People will assume you are excellent at other things besides throwing a party. This is key.
  4. Your self-confidence will skyrocket (even if you are already confident).

Once this ball gets rolling, new doors will open for you. This could lead to new job or business opportunities. It might even lead to new and intriguing personal relationships. At the very least, your parties will be more lively and memorable. But more likely, your life will become much more fun and interesting, and may even awesome!

Here are a few party tips.

  • Pair your pupus with some wine or other beverages of choice. We really like Costco wines.
  • For something different, pair some of your salty or cured meats with sake (Japanese rice wine). Note: Sake is not meant to be taken as shots. This ain’t college! (but don’t you wish it was?). Sake should be sipped like wine. If you don’t have sake at your neighborhood supermarket, you can order some from True Sake online.
  • Serve pupus with some “opposites”. If one pupu is salty, serve another that’s a little sweet. If another dish is fishy like sushi, offer another that has some vinegar like pickled ginger. These pallete contrasts will be a party in your mouth!
  • A party is only as good as its weakest link so be mindful of the overall environment for your party. Play suitable background music and have some decorations to set the mood. If you’re having a Super Bowl party or something like that, then skip the music but do include some decor and plates, napkins and cups that have the colors of the teams.
  • Take things one step further and add a theme to your party. Themes like the 80’s, a luau, Star Wars, etc will make a good party great! Let your guests know the theme ahead of time so they can start to get excited and prepared for the party. See our article about throwing a Hawaiian luau theme party for more ideas.
  • Always make more than enough food. And always have backup foods handy like frozen pizzas, party wings or Hawaiian taro chips and dips that can be made in minutes in case you start running out of food.

Kalua Pork Slider Recipe

Kalua Pork Slider with Hawaiian Sweet Bread and Cole Slaw

If you’re trying to decide what to serve at you next party, especially if you’re thinking of doing a pupu party, these kailua pork sliders are a must try! It combines the best of many worlds. It has a burger format, which is classically American. It contains kailua pork, which is awesomely Hawaiian. And it contains veggies, albeit coleslaw, to keep things healthy (not really, but we’re just trying to justify it here). The bottom line is that your guests will love them and it’ll make whatever party you’re serving them at even better!

Ingredients:

  • 1 (4 pound) pork shoulder roast
  • 1 Tbs Liquid Smoke
  • 1 Tbs Hawaiian Salt
  • 20 Slider buns (Mini)
  • butter (as needed)

Coleslaw –

  • 1 small head cabbage (shredded)
  • 3 medium carrots (shredded)
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar

Put the pork roast into the slow cooker. Our in “Liquid Smoke”, add the Hawaiian Salt. Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours or until the roast shreds easily with a fork.

Take the roast out of the slow cooker, and shred using two forks. Place the shredded meat back into the slow cooker and toss with the juices.

To make the coleslaw- In a large bowl combine shredded cabbage and carrots. In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar. Mix well, and pour over the cabbage mixture and toss to coat.

Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Spread the inside of both halves of the sliders buns with butter. Place buttered side down into the skillet and toast until golden brown. Spoon pulled pork onto the bottom half of a slider bun, spoon on coleslaw with a slotted spoon, and place on the top half of the bun.

The assemble as pictured, serve and enjoy!

Heat Things Up with a Holiday Luau Hawaiian Party

holiday-luau-hawaiian-party

The Holidays are a time of love, laughter and celebration with friends and family. And what better way to have a good time than to have a holiday party? And if it’s cold where you live, why not heat things up with a good ol’ fashion Hawaiian theme luau party? It’s easier than you think and if you follow these 3 super simple rules, you’ll throw a party everyone is sure to remember.

Rule #1: Wear Hawaiian Clothing

luau-groupThis is easiest way to way to get your party off to a proper start. Nothing says “Aloha!” more than happy people in loud Hawaiian shirts and bold tropical dresses. So be sure to have your guests wear their favorite Aloha shirt or dress (especially red or green ones) to your party. Make it mandatory! And to kick it up a notch, lei your friends with real or fake colorful leis or flowers.

Tip: Single women traditionally wear a flower behind the right ear. If a woman is taken, she should wear it behind her left ear.

Rule #2: Create a Festive Atmosphere

One fast and easy way to create a tropical party vibe is to play Hawaiian or island party music. You can play traditional, contemporary or novelty Hawaiian music available on iTunes, Amazon or any other number of sources.

To add some visual pizazz to your party, decorate the party area with real or fake flowers and grass table skirts. And don’t forget to use tropical looking plates, cups and napkins. If you can’t find tropical designs, simple bright colorful yellow or red items are also very convincing.

Tip: Tiki torches are an awesome eye-catching prop that will add some enchantment to an outdoor party.

Rule #3: Serve Hawaiian Food

It’s not a party until you bust out the food. This can make or break your party so don’t want to disappoint your guests on this one. You can find a ton of luau food recipes to suit your tastes and cooking abilities. Here are a few basic stables to use as a starting point listed in order of importance.

Kalua Pig – From our experiences, this is a must have. A luau without kalua pig is like Thanksgiving without turkey and stuffing. Do whatever it takes to get this on your menu. (see recipe)

kalua-pig-recipe

Kalua Pig

Tropical Drinks – Tasty tropical drinks are the lifeblood of your party. All you need is a little mai tai mix from your nearby supermarket, ice, rum and a blender. Add some colorful flare with some punch syrup and add a drink umbrella and some sliced pineapple. And if you don’t really feel like trying, just go old school with some (coconut) rum and Coke from your younger days.

Poi – Perhaps the food most associated with Hawaii is poi. It is an acquired taste, as most people don’t care for it the first time. If you can order it online, we recommend doing so. But if you are sure poi will gross out your guests, then you can substitute it with sweet potatos or rice. Both are commonly served at luaus in Hawaii.

Mahi Mahi or other Fish – Fish is another common luau staple. The easy thing to do is get some frozen mahi mahi fillets from your local supermarket then bake them in the oven and serve it with tartar sauce.

Lomi Lomi Salmon – This dish consists of salted salmon, diced raw tomatoes, onions and green onions all mixed together. Many people put lomi lomi salmon recipe in their poi to give it more flavor.

lomi lomi salmon

Lomi Lomi Salmon

Lau lau – This is another popular dish but it is also really hard to make. It is made of beef, pork or fish and taro wrapped in ti leaves and banana leaves then steamed for hours until the ti leaves because super soft. If you are hardcore, make this. If you aren’t hardcore, buy it. If it’s not available to buy, skip it.

Haupia – This is a tasty coconut putting made of coconut milk, sugar and starch. If that sounds like rocket science to you, then we suggest you just order powdered haupia mix over the Internet. Just add water. It’s easier than making brownies.

PokePoke recipe (poh-keh) is raw fish seasoned with salt, seaweed, onions and some other oils and spices. Think of it as sashimi cubes mixed with a bunch of stuff. If your friends don’t like sashimi and sushi, they probably won’t like poke.

shoyu-ahi-poke

Shoyu Ahi Poke

Final Thoughts:

Remember that this article should serves as merely a starting point for your planning. Here are a few more Hawaiian luau recipe ideas for you. Ultimately, use your own creativity and imagination to make your party something you’re completely comfortable and happy with. You can serve just pizza and still have a great “Hawaiian Shirt Party”.

Diner En Blanc

At the last minute, the location is given to thousands of friends and acquaintances who have been patiently waiting to learn the “Dîner en Blanc’s” secret place. Thousands of people, dressed all in white, and conducting themselves with the greatest decorum, elegance, and etiquette, all meet for a mass “chic picnic” in a public space.

Over the course of an evening, the diners enhance the function and value of their city’s public space by participating in the unexpected.
Beyond the spectacle and refined elegance of the dinner itself, guests are brought together from diverse backgrounds by a love of beauty and good taste.
Le Dîner en Blanc recalls the elegance and glamour of court society, and diners engage one another knowing they are taking part in a truly magical event.
There are no disruptions: no car traffic, no pedestrian traffic, except for the occasional amazed and astonished looks from passersby at the scene unfolding before them. And we, as they, wonder whether it’s all not a dream…

Born 25 years ago in Paris…

Launched with just a handful of friends by François Pasquier over 25 years ago, Paris’ Dîner en Blanc now assembles nearly 15,000 people each year. The French capital’s most prestigious sites have played host to it: the Pont des Arts, the Eiffel Tower site, Place Vendôme, the Château de Versailles, the Esplanade de Notre-Dame, the Esplanade des Invalides, the periphery of the Place de l’Étoile, the Champs-Élysées, Place de la Concorde and this year:  Le Louvre Pyramid and the Trocadéro Esplanade at the ame time! The Paris police tend to tolerate this ‘wild’ gathering, if not perhaps even wishing they could join in!

The above is courtesy of Diner En Blanc
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It began with  everyone meeting at an assigned pickup point, then after receiving free champagne or wine, we all boarded a bus (fully air conditioned) and let the mystery begin. Along the way, everyone kept guessing where the event would be. As we passed landmark places, all you hear is “Oh Oh, it must be …..”
Finally, after an hours drive, we end up in beautiful Ko Olina….. over 1,100 people gathered to end a spectacular dinner, music, friends, fun and pure excitement.

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For those who didn’t want to buy the white tables, chairs, bring silverware and the food…..you could have opted to get a sponsor table and hire everyone. Thanks to some great friends, all this arrange in advance where it allowed me to just “show up”.
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Champagne, Cheese dishes, Pork dishes, Fish dish, assorted veggies and a special dessert was served. Its always nice to enjoy these events in the company of friends.
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Until next year……in the mean time pack your all white clothes in a safe place.