9 Designers, Boutiques, and Trendsetters in Honolulu Defining The Creative Path

In recent years, the Honolulu artistic community has seen a flourishing in its craft. Local designers have launched their own brands and young creatives have returned from their time away to create new and exciting things that are shaping the way the community is growing. In a collaborative spirit, these young brands and stores are showcasing the talent of the city, not only for visitors to see but for locals to appreciate and consume. The farm-to-table movement is also expanding into other industries as we see an increasing interest for locally sourced and hand-made items. Here are some of the designers and boutiques that are shaping this path in Honolulu.


1. Roberta Oaks


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Originally from Missouri, Roberta was inspired by the mid-century modern Hawaiian design and retro style to create a contemporary version of the traditional Aloha wear. The modern fit, clean shapes and bold prints with strong colors are locally produced in Hawai’i. She is said to be the first person to give a modern twist to the classic Aloha shirt. The store, located in the heart of Honolulu’s Chinatown, also features other stylish Hawaiian creations like Get Salty, a hip hat brand very popular on the island, or the fresh Kai scents, featuring the striking smell of Hawaiian Gardenia. 19 N. Pauahi St., Honolulu. – www.robertaoaks.com


2. Issa de Mar




Created by two friends, Marissa Eveland and Melissa Jasniy, that lived and surfed on the North Shore of Oahu, Issa de Mar features fabulous swimming wear for the active woman. Their creations are a graceful blend of fashion and function. The different designs appeal to a woman that wants to feel sexy but also comfortable and the brand was just launched in 2013. Although they don’t have a store, the line can be found in different stockists around Oahu, including the shop at The Modern Honolulu hotel. www.issademar.com


3. Owens & Co


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A space presenting a curated collection of hard-to-find and handmade merchandise from independent designers, Owens & Co is a delightfully summery store perfect for creative minds looking for inspiration and fun objects. Founder Missy Owens opened the store with the intention of supporting local designers and also showcasing the finds of cool and interesting objects found around the world. She has also done a few collaborations with local creatives to produce unique pieces sold at the store, like the purse in the cover photo that I bought and totally love! A colorful space that is well worth a visit. 1152 Nu’uanu Avenue. –www.owensandcompany.com


4. Hound & Quail


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Started in early 2011 by Mark Pei and Travis Flazer, Hound & Quail is a unique shop featuring mostly vintage curiosities. From taxidermy to an old letterpress to whimsical furniture, this store has a great collection of unusual items from Hawaii, the mainland and around the world. Everything has a story and the person on shift can explain where every item came from. Browse around even if you’re not buying to get a sense of what Hawaii was like 50 years ago. 920 Maunakea St. – www.houndandquail.com


5. in4mation


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The first Hawaiian street fashion store in Hawaii opened back in 2002, in4mation was created by four friends and former pro skaters and surfers Ryan Arakaki, Todd Shimabuku, Jun Jo and Keith Kanagusuku. This store embodies Hawaii’s street culture featuring accessories and fashion wear for a younger and dynamic audience, the only one of its kind we encountered during our visit to Oahu. 1154 Nu’uanu Ave. – www.in4mants.com


6. Echo & Atlas


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A brand new store in Chinatown, Echo & Atlas is a place that celebrates and embraces Hawaii’s casual sophistication, reinterpreting the understated aesthetic and local lifestyle through a carefully edited selection of women’s apparel, accessories, and homeware. The product selection is geared towards a sophisticated beach girl that’s looking for alternative wear and accessories. 1 N Hotel St. – www.echoandatlas.com


7. Ginger 13


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Ginger13 is a jewelry line created by local designer Cindy Yokoyama. After 10 years in the market, Cindy finally decided to open a store in 2004 to offer a full Ginger13 experience. The mismatch earrings are a popular choice, but in the store, she also has other styles and unique designs. As an artist, she has combined her passion for art with the Hawaiian style and created a whimsical store that captures right away the attention of the passersby featuring mostly her handcrafted jewelry pieces. 22 S. Pauahi St. – www.ginger13.com


8. The Tin Can Mailman


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A very particular one, Tin Can Mailman is an antiques and collectible objects store with all things Hawaii memorabilia. For nostalgics gatherers, in this place you can find from books to pin-up girls to postcards to vintage posters showcasing the life and collective imagination of Hawaii back in the day. Anything and everything can be found here and you can easily spend hours browsing just a section of this tiny store. 1026 Nu’uanu Ave. – www.tincanmailman.net


9. Paiko




A little outside of the Downtown’s Chinatown core, Paiko is a beautiful botanical boutique located in the up and coming Kaka’ako neighborhood. Since the POW! WOW! Festival has been taking place in this area for years, the neighborhood is becoming more and more attractive for locals and visitors. Restaurants, bars, cafés and trendy stores have opened doors to satisfy the market and Paiko is not the exception. Here you can find all kinds of locally sourced plants for your home or office and there’s also a cute cafe attached to it if you’re just wanting to sit and relax. 675 Auahi St. – www.paikohawaii.com




Hayo Magazine
Hayo Magazine

An indie coffee table–style magazine for travelers curious about arts and culture. To contribute, submit your article pitch to info@hayo.co

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