iTunes RSS Stitcher Facebook Twitter

It’s All About The Hawaiian Shirt And Where To Find A Private Maui Ocean Excursion: Show 31


The Hawaii Travel Podcast Show 31 for Tuesday July 30th 2013.  This week’s show we’ll talk about the origin of the classic Hawaiian shirt, including bargain hunting tips, and we’ll discuss private diving excursions on Maui. All that and more on this episode of The  Hawaii Travel Podcast.


Janet from Atlanta emailed us.  She wrote…

Dear Jennifer and Dan,

I love the podcast.  My question is about Hawaiian shirts.  I am visiting Oahu in September and am thinking of bringing vintage Hawaiian clothing back home for everyone on my Christmas gift list.  Pretty much all of my family and friends know I am crazy about Hawaii, and I thought it would be a fitting gift to bring Hawaiian shirts back. Any tips on here to buy Hawaiian shirts on a budget?  And, do you have any info on how Hawaiian shirts became so popular?

Like so many things in Hawaiian culture, the Hawaiian shirts came from immigrants who came to work in the sugar and pineapple plantations.  Japanese people came to work on the plantations, they brought their clothes with them, and that included of course Kimonos made of silk.  Also, Filipino silk shirts were brought over, as well as Chinese shirts.

That brings us to a Chinese merchant named Ellery Chun.  He worked at a store in Waikiki called King-Smith Clothiers and Dry Goods. He would sew these beautiful shirts from leftover material from Kimonos. This was back in the 30s. They were dubbed Aloha shirts by The Honolulu Advertiser which was the largest daily newspaper in Hawaii.  The shirts were a hit, and people started buying them all up, and that led to “copy cats” popping up, and now they are ubiquitous to the Hawaiian lifestyle.

Aloha ShirtWhat do we know about Hawaii in the summer?  It gets hot, right?  Well, In the 40s, the Honolulu Chamber of Commerce conducted a study. They wanted to find out what business clothes were comfortable for workers to ere during the summer months.  Hawaiian shirts won out.  City employees were actually not allowed to wear Aloha shirts until Aloha Week was founded.  Aloha Week was established by the Junior Chamber of Commerce.  There were a big celebration of the Hawaiian Culture.  Aloha Week later turned into Aloha Festivals, which are free celebrations.  September is a great time to visit because that is when Aloha Festivals take place!  You will should be able to find some great shirts there.

Other places to shop for vintage shirts….

We have talked about Bailey’s Antiques & Aloha Shirts on epsiode 5 of the Hawaii Travel Podcast .  They have quite a selection–over 15,000 vintage shirts! The location of Bailey’s Antiques & Aloha Shirts is 517 Kapahulu Avenue, Honolulu.

Goodwill and other thrift shops.


The Ocean Project specializes in small group ocean excursions on Maui.  This is perfect for families.  Kids will love exploring everything Hawaii’s oceans have to offer.  Guides let kids have a hands-on experience and will teach surfing, diving, and everything you need to know about how to keep the ocean and it’s life healthy.


Hawaiian Humane Society
Saturday, August 10
4 pm to 6:30 pm

Hawaiian Humane Society’s PetWalk – Hawaii’s biggest charity walk for the animals.  PetWalk actually takes place on October 6th, but they are having a kickoff rally at the Human Society on August 10th.  If you love animals as much as we do, and want to help a good organization help homeless animals, checkout their website at and throw them a few bucks of you can.

Bring a printout of your fundraising page that shows you have collected at least one donation and get a special gift at the kick off rally.

Hawaiian Humane Society is located at 2700 Waialae Avenue in Honolulu.  Call 808-356-2225  for more info.


Subscribe Share

Subscribe in iTunes RSS Stitcher Radio Facebook Twitter






Planning your dream Hawaii vacation starts right here with the Hawaii Travel Podcast.