News and reviews of made on Maui products and Maui-based companies and success stories. Also featuring island shopping guides

Posts tagged ‘Girl’

Mauidivegirl Designs Makes a Splash with Unique Jewelry

maui dive girl necklace jewelry braceletEverybody loves a story.  Ten years ago, Chicago native Lisa Lappe was doing the corporate thing – working a desk job as a graphic designer.  She had dreams about warm weather, spending time under the sea and living a simpler life.  Then one day, she just up and moved to Maui.  Now that’s quite a story.  Lisa is now an avid SCUBA diver, and is living her own dream as a full time jewelry designer at Mauidivegirl Designs.  She shares with us her story:

glass bubble necklace diver gift

Lisa models her Breathe Bubble Necklace and Earrings, Inspired by her love of scuba diving.

Maui Made: How did you get into jewelry design?

Lisa Lappe: I have a BFA in Graphic Design and worked in the corporate world for 15 years before moving to Maui. I enjoyed making jewelry as a hobby, but enjoyed it so much that I decided to try make it my full time job. Everything is handmade by me and it’s truly become my passion.

MM: Where do you get your inspiration?  

LL: My inspiration comes from the surrounding nature of the Hawaiian islands both above and below the sea with it’s life, texture, color and patterns. My designs combine natural shell, lava, coral, pearls, gemstones, sparkling crystals and story telling into island inspired, budget-friendly wearables, gifts, favors and keepsakes.

MM: What are your most popular designs? 

LL: The Aloha Wish Necklaces and Adjustable Cord Bracelets are the best sellers in the boutiques. Everyone loves a story and I try and incorporate my background as a graphic designer into jewelry designs with good packaging.

The best seller on Etsy is the Mother Daughter Necklace Set. It’s meaningful and people take the time to read the story online. I wanted to come up with something unique and meaningful for gift giving.  The Aloha script necklace is also a popular item.

MM: Any Etsy tips for people just starting out?

LL: Be patient, sales don’t happen overnight, and also be active, listing new items, relisting, posting to Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter. And really good photography and descriptions are essential.

maui dive girl jewelry craft fair boothMM: What’s next for Maui Dive Girl?

LL: I’m hoping to keep expanding into other boutiques and locations. I’m currently on the Big Island, Maui, Oahu, Japan, New York, and Canada. I will be at the Haleakala Waldorf Holiday Faire on December 7th, 2013 on Maui and World Whale Day Made on Maui Fair in Kihei, Saturday, February 15th, 2014.

Mahalo to Lisa for sharing her inspirational story!

For more on Mauidivegirl Designs, check out

 The Etsy Shop

Facebook

Twitter

or find Mauidivegirl Designs in these retailers:

MAUI:

The Enchantress Boutique, Wailea (at The Shops of Wailea)

Collections Boutique, Makawao

Neil Pryde, Kahului

Café@LaPlage, Kihei (in Dolphin Plaza)

Ono Gelato, Kihei (Azeka Shopping Center)

Ono Gelato, Lahaina (Front Street)

The Bikini Market, Kihei (Kukui Mall)

Hale Zen, Lahaina (Dickenson Street)

Whole Foods Market, Kahului (in Maui Mall)

Pacific Whale Foundation, Ma`alaea

Ma`alaea General Store and Café, Ma`alaea

Spa Moana at Hyatt Regency Maui, Ka`anapali

Maui Memories, Wailea (Wailea Gateway Center)

Paia Mercantile, Paia

Home Remedies Interior Design and Remodeling, Kihei

Maui Dreams Dive Co., Kihei

HAWAII:

Persimmon Boutique, Waikoloa (in Queen’s Marketplace)

OAHU:

Whole Foods Market, Honolulu (Kahala Mall)

Whole Foods Market, Kailua (Kailua Town Center)

NEW YORK:

Hanalei & Kula’s, Ocean Beach, NY

CANADA:

The Hyve Hair Studio, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan

JAPAN:

Moanalu Co., Ltd., Osaka, Japan

Mango Green Project Japan

FIJI:

Pineapple Boutique, Nadi, Fiji Islands

maui dive girl jewelry design hawaii seashell

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Maui-Based Clothing Designers

For a fairly small island, Maui has its share of talented clothing and swimwear designers and seamstresses :  Please add a comment below if you or someone you know should be added to this list!

Maggie Couloumbe Dress, Davis Chu Photography

Maggie Couloumbe Designs, Davis Chu Photography

Maggie Coulombe –  Cutting-edge women’s fashions 

If you are lucky enough to be wearing a Maggie Coulombe dress, all eyes are on you. She has dressed celebrities on and off the red carpet and her designs have been featured in Elle, Instyle and other fashion and celebrity magazines.  Inspired by her globetrotting lifestyle and the natural beauty of her Hawaiian home, Maggie Coulombe has created a collection that accents the essence of all women. Fashionistas from around the world frequent The Maggie Coulombe Store, located at Whaler’s Village in Kaanapali, Maui, click to shop online. 

Tamara Catz – Contemporary resort clothing, bathing suits, wedding and bridesmaids dresses.  

Born and raised in Argentina, Tamara started designing her own lines at age 18. After traveling the globe with her husband, professional windsurfer Francisco Goya, they decided to settle on Maui.  In 2000, she launched her line with immediate success, selling to boutiques and department stores all over the US and Japan. In 2005, Tamara opened her first boutique in Paia, Maui and two years later she launched her Bridal collection.  In 2013, a second shop was opened in Venice, CA.  Click to shop online.

Red Stripe Blue Floral Dress

Pink and Floral Skater Dress by Box Eleven

BoxEleven –  Handmade women’s clothing and accessories. 

A few years ago, Katie Browne combined a few of her favorite things, fabric, shopping and thrift stores, with a talent for sewing, and started creating unique women’s apparel and handbag designs, which she now sells under the label BoxEleven. On Maui, you can see her designs at Wings Hawaii in Paia, the Hui Noeau shop in Makawao, and on Hawaii Island at Pueo Boutique in Kailua Kona.

Wings Hawaii – Handmade and silkscreened clothes, jewelry. 

Wings Hawaii grew from a school art project at University of Hawaii into one of Maui’s most successful clothing lines.  Wings features a hand-sewn collection, which are designed and fabricated from scratch in their Haiku studio. They are also known for their hand dyed and screen printed line, complete with original artwork.  Wings also has their own jewelry line, each item handmade in the studio.  Visit Wings Hawaii in their beautiful flagship store in Paia, Maui, click for list of stockists, or Click to shop online

Ha Wahine / Cy Maui handpainted silks and Hawaiian designs

Featuring two distinct shops on Maui, Cy Maui in Wailea, at the Shops at Wailea, and Ha Wahine in Wailuku on North Market.  Cy Maui is known for their handpainted silk in flattering cuts and designs, and Ha Wahine, featured Hawaiian-inspired designs on rayon, with each item sewn on Maui.  Give them a call to place your order.

maui girl swimwear ashley camper photography

Maui Girl Fashions, Photo by AshleyCamper.com, as featured in Mokulele in-flight magazine.

Maui Girl Swimwear – Designer boutique bathing suits, sporty mix and match bikinis, coverups

Maui Girl & Co.has been a landmark on the North Shore of Maui for over 30 years. Located in the heart of Paia, Maui Girl & Co., has been voted the “Best Bikini Boutique” of Maui for the last 5 years. Designer and boutique owner, Debbie Kowalski Wilson, has been designing and selling her pieces since the 70’s. She made the switch from vintage reconstructed pieces to bikinis in the early 80s.  Maui Girl Swimwear frequently makes appearances in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues, with a record 14 suits in the 2013 issue. Maui Girl suits are available online, but to make things even easier for mainland customers, the line will be looking to expand to stockists across the country in 2014.

handmade bikini maui hawaii

Pashey Bella’s Royal Bright Purple Lolo Tube Top and Bottoms

Pashey Bella –  handmade sporty swimwear and accessories

Pashey Bella was created by two water girls, born and raised on Maui. At the ages of 14 and 12, Talia and Tehani Gangini, learned how to make bikinis, which blossomed into a small business in 2007 called Manini Gangini Bikinis. Their goal is to design active swimwear that is functional and flattering.   In 2012, they changed the name of the company to Pashey Bella (Pashey being Talia’s middle name and Bella being Tehani’s). While they currently still make all their swimwear by hand in their 400 square foot shared room, this coming January 2014, Pashey Bella will be launching their first collection which will be made in the USA. The line will include all new designs and patterns, and will enable active women to have a functional, active swimwear with good coverage. In addition to designing swimwear, Talia Gangini Decoite started her own jewelry business at the age of 12, and in 2009 became the youngest designer to be featured on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue with a featured necklace.  She also travels the world as a professional stand-up paddler.  Click to shop online.

Girls Sleeveless purple teal dress

Purple and Teal Sleeveless Dress with Dandelion Pocket and adjustable ties

Bitty Bambu-  Modern, handmade children’s clothes and accessories

Bitty Bambu’s designs are influenced by the beauty of the natural environment, and the spirit of childhood.  Designer and seamstress Taryn has a background in Landscape Architecture, but discovered her passion for sewing not long after having kids.  “I enjoy making clothing that is beautiful, colorful, and playful – all the elements that I believe every childhood should be full of.”   Bitty bambu can be found in boutiques around the islands, on the mainland and as far as Australia, and on Etsy.

happy honu skirts

Happy Honu Skirts – Handmade in Hawaii

Happy Honu Maui – colorful, island-inspired children’s clothing and blankets.  

Happy Honu Maui is made in Hawai’i with creative dreams mixed with the aloha warmth of the islands. Maui author, painter, illustrator, designer, teacher, and mom Judi Riley has been known in Hawai’i since the early 1990s for her creative, one-of-a-kind and tropical colored Happy Honu Maui kids clothes and Tiki Tales books. What began as a book series that celebrates the Hawaiian islands, evolved into a whole line of island-inspired, quality, durable and comfy creations for keiki.   Judi Riley’s designs  also include silkscreened shirts, dresses and onesies, all hand-screened on Maui by A Make Believe Company.  Available in boutiques across Hawai’i and on the mainland USA, and click here to visit the website or the Etsy Shop.

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