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Designer Profiles: These Hawai‘i Brands That Give Back Will Have You Looking and Feeling Fab

Feel good fashion.




feel good fashion

photo: courtesy of avela


The Designers

Gadea Pérez-Andújar and Ali Bayless became fast friends while studying marine biology in Australia. Inspired by block print fabrics they came across while traveling in Spain, they launched Avela in 2015 in hopes of supporting the dwindling artform.



Ali Bayless (left) and Gadea Pérez-Andújar


The Goods

The Kaimukī-based label is best known for its textile products—scarves, bandanas, pareos and more—featuring intricate floral and geometric block prints. All are ethically made by artisans in India using eco-friendly dyes and 100% organic cotton.


How They Give Back

Avela donates 3% of its annual profits to Meher Road Foundation, a nonprofit in India whose Women’s Skills Development Program supports female artisans through upcycling projects that provide training, mentorship and income.



photo: courtesy of kenna reed


Why It’s Important

“We want to support something we believe in,” says Bayless. “We love these arts that people still make with their hands. In this era of fast fashion we appreciate the detail that goes into these prints. We want to support those artists.”


Up Next

Keep an eye out for new beach blankets and travel pouches.






feel good fashion

photo: courtesy of love me knots


The Designers

Sophia Vuong Pai (below left) and Jaclyn Park bonded over their shared love of animals and fashion while waitressing at a local luxury hotel. When Pai’s dog Gucci died, the duo honored her beloved pet by launching Love Me Knots in 2013 with a simple knotted bracelet.


love me knots

photo: samantha feyen


The Goods

Simple-yet-striking fashion and fine jewelry made in Honolulu. Think sleek ball chain necklaces, diamond-studded bar earrings, and on-trend pearl and coin pendants.


How They Give Back

Anywhere from 10% to 20% percent of profits are donated to local and national charities that provide food, shelter and care for animals in need, including Paws of Hawai‘i and Equine 808 Horse Rescue Hawai‘i.



A post shared by ♡ ME KNOTS JEWELRY (@lovemeknotshi) on


Why It’s Important

“All animals deserve a loving family,” says Pai. “They’re so loyal and don’t expect anything back. And they don’t have a voice. We want all animals to have the love that Gucci had.”


Up Next

Snap up pieces from the newly released Ying Chi’s Jewelry Box Collection, inspired by the elegant styles worn by Pai’s grandmother.





Read more stories by Brie Thalmann



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