12 First-Time Made in Hawai‘i Festival Vendors We Can’t Wait to Shop

Add these Made in Hawai‘i Festival newbies to your can’t-miss list before you shop Aug. 18–20.


With hundreds of Island makers on its roster, the annual Made in Hawai‘i Festival, happening Aug. 18 through 20, is easily one of my favorite events for shopping local. And this year, I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek at some of the newbies, aka the fashion, home, gift, pet and art vendors making their first-ever appearance at the Made in Hawai‘i Festival. Here’s a handy roundup of some of my top picks and the fun new goodies they’ll be offering.


In light of the recent Maui wildfires, the Made in Hawai‘i Festival will donate 10% of profits from ticket sales and 100% of profits from the Made in Hawai‘i Festival x HiLife T-shirt (below) sales to the Hawai‘i Community Foundation’s Maui Strong Fund.


Mihf X Hilife Tee

Photo: Courtesy of Made in Hawai‘i Festival


SEE ALSO: Your Insider Guide to the 29th Made in Hawai‘i Festival


1. Kris Hawai‘i


Kris Hawaii 2 Credit Nicole Naone Copy

Photos: Nicole Naone


I’m a big fan of O‘ahu artist Kris Pūnua’s tropical art prints featuring beautiful lei and lounging wāhine, so I was stoked to see her expand her line with new lifestyle products. Be sure to check out her knit blankets, Turkish towels and glassware featuring her signature Island blooms.


Booth #918, krishawaii.com, @krishawaii


SEE ALSO: These Hawai‘i Designers and Boutiques Are Donating 100% of Proceeds to Maui’s Recovery


2. Ao Organics


Made in Hawaii Festival Ao Organics woman holding basket

Photos: Li‘i Photo


When starting her skincare line, mother and domestic violence survivor Chelsa Davis set out to create products made from fresh, nourishing ingredients—that would double as vehicles for self-care. Snap up the Honoka‘a brand’s top sellers, including its anti-aging Iliwai Hydration Serum and Olena and Honey Gel Cleanser, featuring local organic honey and turmeric, while you can, and don’t forget to snag some of its ultra-popular sugar scrubs, which are sold out online.


Booth #1619, aoorganicshawaii.com, @ao.organicshawaii



3. Paradisus


Paradisus Duo Credit Tk

Photos: Christa Funk


Much like how Linda Ueda and Akemi Ueda Jensen, the mother-daughter design duo behind O‘ahu jewelry label Paradisus, work in harmony to bring their Hawaii-inspired creations to life, so too do the elements of their newest collection. Called Ke Alo Ka Mahina, after our connection to the phases of the moon, its stunning 925 silver earrings and pendants are reminders of the importance of balance, observation and harmony in Hawaiian life.


Booths #2315, 2316, paradisusjewelry.com, @paradisusjewelry


4. Nake‘u Awai Designs


Nakeu Awai Designs aloha shirt and sundress

Photos: Nake‘u Awai Designs


2023 marks 50 years of celebrating Hawaiian culture through fashion for designer Nake‘u Awai and his eponymous label. In honor of the golden anniversary, the legacy brand’s summer collection features six fab prints, including the popular Gardenia and ‘Ulu styles and the early 2000s favorite Wana ‘Ohe Kapala style. The festival will also be the first opportunity to shop the new Crownflower Butterflies print sundress, created by artist Richard Vyse, which depicts the monarch butterfly as a beautiful woman.


Booth #I-006, nakeuawaidesigns.com, @nakeuawaidesigns


SEE ALSO: 3 New Local Hawai‘i Swimwear Brands to Sizzle in This Summer


5. Formidably Impressed


Formidably Impressed greeting cards and washi tape

Photos: Formidably Impressed, Chris Balidio


With greeting cards topped with playful phrases, such as “You Tickle My Pickle” and “Dad Bods Are Bods Too,” the team behind this local stationery line has mastered the perfect balance of sweetness and sass. I’ll be scooping up its freshly released washi tape trio and mahalo and aloha card sets.


Booth #2218, formidablyimpressed.com, @formidablyimpressed



6. Dezigns by Kamohoali‘i


Made in Hawaii Festival Designs by Kamohoalii models

Photo: Lani Walters


With runway showings in Paris, Milan and London, Waimea designer Micah Kamohoali‘i has been steadily building upon his family’s rich artistic legacy (the kumu hula comes from a long line of kapa makers­) by sharing the beauty of Hawaiian culture through his bold fashions. Keep an eye out for his new Pelekeahialoa and Kihanuiluluonamoku collections, inspired by Hawai‘i Island’s powerful volcanic eruptions and the mo‘o that protected the sacred chiefs of Hawai‘i, plus an exciting collaborative jewelry collection created with Maui Divers Jewelry.


Booth #121, 122, dbkamohoalii.com, @dezignsbykamohoalii


SEE ALSO: Mikinola Opens a Gorgeous New Hawai‘i Kai Boutique


7. Jahier Studio


Jahier Studio enamel pins and keychain

Photos: Chloe Selarque


Clocking in at just 1 ½ inches, Chloe Selarque’s charming postage stamp-style enamel pins, featuring illustrations of Hawaiian landscapes and flora and fauna, are tiny treasures you can tote with you. Keep an eye out for the new collab collection, made with fellow vendor Double Happiness, which includes scrunchies, wristlets, lanyards and Swedish dishcloths featuring native coastal plants.


Booth #2123, jahierstudio.com, @jahier_studio



8. YūMono


Yumono gold earrings

Photos: Alice van Schaik


Earring stacks are having a major moment, and few cool brands are cooler for lining your lobes than Honolulu-based YūMono, whose sleek claw and stud styles come outfitted with diamond-lined bars, chains and gemstones. Designer Keiko Akamine will debut new fall styles at the festival, including “poke-free” gold hoop earrings, along with limited-edition Montana sapphire versions of her bestselling claws.


Booth #1803, yumonodesign.com, @yumonodesign



9. Thick Mint Co.


Thick Mint Co three people wearing sweatshirts

Photo: Claire Lau


Offering a refreshing take on ocean-inspired design, Kona-based Thick Mint Co.’s sweatshirts and tees are exactly what you’d want to throw on after a day in the salty Pacific. Organic and often abstract, designer Claire Lau’s puzzlelike graphics give a stylish nod to the interconnectedness of nature and life as a whole.


Booth # 1126, thickmintco.com, @thickmintco



10. Kahua ‘Āina


Kahua Aina children on surfboard

Photos: Courtesy of Kahua ‘Āina


The idea for Kahua ‘Āina was born when Hilo parents Jordan and Keahi Camara were trying to help their four keiki connect with the ‘aina in fun, everyday ways. Now, along with their signature pillows, which resemble local reef fish, birds and shells, they offer stickers, enamel pins and Hawai‘i-inspired homegoods. Look out for their newest release—adorable palaka-print children’s floaties.


Booth #2321, kahuaaina.com, @kahuaaina



11. Dis-and-Bark


Dis And Bark man woman and dog

Photo: Dis-And-Bark


I don’t even have a pup, and I’m obsessed with ‘Ewa Beach brand Dis-and-Bark’s plush dog toys, which owners Leah and TJ Lukela design to look like popular Island treats. Along with crowd favorites shaped like laulau, green beer bottles and boxes of powdered doughnuts, the duo will release Dis-and-Bark’s first reusable shopping bag and its latest towel.


Booth #125, disandbark.com, @disandbark


SEE ALSO: Honolulu Pride: LGBTQIA+ Events in August 2023


12. Live Long and Plant


Live Long And Plant tote bags handing plants

Photos: Mariah Lea Photo


Ellise Uyema left the corporate world to pursue her passion—sharing her love of plants with others. Along with leading DIY moss art workshops and hosting her podcast, Planty of Friends, she also launched an online boutique that offers plant accessories for the home, gift boxes for plant lovers and greenery-themed fashion accessories, such as the festival-exclusive canvas totes she’ll be offering in five fun designs.


Booth #2112, livelongandplant.com, @livelongandplant



Made in Hawai‘i Festival, $8, Hawai‘i Convention Center, 1801 Kalākaua Ave., Aug. 18–20, madeinhawaiifestival.com@madeinhi. See the full list of Made in Hawai‘i Festival vendors here.