Orange County, CA (May 30, 2018): OluKai, the premium, Hawaiian-inspired lifestyle brand launches Hawaiian Blue on May 30, 2018. Each pair of shoes in the small-batch, collection is 100% unique due to being hand crafted, and hand-dyed with indigo plants grown in Hawaii. OluKai partnered with Hawaiian Blue artists Donna Miyashiro and Tokunari Fujibayashi to create beautiful indigo fabric, which is the centerpiece of this limited edition release.
"Working with Donna and Tokunari has been an awesome experience." Commented Blaine Conrad, Vice President of Product, OluKai, "Creating the hand-dyed fabric with the Hawaiian Blue team ensures that we're delivering a truly one-of-a-kind pair of shoes, and creating product that really is made of Hawaii."
The shoes are created in a closed loop sustainable system in which the artists plant and grow the indigo, and then harvest the plant to create the dye. It takes two months from seed to first harvest. The leaves are then soaked in water to ferment for approximately 24 hours, an iridescent sheen forms on the surface, the leaves are removed and the liquid is stirred and oxidized until it turns dark blue in color. The liquid is then poured into a flat-bottomed container to allow the indigo paste to settle, the liquid is skimmed off the top until only the paste remains. The resulting paste can then be used to dye fabric with. The process of dying all of the fabric needed for this collection took 9 months.
"The process of dyeing the fabric with the Indigo is mesmerizing!" said Donna Miyashiro, Artist, Hawaiian Blue, "To see it emerge as a yellowish green and transform into a beautiful hue similar to a twilight sky is an experience that personally never ceases to amaze."
OluKai discovered the Hawaiian Blue artists through the brand's ongoing partnership with Pow! Wow! and connected with them through the artist community in Kaha'ako, Oahu. OluKai was drawn to the fabric because the shades of blue reflect the different hues of the Pacific Ocean, aligning with the brand's "Anywhere Aloha" mantra.
Hawaiian Blue is exclusive to OluKai.com with 500 pairs available in the women's popular Pehuea style, and 200 available in the men's Kahu style. For more information, or to order a pair of Hawaiian Blue visit OluKai.com.
OluKai is a sought after lifestyle brand that believes everyone, no matter where they are, can live Aloha. OluKai products feature thoughtful design elements and handcrafted details inspired by the ocean lifestyle. We are committed to partnering with best-of-class retailers with whom we share an unwavering pursuit of excellence. OluKai’s spirit is shared by others through the Ama OluKai Foundation, a 501(c)(3) created to formalize the company's giveback initiatives. Every OluKai sold supports Ama OluKai Foundation's mission in Hawaii. For more information visit www.OluKai.com or #AnywhereAloha.