Akalei Designs is Hawaii's only designer of handcrafted Kumihimo beaded Hawaiian Lei. With over 100 unique designs we were recently awarded “Best Beaded Lanyard” from The American Kumihimo Society (2023) for our complex braid structures. In addition our silk Hawaiian necklace is being showcased in a commercial for the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement Pop-Up Makēkē Market. And another positive compliment was three of our designs were selected in a juried art exhibit in Oahu by The Hawaiian Handweavers Hui. This public recognition reflects how our unique and high quality necklace lei are gaining attention. All our designs are handcrafted on Maui. We are unique in that we are able to incorporate aspects of floral lei into modern forever lei using glass beads with designs normally only seen in the shell lei made famous on the island of Ni’iHua (The Forbidden Island).
Black, Red & Yellow, Brown Picasso Island Style Necklace - 26"
This necklace lei is perfect for those in attendance at our local Merrie Monarch Hula Festival. For local Hawaii residents the only time this style of necklace is seen might be in a museum or a gallery. It is because this style of necklace are traditionally made on the Hawaiian island of Ni'iHau (The Forbidden Island) with tiny shells only found there. The blend of red, yellow and black are subtle yet the segmented design is truly fascinating. It is finished with a strong dark silver toned acrylic magnetic end cap. The combination of segments was created by Phyllis Strauss of Luna Fish Studio and I am grateful for her design ideas.
This necklace was inspired by those beautiful necklaces, but was handcrafted using hundreds of glass beads from Japan that were then loaded onto multiple nylon cords and woven together on a wooden Marudai stand. It is finished with a strong gold acrylic magnet end cap to ensure it is secure. The necklace feels wonderful to wear and requires little to almost no care by using a clean dry towel every few months to keep dust free and bright.
Akalei is the Hawaiian word for "bead reflections" which truly describes this unique style only available here on Maui. We specialize in designing a wide range of modern yet familiar Hawaiian lei. Please send an email to email@example.com.
Kumihimo is an ancient Japanese braid making technique that creates beautiful and strong interlaced cords. This art form goes back hundreds of years as braids were made for use in armor of Japanese samurai warriors. In modern times these braids are designed as belts (obijime) used on kimonos.
It is my goal to provide you with a long lasting, beautiful piece of jewelry that you will enjoy wearing for years to come. I take great care in the construction of my pieces to ensure just that. Please note: colors may slightly differ from their appearance on your display, as it depends on your monitor settings.
Please send me a message with questions or comments.