Akalei Designs is Hawaii's primier designer of handcrafted Kumihimo beaded Hawaiian Lei. Recently featured in Maui on HI Now with POP-Up Mãkeke and Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement. With hundreds of unique designs we were recently awarded “Best Beaded Lanyard” from The American Kumihimo Society (2023) for our complex braid structures. And another positive development in 2023 we had 3 designs selected for 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’ihau (The Forbidden Island).
Blue Two-toned Kumihimo Fiber Necklace Lei and Hat Band - 20"
This elegantly stylish Art Jewelry necklace was woven using various hues of rich blue toned imitation silk fibers in two separate necklaces. Once the necklaces were finished we wove into one thicker but amazingly lightweight necklace. Inspired by Hawaiian Fashion Designer Manaolo, this necklace is unique and versatile. On one braid we combined two packets of Midnight Blue with a 3rd packet of Blue Teal and wove using the "Off-Balance" braiding technique. On the second braid we used that same Blue Teal in the middle and Deep Indigo on the outside edges.
Altogether there are hundreds of strands of imitation silk threads that comprise this piece, leaving it luxurious yet flexible. The braid's spiral effect allows it to be worn tightly as a shorter hat band or stretched out. An extra strong gold toned magnet end allows you to wear with no worry of it falling off. It measures 21" worn, by coiling the spirals you may make it a tighter braid or tug lightly to stretch out a bit more.
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) that are worn as a belt with a kimono.
Customized orders are welcomed - these braids can be made using Japanese Silks and various small (4-6mm) size pearls or semi-precious stones. Please contact me at email@example.com.