July 13th, 2016 / posted by paularath

If you’re looking for something fun and different to do this Sunday morning, July 17, please join me at Na Mea Hawaii in Ward Warehouse for Tea and Talk Story at 10:30 a.m.

Tea and Talk Story is the brainchild of Nake’u Awai, my multi-talented friend (former Broadway dancer, fashion designer, choreographer, show producer, artist) who has a way of turning everything he does into a party. The flyer image may give you a clue – and if you’ve ever attended one of his Christmas fashion shows, you know what I mean!

Tea and Talk Story flyer

Nake’u asked me to speak about fashion, but I declined. Fashion is no longer the focus of my life. What is? Palama Settlement.

Palama is my family’s legacy. My grandparents, James Arthur and Ragna Helsher Rath, were the founders of Palama Settlement. My father was born there and was an emeritus Palama Settlement board member until he died. I am now an emeritus board member and will probably remain so until I die. The Palama maroon runs through the Rath veins!

Of course, if you would like to talk about fashion or travel, we can always do that too. Tea and Talk story is a relaxed, evolving and, I hope, effervescent, event.

See you Sunday!

- Paula Rath

July 8th, 2016 / posted by paularath


A drive out Makapuu way can bring you back in touch with why we live Hawaii nei.

A drive out Makapuu way can bring you back in touch with why we live Hawaii nei.

It’s often hard to find a balance between hard work and rest and renewal.

We seem to have the idea that going holo holo must mean a trip away, at least to a Neighbor Island. But, you know, when you look up holo holo in the Hawaiian dictionary, it says “to go for a walk, ride or sail; to go out for pleasure, stroll, promenade.”

Can’t we, then, go holo holo any time, even here in busy Honolulu?

I think it can be as simple as changing up an old habit, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator just to feel our heart pump a little more.

A pause by the road to enjoy this incredible vista of sea and surfers.

A pause by the road to enjoy this incredible vista of sea and surf at Diamond Head.

Or how about structuring our day so we can have a little extra time to walk part of the way to our destination, or take a different route in our car? The other day, I avoided the freeway and thoroughly enjoyed a drive through Waikiki and around Diamond Head, where I stopped for a while to watch the surfers. It felt so wonderful!

A treasured tree in Kapiolani Park, one of my favorite walks.

A treasured tree in Kapiolani Park, one of my favorite walks.

Going holo holo can mean allowing time for moments of reflection, a pause by a favorite tree in a park or a visit to a favorite beach, just to sit and ponder.

Of course a museum is always a great place to go holo holo. I love visiting the Honolulu Museum of Arts and just sitting in one of the lovely, serene courtyards.

One of Deborah Nehmad's new works, "Wasted," a powerful and poignant trilogy on all the lives wasted by guns in America.

One of Deborah Nehmad’s new works, “Wasted,” a powerful and poignant trilogy on all the lives wasted by guns in America.

But of course the art can always take the mind to a different time and place as well. Don’t miss the current Hawaii Designers exhibition. I spent half an hour alone in the little enclave that houses Deborah Nehmad’s breathtaking - and thought-provoking - work.

Jerry goes holo holo to find a picturesque place to sketch and paint en plein air. Here he is at Malekahana Beach Park.

Jerry goes holo holo to find a picturesque place to sketch and paint. Here he is at Malaekahana Beach Park.

Some folks just cannot go holo holo without a purpose beyond simply gazing and reflecting. My husband Jerry is one of those people. He makes forays around the island to find places to sketch and paint en plein air. Just being outdoors and appreciating nature soothes his soul.

The sunset near Kaimana Beach.

The sunset near Kaimana Beach.

The one thing Jerry misses in our home deep in Nuuanu Valley is sunsets. So sometimes we just drive down to Waikiki or Diamond Head or Waterfront Park and sit and watch the sun as it dips down to end the day.

A hula halau performs at Center Stage.

A hula halau performs at Center Stage.

Shopping is no longer my thing (after many, many years of shopping as part of my job as a fashion writer) so I almost never go shopping without a specific goal in mind. But one day I had to run an errand at Ala Moana Center and what fun, and how refreshing, it was to take a few minutes and sit down to enjoy the hula at Center Stage. The malls frequently offer experiences beyond shopping. Have you been to any of the great concerts at Kahala Mall?

None of these things take much time or money, but they can certainly contribute to our sense of well-being. Hey, millions of people spend thousands of dollars to do the things we can do any time, any day, if we’ll just take a bit of time to go holo holo in Honolulu.

- Paula Rath

May 29th, 2016 / posted by paularath
Width: 4-feet 9-inches

Length: 8-feet

Work table end

Width: 4-feet 9-inches

Jerry and I have decided to redecorate our downstairs. It has been our studio and workroom for decades and it is showing the wear.

We have two highly useful items we would like to give away to someone who can use them. The first is the cutting table I used in my fashion design studio and then moved into our home. It is on wheels. The dimensions are eight-feet long by four-feet nine-inches long (or 96-inches by 57-inches).  It has storage shelves underneath which I used for bolts of fabric and pattern-making paper, then later for canvases, framing materials, collage papers, etc. The top has a layer of cutting board material that enables you to cut on it. I used an Exacto knife and rotary cutter on it all the time.

Jerry built it and this table is made to last for generations. It will have to be taken apart into two sections to get it out of the house. It was built in two sections so it should be simple. We have dismantled it several times before. You will need a truck to take it home.

Dimensions: 27-inches by 17-inches

Dimensions: 27-inches by 17-inches

There are three handy storage sections.

There are three handy storage sections.

The other piece is a leather Chinese coffee table with three sections for storage. I kept table linens in it. It has a glass top so you can put drinks or whatevers on it.

If you are seriously interested in either or both of these pieces. please email me. First come, first served. Honestly, it’s hard to part with them, but the time has come for some big changes downstairs!

- Paula Rath

May 24th, 2016 / posted by paularath
Kaveh Darkness 1

Model: Aileen Garcia of Niche Models                     All Photos by Kaveh Kardan

I am always happy when fashion photographer Kaveh Kardan shares his exquisite, dramatic images with me. He has such a great eye and his use of texture is so tactile. I want to reach right into the scene and take a piece of it.
Kaveh and stylist Therese Wahl recently took two models to a waterfall and let their spirits soar.
Kaveh Darkness 2

Model Camila Storchi of Wilhelmina Hawaii

This shoot reminds me of an exciting experience I had when I was fourteen. My family was house sitting for the Atherton family at Luakaha, their beautiful estate in Nuuanu Valley. There is a waterfall on the property and somehow Vogue Magazine discovered it.
The Vogue photographer asked me to put on a bikini and pose on various rocks and in the water so they could determine how and where they wanted the model to  pose, and how the light would change. I had no idea so much was involved with a photo shoot – it was my first exposure to the complex world of fashion photography.
It was a very glamorous job, indeed, although it got quite chilly after a few hours!
Kaveh Darkness 3

Photography: Kaveh Kardan, IG: KardanPhotography, FB: KardanPhotography, www.kardanphotography.com

Styling: Therese Wahl, IG: theresewahlstyling, www.mainartists.com/therese-wahl

Hair and Makeup: Malia Melanie, IG: mariahmelanie, FB: mariahmelanie

Model: Camila Storchi of Wilhelmina Hawaii, IG: camilastorchi

Model: Aileen Garcia of Niche Models and Talent, IG: rastaina_hawaii

Photo Assistant: Caitlin Moore

Kaveh Darkness 4
Kaveh Darkness 6
Kaveh Darkness 7
Kaveh Darkness 8
Kaveh Darkness 9
- Paula Rath
May 11th, 2016 / posted by paularath
Courtesy of Shera Mercer

A bracelet and pendant from the Alohi Kai Sunray Zoanthid Collection          Photos courtesy Shera Mercer

Jewelry designer Shera Mercer, whose line is called Alohi Kai, is passionate about diving. She and her husband Joe hit the ocean every chance they get, in search of new adventures and inspirations.

During a recent North Shore dive in Haleiwa Trench, she discovered a sea anemone that has inspired an entire collection. Called a Sunray Zoanthid, it was something she had never seen in any of her previous dives in oceans all across the globe. (Shera and Joe met while diving in the Maldives.)

Zoanthid flower in ocean

Sunray Zoanthids in their natural habitat.

Although the conditions were not ideal for diving the Haleiwa Trench that day, Shera said, “I often see unusual things there that we don’t see at any of the dive sites, so it’s always fun to go and poke around. As we combed our way in the green water with low visibility, I came across these amazing-looking anemones. It turns out, Sunray Zoanthids are not very common at all on Oahu. In fact, these were the only ones I’ve been able to find. There are other kinds of Zoanthids, but these are particularly lovely as they sit alone on a stem, as opposed to other types that form a mat on the reef.”

Alohi Kai one deck

The necklace can go gracefully from day to evening, with jeans or a cocktail dress.

In spite of the “murky and green and un-ideal for diving” waters, as Shera described them, she was struck by the anemones’ beauty and intrigue. The images stuck with her and a year later she began work on her new collection. Her first design was a double layered necklace. “Wearing it is so great! It makes a pleasing noise like coins as you move,” she explained.


The "double decker" necklace, which makes a lovely sound as you move.

The “double decker” necklace, which makes a lovely sound as you move.

The "double decker" necklace is blessed with a little gemstone.

The “double decker” necklace is blessed with a little gemstone.

The collection includes several styles of rings.

The collection includes several styles of rings.

Sunray Zoanthid earrings and necklace.

Sunray Zoanthid earrings and necklace.

Alohi Kai pendant

The collection is currently sold online only (priced at $89 to $649), but you can find other Alohi Kai pieces from previous collections at Riches Kahala, such as the piper fish, marine heart, honu, cowrie, sea snail and mushroom coral.

Here’s an added photo bonus: Shera just finished making these two necklaces she describes simply as “wire wrapped.”Whoa! They’re quite different from the typical style and format of a wire wrapped piece.

alohi kai wire wrapped 1

alohi kai wire wrapped 2

- Paula Rath