August 6th, 2011 / posted by paularath

Andy's Team: Reise Kochi, Andy and Jill Mizawa

 Seems every month there is something new and interesting popping up at First Friday. Of course this month there was Andy South’s celebration of his family’s roots at the Pacific Gateway Center, a place were new immigrants can stand tall and get prepared for life in Hawaii.
Andy generously donated several garments from his “past lives” as a designer (HCC, pageants, post-Project Runway) for a silent auction to benefit the Center.
Although it’s difficult for him to part with some of these treasures, such as the little lace number he did for his HCC graduation show, Andy

I think this is the first dress of Andy's that sang to me "He's the one! He's going to be HUGE!" when he was still a student at HCC.

 said it’s time to clean his closet to make way for the line he is creating for Neiman Marcus which will be launched on September 8.
I loved Jill’s boots (see above). She said Andy insisted she buy them because they didn’t fit him. They are her current faves…and, hey, they color coordinated with Andy’s gorgeous shoes.
Here are a few photos of the gowns he showed at Pacific Gateway Center:

Oh how I love this dress! My favorite color and so simple and elegant!

Andy's pageant/prom days. Trust me, doing custom work requires a patient person!

Andy can do a wide variety of styles - and colors, with chic and simplicity.

First Friday is the perfect time to hold a Grand Opening and Nicole Franco took advantage of the opportunity – and the crowds – to open her first brick and mortar store, MiSH MaSH. It’s located at 1164 Smith Street, in the location formerly occupied by eTown, then B-Wareville.
Judging from the crowd inside, and the fact that everyone was walking out with packages, I would say Nicole has a hit on her hands. Her carefully edited selection of recycled and reconstructed pieces from the ’40s to the ’80s were appealing to everyone who walked in. Her whimsical visual merchandising and unusual electronics (courtesy of her boyfriend) were keeping the guys busy while their significant others played dress up in the dressing room.

Owner Nicole Franco seamlessly blends NYC and Honolulu in her adorable boutique, MiSH MaSH. Photos by Jerry Mayfield.

Jerry got the feel of the place. Every nook and cranny has a special “find,” from pots and plates to frocks and finery.

Clocks and kerosene 'em!

Belle bijoux!

Vinyl and games and '80s power prints - oh my!

While Nicole was welcoming customers to MiSH MaSH, Jason Tom, over at  the Chinatown Artists’ Lofts, 1109 Maunakea Street, held the grand opening party for ARTSmith. There were performances by Jason’s Human Beatbox Academy, Dancers Unlimited and Cherry Blossom Cabaret’s Academy of Tease.

Love the space at ARTSmith, whre break dancing took center stage last night.

After taking in some break dancing, we loved checking out the spaces some of the artists have established throughout the building.
Jerry, an expert bartender taught by none other than Dale DeGroff, came in handy when artist Ruth Sorensen, who was offering free martinis, discovered her bartender needed to take a break. Sorry I missed the shot as Jerry was shakin; it with Ruth. I was so intrigued with Ruth’s oil landscapes I simply forgot….
Have I given you enough reasons to make it to First Friday next month? And, hey, we arrived at six and found parking in the Chinatown Municipal lot, did all this fun stuff and left before 8 p.m. so we missed all the hullaballoo and craziness that can come later on at night.
– Paula Rath
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