Hula + Lei : Merrie Monarch 2018
I had the honor of collaborating with Kumu Hula Mapuana de Silva and Halau Mohala 'Ilima again this year on their dresses for the 'Auana portion of the competition. This year's hula, Mahai'ula - an upbeat rendition of the Beamer classic by Kumu Hula Robert Cazimero. When Kumu exclaimed, "oh, it's so classic 90's HMI!", we all knew we had the right dress for this year's presentation.
Some interesting things happen when designing dresses specifically for hula. The design is never complete until it is adorned with lei. And a dress doesn't shine until it dances. The words, the motions, the flow, the dress, the lei, the hair, the music, the face - they all work together to retell the story and honor this place.