Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Brown is not the official color of poverty

Today I was doing a little investigative reading on colors and ran across a Wikipedia entry that I just don't agree with.

"Brown is the color of dark wood or rich soil. It is a composite color made by combining red, black and yellow. The color is seen widely in nature, in wood, soil, and human hair color, eye color and skin pigmentation. In Europe and the United States, it is the color most often associated with plainness, humility, the rustic, and poverty. It is also, according to public opinion surveys in Europe and the United States, the least favorite color of the public."

They make the claim that brown is a color associated with poverty and that it is one of the least favorite colors in the USA and Europe. I have to disagree with that statement and question how they arrived at such a conclusion.

My first case in point would be stating that a tapa Hawaiian shirt is normally brown in color and brown Tapa cloth is highly prized color amongst collectors.

Explorer Captain Cook sure liked the color brown, in fact he was the first European to collect Tapa cloth and introduce it to the rest of the world. In Tonga, tapa is known as ngatu, and in Tonga it is of great social importance to the islanders, often being given as gifts. Hey, have some poverty brah (said no Tongan ever)

So off to the internet to do some more checking. I checked some home decorating sites as well as performed some simple searches for best colors, favorite colors, etc. and came up with this consensus: "The most popular color in the world is blue. The second favorite colors are red and green, followed by orange, brown and purple." So far, the fine people of the Internet sure don't indicate that the color brown is a disliked color. But you cant believe everything you read on the internet can you?

But wait, pictures don't lie, let's do some additional image searches for "poor people" and "poverty". While I saw a lot of poor people wearing clothing colors such as white, blue, and black, there was very little in the way of brown clothing.

And then I was thinking that chocolate is brown, does that have an association with poverty? Umm nope. What about coffee, its brown in color, is that a sign of poverty?

Even many famous, prestigious universities are built from brown bricks. Not grey or red bricks, but brown, that alone should tell you something about the color brown.

In the end I think the majority consensus on the Internet got it right this time, and Wikipedia is plain wrong. Whether it's colored artificially or naturally, brown is always considered a neutral, yet undeniably popular color. I will always view it as a color associated with nature and our beautiful planet earth and will never look at it as a color symbolic of poverty.

By now your saying to yourself "you didn't mention brown skin color" and your right, I didn't go there because this blog is primarily about product marketing, textiles and clothing trends, not racial issues.

Friday, August 8, 2014

List of Top Hawaiian Shirt Designs for 2014

With a plethora of Hawaiian prints (in sometimes up to 6 colorways) being churned out by this manufacture and that one, choosing a good design for your personal Hawaiian shirt can be a monumental task. Our approach to choosing what to print (or what not to print) is relative simple. When it comes to men's Hawaiian shirts we primarily think about how to match Hawaiian clothing as well as incorporating select customer demographics into our decision.

If we had to pick the top colors for men's Hawaiian shirts based solely on sales numbers we would have to say that blues, purples, greens, browns, and lastly honorable mention for whites, are amongst the top picks for 2014 Wave Shoppe’s most popular shirts in those colors are as follows:

Pictured on your left is a blue Hawaiian shirt with pineapples. A good choice for guys that like a bit of a toned down look that's not quite a reverse print.

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Next we have a beautiful purple Hawaiian shirt in a men's cut. This is a big customer favorite, especially with the men that wear khaki shorts, as well as wedding parties.

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Green is another  popular color that pairs up well with khaki or sage pants as well as looking good on men with brown or darker colored hair.

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Last, but not least, we have brown. Brown Hawaiian shirts are always sophisticated looking but when you incorporate a tribal design in to the shirt you end up with a more than stellar looking garment.

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Please note that replicating tapa shirts on cotton is the norm nowadays and the brown tapa Hawaiian shirt above is an extremely detailed and fine looking design on cotton.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Top 5 Father's Day Gifts (by a Dad)

There are no hard rules for any types of gift giving, and that also applies to Fathers Day gifts. Nonetheless fathers can be difficult to buy for, mainly because they are not usually very open about their feelings, desires, wants etc.

But being a dad myself as well as having a fairly well rounded appetite for variety, I thought I would offer some affordable, yet realistic suggestions for Father's Day gifts (solid choices that wont backfire on you).

Even if you have only observed dad for a few minutes a day, you can still come reasonably close to figuring out what he may like.

So below is my recommendations for affordable Father's Day gifts (in no particular order), as well as a few recommendations on where you could purchase it from.

  • If you have noticed that dads clothes look a bit greasy or that he smells like gasoline or diesel fuel he would probably appreciate some tools. If you have a good budget I would recommend a pre-boxed tool set like this 165-Pc for $89 sold by Sears or if you have a smaller budget check out the sets offer at auto parts stores like this 54-Pc for $39 sold by O'Reilly Auto Parts

  • Dad is usually missing in the morning and on the weekends and when you do see him, he is carrying a rod and box and smells like fish or beer or both. Odds are dad likes to fish and let me tell you right now, dads fishing equipment and tackle are sub par at best. big ticket items like new rods and reels can be tricky to purchase so I would take the safe route. 
  • My recommendation here would be for you to either buy him a nice gift certificate from your local fishing supply store or go online and get him a Bass Pro Shops Gift Certificate (my personal favorite). But if your dad is not tech savvy enough to use gift cards and you need to actually buy a fishing gift for him, I would recommend sticking with basic baits such as a handful of crankbaits from Bass Pro any of those colors listed will work on a wide variety of waters.
  • Dads constantly spotted in the crawlspace or under the sink or spend a lot of time in the attic? My guess here is that a new flash light will cause dear old dad to do backflips. My recommendation is twofold. First choice is a Maglight combo set sold by Home Depot for $50 and my second yet equal pick will be a spotlight such as this Stanley 10 watt sold by Walmart for $45. Don't be cheep on the light, the higher candle power and wattage the better. Many lights are re-chargeable and come with a car adapter, as well as a charger.

  • Clothing! Ha we all know that when faced with going clothes shopping that dad would rather wear his clothes until they literally turn to rags. You can approach this a few ways, but I always go for whacky t-shirts with sayings/designs or colorful Hawaiian shirts from a well known company such as Wave Shoppe or one of the many others found online. I would stick with online shopping because that's where you are going to find the largest variety of men's Hawaiian shirts.

  • Your dad more or less mopes around the house and spends most of his time watching television? Slippers to the rescue, yep house slippers are the ticket. Get the kind that have some sort of plush lining and can be easily slipped on and off like these Deer Stags from Zappos and how can you beat that price of $27 I mean in addition to the comfy slippers you will most likely be able to spring for a Fathers Day Card as well.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Aloha from Italy?

Every once in a while I run across something that myself or science for all that matters can not explain.

I ran across this image in a Google shopping ad and I just had to get more information on whom on earth would wear a Hawaiian shirt with a red bandana and skinny jeans.

To my dismay there is a online company selling Saint Laurent labeled silk Hawaiian shirts that are made in Italy of all places, and get this, they are only charging $890 for the shirt. OMG really?

I guess what I really want to say is that if there are that many punk ass bitch looking kids, that have so much money, to buy a ridiculous priced Hawaiian shirt made in Italy, then the world has gone to hell in a hand basket.

Sorry but that's just way to much money to spend on any type of clothing, not alone a Hawaiian shirt.

Even basic street gear from Aloha shirt shop sells for under $140 though people whom want more value and bang for their dollar tend to shop at places like Wave Shoppe Hawaiian shirts whereas the prices range between $38 and $48 for American made Hawaiian shirts (made in California and Hawaii).

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Unprepossessing Shirts

While some people may say that ugly Hawaiian shirts are not particularly attractive or appealing to the eye, it doesn't necessarily mean the person wearing it isn’t attractive on the inside. Actual customer pictures sent to Wave Shoppe Hawaiian shirts suggest that despite their unprepossessing appearances, the customers could still be suave and possibly even a little animal magnetism going on. 

For those that are unfamiliar with this recent fashion trend, you need to know that it didn’t originate in Hawaii, they originated on the mainland, in a very messy textile cutting room.

These ugly Hawaiian shirts are the byproduct of years of shirt manufacturing, as well as making good on a few snide comments pertaining to what we were going to do with our remnant fabrics. Our response was usually that we were going to cut all of it up and make it into Hawaiian shirts and actually sell them.

People said we were crazy, nothing would match and that they would be hideous looking, we said exactly. Its not the first time people have questioned Charles rational.

Let it be told that in this type of manufacturing / business model that there really isn’t such a thing as scrap fabric, we use almost everything and only when the pieces become trace fragments of cloth, do we ever toss any of it. 

So 5 or 6 years later we were brainstorming on new products that could be brought to market. Even micro clothing labels such as Wave Shoppe Hawaiian Shirts need to be mindful of breaking into new retail vertical spaces.
Thus the cutting shop was eventually given the directive to start blindly cutting up reserve fabrics (that were not being utilized for the current line). While we initially produced just a few shirts in our more popular sizes, they sold out within a few weeks. A more expansive production of ugly Hawaiian shirts that followed did the same.  

Realizing we may have hit on something, we made the decision to jump in with both feet and run off large amounts of ugly shirts in all of the sizes (Small through 5X). The problem we faced now is that we wiped out much of our excess fabric during the first two productions.
Obviously we had to have the shirts, so we went out and purchased a few thousand yards of fabrics from some of our suppliers. Mind you none of which will be used in our traditional shirt line.
Currently our inventory of these garish shirts is 50% over normal inventory levels, but we anticipate that demand for these shirts will soon outpace supply. If you’re looking to win a ugly Hawaiian shirt contest at the office or a luau, these are the ugly Hawaiian shirts to have.
These are not necessarily gag gifts either. Of the few hundred or so ugly shirts we have sold so far, its our estimate that over 80 % of the recipients are actually wearing them or have worn them at least once!
I will admit that as I see more and more of the ugly shirts released from sewing, that they are growing on me. Let it be known that I don't have one for myself yet, I guess I am a bit of a wimp or possibly have a weak Aloha spirit. But these are all one of a kind collectables, so I will eventually succumb to putting one in my Hawaiian shirt collection.
All of our customers that have provided us with feedback have reported that they are the talk of the water cooler and consistently win their office contests, as well as often finding themselves engaged in deep conversation about their odd looking shirts.
"Often times, my office mates (when I wear my ugly Hawaiian shirt to the office) often point out the fabric from the other shirts I have.  I enjoy watching people look at the shirt, and try to figure out where they’ve seen some of the other patterns."
""Not even the bleeding eyeballs detracts from the pleasure of this magnificent shirt!".
That's all for now folks, grab yourself one of these shirts and have a little fun this Summer. Mahalo and have a great day! Charles

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring is here and it heralds a busy season at the Wave Shoppe

Spring is here and it heralds a busy season at the Wave Shoppe.

I just love the first day of spring! Soon I will be planting a little garden outside our office and every year as I am planning it the conversation with the Hawaiian shirt King goes like this. “I cannot wait to plant my garden this year” says Peggy owner of the best Hawaiian apparel store in San Diego. Charles pipes in with “well don’t forget you need to water and weed the garden because I am too busy to do it”.

So I plant the garden and after the first week lose interest in it and of course Charles starts to water and then weed. Then he also brings in the vegetables, takes them home, cleans them and cooks them up.  Not sure why he bothers to tell me he won’t water and weed because we both know it is a task that will fall on him.

He is right about one thing we really are very, very busy because spring heralds the start of our busy season. Right now companies are looking for event shirts for the summer and we do supply a huge selection of event shirts that are used for company picnics, conventions, and company shirts. The fact that we make our shirts in the U.S.A. means we get a lot of orders from small business and unions and those companies that feel it is important to buy U.S.A. made products.

So while Charles will be busy in the garden, he is also available to help our wonderful potential customers who are looking for wholesale shirts for their event. You can reach him at 760-294-1765.
Boy Scouts of America troop visiting Hawaii wearing Hawaiian shirts purchased in bulk from Wave Shoppe


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

To Tuck or Not To Tuck – that is the question

Sometimes my customers ask me the craziest questions and todays’ customer wins the award. This gentleman comes into the store and bellows dramatically from the door “To Tuck or Not To Tuck! That is my question!

I have to say I was amused by his question as well as his dramatic flair but he really wanted to know so I kept my response to my standard answer of “there is not steadfast rule”.
I have been asked this question before and the answer is that we work really hard to make comfortable, colorful Hawaiian shirts here at the Wave Shoppe and we encourage our customers to wear their shirts a little loose and hanging down instead of tucking them in. 
After all a loose fitting shirt allows for air to flow through and keeps you cool and comfortable I did say at the end of our conversation the only thing we discourage you to do is wear one of our shirts and pair them with black crew socks and any type of sandals because that is just wrong on so many levels!!!!

So if you are reading this blog post and you wear sandals and black socks, instead of getting all dignified and letting me know why it ok in your opinion. I say to you “ Bruddah just get some Slippahs! 
Here is another article on how to wear a Hawaiian shirt (with more pictures of course).

Saturday, March 8, 2014


Parrots! I seem to be surrounded by them at work and at home. At the Wave Shoppe Hawaiian Shirt store in Escondido we sell Hawaiian shirts, muumuus, tropical dresses, tropical signs and we have some really cool, colorful parrot wind chimes among other things. The parrot wind chime sound is a tinkling of wood and really quite soothing and that is about the only soothing parrot I have ever heard.  

For some unknown reason I allowed my husband to talk me into getting an Umbrella Cockatoo. Anyone who knows me knows that I have always had a fear of birds. This stemmed from being attacked as a child by a giant macaw when I was 5 years old. I simply walked by this birds’ cage while playing with my friend and this bird jumped me and while he didn’t do any physical damage I was pretty scared and simply preferred to stay away from birds. Don’t get me wrong when I saw birds I did not freak out and run or anything embarrassing like that I just preferred to stay away from them especially parrots.
One day my husband told me he had found a reputable breeder who had a baby cockatoo and could we just go look at it? He said a baby cockatoo would be small and getting it small would enable me to grow comfortable with it by the time it was full grown so we headed out to just “look”. I didn’t find out until later that Charles had been to the bank the day before and funnily enough he had just the right amount of cash to buy that parrot in his wallet. By the way we adopted the bird and named him Coco and he was not small.

Baby Cockatoos are really big about the size of 6 canaries all together and they are expensive!!!!! Lifetime commitment as they live longer than humans do. They are messy, destructive, annoying attention grabbers but when they are loving and sweet they make up for all the negatives. My parrot sits on my shoulder and runs his claw through my hair giving me what my husband terms “googly eyes” he says he will have a problem with the bird when it begins to sing me Barry White songs!

So for all you parrot lovers out there. We invite you to hop in your car and take a drive to Downtown Escondido to come check out our wooden parrot chimes!

The chimes are only available in-store but they are really colorful and look good in patio areas, bars and poolside.

On the left is an actual picture of one of the parrot chimes we offer in the showroom.

And of course we have lots of Hawaiian shirts with parrots in an array of colors. One of our most popular parrot shirts are these orange Hawaiian shirts with parrots and we sell this particular shirt year round.