Yokang brings Okinawa designs to Honolulu

October 20th, 2009


Nadine Kam photos
Brigitte Patton wears one of Kanna Yamauchi’s bridal designs.

Hui Makaala, an Okinawan scholarship organization whose goal is to promote the Okinawan culture and Uchinanchu spirit did just that during its annual fashion luncheon Oct. 18 at the Sheraton Waikiki.

It’s not often that they’re able to bring in a designer from Okinawa, but they hit the jackpot with the mother-and-daughter designers, respectively, Mitsuko Yamauchi and Kanna Yamauchi.

Mitsuko was the headlining designer here two years ago, and this year it was Kanna’s turn to show her designs for Yokang, a fashion collaboration that involves her husband, the artist and textile designer Hiroshi Tanaka.


Yokang designs were a hit at Hong Kong Fashion Week, and Kanna heads to Japan after Honolulu.

The fashion show was preceded by several performances by Dazzman Toguchi, Hooge Ryu Hana Nuuzi No Kai and Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko Hawaii.

Then Kanna put on a display of handpainted/airbrushed garments reflecting Okinawa’s colorful aesthetic that fits in nicely with our own island surroundings. Her show was presented during Hong Kong Fashion Week before her arrival here.


Dancer Dazzman Toguchi in one of Yokang’s unisex hoodies.

There was a break in the middle of the show, when Mitsuko showed some of her bridal designs, as well as men’s shirts that were available for sale outside the showroom before and after the event. The show concluded with Yokang bridal designs.

There was so much packed into the show that I had some trouble editing down to fit YouTube’s 10-minute restriction. Videos can give the impression that what you see is what you get, so, just know that there was much more than could be shown.

You can read more about Yokang in my story that ran in advance of the show: http://hsblinks.com/134

keith kaneshiro

Mens’ shirts formed a big part of a segment shown by Kanna’s mother Mitsuko Yamauchi, founder of Okinawa’s Fashion Room Madonna. This one is modeled by former city prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro. Equivalent to the aloha shirt, these shirts are also worn by businessmen in Okinawa.


A videographer at work.


Kanna posed backstage with Brigitte and Nicole Fox, right.


Mitsuko Yamauchi’s shirts and select separates by Yokang were among the boutique items offered for sale before and after the show.

men’s 2



Kanna and Mitsuko Yamauchi.

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One Response to “Yokang brings Okinawa designs to Honolulu”

  1. Karen Shishido:

    Thank you, Nadine, for these beautiful photos of Hui Makaala’s fashion show this past Sunday. Hui Makaala is so proud to be able to share Kanna Yamauchi’s designs with everyone–she is a fabulous designer! For everyone who did not attend–you missed a beautiful show.

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