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‘Hawaiian gold’

  • JAMES GARRETT / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-ADVERTISER
    Kuana Torres Kahele performed at the 36th Annual Na Hoku Hanohano Awards in May. Kahele wore three layers of 10-strand, Niihau shell lei of rare colors worth $100,000.
  • STAR-ADVERTISER FILE
  • COURTESY MARC TURNER
    Mama Ane Kanahele, pictured here with musician Kuana Torres Kahele, is one of the eldest living lei masters from Niihau. Kahele considers the Kanaheles his second family, and while on tour he brings their lei to sell, returning all of the proceeds to them.
  • COURTESY MARC TURNER
    This beautiful Niihau shell lei, made by lei master Mama Ane Kanahele, is featured on the October page of a new calendar being sold as a fundraiser for three hula halau.
  • COURTESY MARC TURNER
    The lei offers a glimpse of the diversity of Niihau shells.

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