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Blog — Lauhala weaving

Tactile Memories and Bugs Prefer Tahitian Lauhala

Hawaiian style lauhala Lauhala weaving

Tactile Memories and Bugs Prefer Tahitian Lauhala

Tahitian lauhala is really nice to work with.  The lau is long and pliable.  Unfortunately, the way they process it, makes it susceptible and attractive to bugs.  In Hawai'i, we generally harvest lau that is naturally dried on the tree.  The dried out "dead leaves" are not as attractive to bugs, but they will eat it if there's nothing else for them to feed on. I do not know the exact type or name of the bugs - they look like little beetles but I've also seen termites eat lauhala too. It's heartbreaking to find insect damaged lauhala as I...

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Some Very Cool Lauhala Videos

Hawaiian style lauhala lauhala hat Lauhala weaving papale

Some Very Cool Lauhala Videos

These are just a tiny sample of what's out there in cyberspace.  I just happened upon and enjoyed them. Thought you might too. This one is of Michele Zane-Faridi of Hana Hou in Hilo with one of her haumana.  They show and talk about gathering lauhala.  Looking at the thorns and the bugs, it'll help one understand the time consuming preparation of lauhala. And how just any dried leaf will not do.  Cleaning and caring for the puhala is vital.  Visiting Michele and Shadi (her daughter) at Hana Hou has been inspirational during these COVID19 lock down times since the Ka...

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Papale Are Like Snowflakes

Hawaiian style lauhala lauhala hat Lauhala weaving papale papale lauhala Ulana lauhala

Papale Are Like Snowflakes

Not in the socio-political sense... Papale are literally like snowflakes.  No two are exactly alike.   One can try to make a copy of a certain papale, it is pretty much impossible to ulana two identical papale.  The materials are actual natural plant materials prepared and ulana by human hands.  Although skilled and experienced weavers can have consistent tension and technique, they are still human beings and not machines.  Each papale is as unique as an individual snowflake.  From far away, snowflakes look alike but magnified under a microscope each is incredibly unique. A while back my FIL sent us a...

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"Grade B" Lauhala Projects

lauhala Lauhala weaving Ulana lauhala

"Grade B" Lauhala Projects

Wet summers and winters are better than drought. It's actually how it used to be before the vog changed our weather patterns.  However, it's disheartening when I have to throw away 90% or more of the lauhala I gathered due to mildew.  I usually compost all the "less than perfect" lau.  This time I sorted and kept the decent looking ones that I would usually compost. They're still good for weaving but not nice enough to make sellable papale. In the picture below one can see 1) dirt marks that will wipe off and 2) mildew dots that won't. From...

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