Guest Blog: Local Designer Dolkii
Shaiyanne here 🙂 I am the owner of Dolkii, an online only shop known for super soft, vintage-inspired graphic tees! I started Dolkii in 2014 as a fashion blog and it has since evolved into the shop that it is today.
Dolkii known for our ‘Wahine’ designs, which is a collection of tees dedicated to supporting women & girls of Hawai‘i. We partner with Women’s Fund of Hawai‘i, an amazing non-profit organization whose mission is to support innovative, grassroots programs that empower women and girls statewide. Beyond gender, Women’s Fund of Hawai’i is deeply committed to helping deserving Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander women and girls succeed. Priority grants are given to programs that serve Native Hawaiian women and girls because, unfortunately, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander women & girls fare disproportionately worse than other women & girls in Hawai‘i. WFH & Dolkii believes that investing in Native Hawaiian organizations that empower women & girls, along with ALL women and girls who call Hawai’i home, is the way to make our island way of life better for everyone.
I’m excited to share with you all a few of my favorite food, beach and shopping spots on O’ahu! I grew up here and lived in Aiea, Waikele and (currently) Pālolo Valley. Of course I have my classic favorite food spots like Zippys (IYKYK!) or beaches like Lanikai, and I feel like I can keep this list going forever with all the amazing local spots around. Here are a few of my favorites to highlight:
Cafe Kaila: Hands down, my favorite breakfast spot! Cafe Kaila has a simple and hearty menu of classic eats. I personally love their Hawaiian breakfast which includes a giant plate of fresh fruits and a warm scone with a side of honey.
Koko Head Cafe: I promise that I eat more than just breakfast foods!!! But honestly, you HAVE to try Koko Head Cafe at least once! Not only do I love their drip coffee, but their entire menu just WINS. My favorite dish is their Chicky and Eggs Skillet, but if I’m craving something sweet, I opt for their French Toast which comes with a side of Frosted Flake Gelato made fresh by another fave of mine, Via Gelato (scroll more to read about them!)
Scratch Kitchen: I may or may not have a thing for breakfast foods lol. Whether it’s breakfast time or not, I LOVE coming to Scratch Kitchen for their Milk n Cereal Pancakes. It’s not always on the menu, so my second choice is always their chicken and waffles. Once you’re done eating, pop over to South Shore Marketplace to shop a number of our favorite local brands like Kealopiko and Salvage Public!
Leonard’s Bakery: If there is ONE sweets spot to try, even if you aren’t a huge dessert fan, its Leonards. This place is an iconic malasada shop located on Kapahulu Avenue (not too far from Waikiki) known for their delicious local-style donuts served in a pink box! Enjoy them fresh! We wouldn’t be surprised if you made multiple trips to this place ;)!
Waiola’s Shave Ice: For those of you looking for real shave ice, trust us when we say there are no good options in Waikiki or Ala Moana. Your best option is Waiola Shave Ice off Kapahulu Avenue. A favorite among locals, this is THE best spot for shave ice in town… and it’s not too far from the main Waikiki strip! Their shop on Mokihana Street is our fave and I recommend ordering a regular size Rainbow flavor with ice cream and condensed milk. YUM!
Via Gelato: I have a huge sweet tooth and the fact that Via Gelato is just 5 minutes from my house is very dangerous lol. Their Fierce Chocolate is incredible, along with all of their other season options! Located just walking distance from a few of our other favorite spots, I highly recommend hitting up Koko Head Cafe for breakfast, stopping at Ten Tomorrow for some light shopping, then hit up Via Gelato for an early afternoon ice cream treat!
Crack Seed Store: My childhood memories consist of going to the Crack Seed Store after school and ordering a small bag of spicy arare plus a small coke icee with ice cream at the bottom. I LOVE that Crack Seed Store is still around and forever will support our local neighborhood shop, located on the corner of Waialae and Kokohead Avenue. You can find so many other local favorite snacks here so def give it a visit and take your time exploring all the options!
BEACHES & HIKING
Sunset Beach, North Side There are so many beaches on the North Shore to love and enjoy, and Sunset Beach is one that I’ve been going to since I was a little kid with my family. It can get crowded, but I love the long stretch of shoreline so it always feels like we have space to relax.
Waimanalo Beach, East Side My beach days now a days are always with my nephew and nieces. Being with kids 5 and under, Waimanalo is one of our favorite spots since it’s calm shoreline is safe for the kids!
PLACES TO SHOP
Fighting Eel: Fighting Eel was the very first boutique to give our brand a shot and carry our tees in all 4 of their stores! I’ve loved this brand for as long as I can remember, and even remember lining up for their sample sales in downtown Chinatown before they had boutiques. FE is owned by two amazing women, Lan & Rona, who started the fashion line back in 2003. Today, they own 4 boutiques across O‘ahu and a sister line called Ava Sky. You can also find our Dolkii tees in all FE locations across O‘ahu!
Ten Tomorrow: A GEM in Kaimuki! I love popping into the Ten Tomorrow store off 11th Avenue for the comfiest clothes that always look chic. I love wearing their versatile pieces to the beach, out shopping, or out for a night out to dinner. Plus, you’re supporting an amazing local, woman-owned small business where they cut and sew all their items on the second floor of their boutique!
Jules + Gem Hawai‘i: Jules + Gem Hawai‘i has some of the most amazing fragrances to fill your home or office with! These candles and home sprays are hand-poured with so much love by Lana Gronwald in her studio on O‘ahu. I literally have almost every single one of her candle scents in my house lol! Of course, my favorite of them all is our collaboration scent PARADISE which is available as a candle and a room spray… also a beautiful gift from Hawai‘i hint hint ;). Her showroom is located in Magic Island, close to Pearl Harbor.
Jana Lam Hawai‘i Known for her colorful handbags, all handmade locally in her shop, Jana Lam has some of the cutest prints and colors around! I LOVE accessorizing her items with my outfits. Currently, I’m obsessed with her collaboration with Baggu and her collaboration with Coco Moon Hawai‘i, another wonderful local brand that specializes in baby products.
Ginger13 My signature accessories are my earrings, and if you take a closer look, they’re almost always mismatched. That’s on purpose! And they’re all handmade by one of my favorite jewelry designers: Ginger13. If you’re a jewelry lover, and love unique handmade pieces, you have to check out Cindy (the owner’s) shop in Downtown Chinatown! Take a peek at her website or insta for a glimpse into her beautiful boutique.
I hope you all enjoyed my list of favorites spots around O’ahu! Enjoy your island adventures and soak in every moment :).