Enter the vintage world of Tim and Betsy Hand, who own Kauai Vintage in Kapa‘a. This quaint shop located inside Orchid Alley is a mixture of love of fashion and love for Hawai‘i for the duo, and they show their appreciation for the islands with some good old-fashioned hospitality that also helps them to preserve the island’s beauty.
“Vintage apparel is sustainable,” says Betsy. “There won’t be a shortage of vintage anytime soon, but there will be a shortage of our natural resources. Fast fashion or cheap and trendy clothing that doesn’t last is one of the world’s largest polluters. Kauai Vintage attempts to offset this footprint by preserving and appreciating clothing from a time past.
“Of course, the romance and nostalgia that the clothing evokes is second to none. The best part is the feeling that the clothing brings us, the stories behind them, and its commitment to the environment.”
When asked to share one of those stories, Betsy replies, “We have a pristine box of beautiful go-go dancer costumes and cruise wear. The original owner would travel to Hawai‘i every year, and each year she bought a beautiful party dress. I’m proud to say every single one of her dresses has a new home and will appear at parties, not in landfills.”
When seeing these beautiful and quality clothing items from the past, we wonder if she has any favorites. “I refuse to sell my most dramatic pieces such as ones with high collars and pearl buttons. I have a fashion problem,” admits Betsy.
How and why Tim and Betsy do business with Kauai Vintage invites a peek into the multimillion dollar apparel industry. We may not give much thought to it, but it just may make us pause before clicking that button or flashing that credit card.
You’ll also find laser-made products courtesy of Tim—wood key chains, coasters, Christmas ornaments and more that make perfect Kaua‘i souvenirs!
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