New Style for Kualapu`u
There’s a new shop three doors down from Molokai Furniture in Kualapu`u that offers men’s, women’s and children’s Hawaiian wear. Molokai Furniture owner Denise Taueetia opened Denise’s Island Fashion February 25 and has been adding new clothes and accessories as the business develops.
Ashley Keoho, who works at Denise’s Island Fashion, said they’ve ordered basic tops and shorts to sell alongside the classic Hawaiian attire. She said their earrings and cover-ups have been popular so far.
Surrounded by vibrant colored apparel and beach-inspired jewelry, Keoho talks story with customers and offers her eye for style to help with purchases. Taueetia called her young employee a blessing, adding that because of Keoho she is able to bring in clothes that appeal to younger shoppers.
“When people go up to see her, they let her know their needs,” Taueetia said from her post in Molokai Furniture. “We like to listen to what the people really need.”
She added that she’s looking to provide plus-sized clothes. Their biggest struggle since she and her family decided to open the store in October is getting shipments in. But this sets the pace for expanding the store as they do things little by little, slowly bringing in new items.
Keoho said business has been good so far, but it would be better if the tour bus came up to the area. A shopper quickly agreed with her, voicing his complaints on the issue. He also agreed when Keoho said Denise’s Island Fashion started with Taueetia having a dream.
“With Denise, it’s always a dream,” the shopper said. “And it happens because she works and works and works.”
Taueetia said her supportive family is key. Her children helped her get the new shop ready and allows her to see what she needs to offer.
“I couldn’t have done it without my supportive husband,” she said. “He is always there for me and knows this is my desire.”
Now Taueetia is looking for ways to fill the space left empty in her furniture store when she moved the clothing into her new shop, which she opened so she could offer more apparel than she could store in Molokai Furniture.
Running two businesses and raising a family is demanding work, but she didn’t take the credit for her successes.
“I give all praise and glory to God,” she said. “He has given me the strength and wisdom to keep going on.”
Denise’s Island Fashion is located in Kualapu`u Center and is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. They will also be open tonight at 6 p.m. while the Coffees Festival is at the Kualapu`u Center.