Whether you live here or are just visiting, there is a quintessential gift often given to dads on Father’s Day in Hawaii….the Aloha Shirt. Most people, even those who have never been to Hawaii, are familiar with what an Aloha shirt is. They are sold worldwide, not just in Hawaii, yet they are uniquely Hawaiian in origin. Their popularity, for the most part, started after World War II. Many military personnel, as well as tourists, wore the shirts, and even President Harry Trumann was photographed sporting an Aloha shirt. Of course movie celebrities like Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Elvis, and TV shows such as Hawaii 5-0 (the original series) and Magnum P.I., greatly influenced the shirts’ popularity also.
Aloha shirts were still considered casual wear however, until around the 1950’s when businesses in Hawaii began to “loosen up” the stuffy business dress codes and instituted Aloha Fridays. Nowadays, Aloha shirts are acceptable wear for most businesses and restaurants in Hawaii. Even some places in the mainland U.S. have “casual Fridays” now.
Aloha shirts were originally mostly prints done on darl blue or black silk, but today you can find an unending array of designs, colors, and fabrics to choose from. Of course, some styles continue to remain high on the popularity chart, such as the Magnum P.I., “vintage” prints (the originals can fetch a high price!), and top quality designer name brands. There is sure to be a shirt just right for the dad in mind, so if you were wondering what to get as a gift on Father’s Day…give dad a little Aloha, with the unique gift of an Aloha Shirt!