Friday | December 15, 2017
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Anne Namba fashion show at Hawaii Japanese Center

The Hawaii Japanese Center will host the annual Anne Namba Fashion Show and Sale from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 9. The fun event is free to the public. The center is located at 751 Kanoelehua Ave. in Hilo.

The popular live fashion show will start at 10 a.m. and will feature a line of local models showing off the designer’s Asian-inspired fall and holiday collections, including Night Dragons and Kimono Couture, including many items from her annual Honolulu sale for both and women.

Commentary on each of the garments will be provided by Namba, whose collections and special costuming skills are known around the world. This year’s Hilo models are Haidee Abe, Kanoe Arai, Beverly Crudele, Tyson Goo, Kristi Fox, Stephanie Moskwa, Tammy Molina, Dwayne Mukai, Troy Nakamura, Whitney Onishi, Anne Roth, Lisa Tokuyoshi and Michael Tsutsumi.

“Please, come and join the fun,” said HJC spokeswoman Gina Hara Chun. “A portion of each sale will benefit the Hawaii Japanese Center, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization. Numerous items will be on sale for 50 percent off.”

The mission of the Hawaii Japanese Center is “Preserving the Past to Build the Future.” The center seeks to serve the community as a bridge for diverse generations to understand the triumphs and struggles of Japanese immigrants to the island of Hawaii through its educational and cultural activities and access to its collections of resources.

Designer Namba was born in Hawaii and graduated cum laude from the prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. For five years, she honed her design and technical skills working in New York’s garment industry. Her last year in New York was spent working in the costume department at Radio City Music Hall.

In 1985, she returned home to the islands, at first working for one of the state’s largest garment manufacturers, then going solo and working out of her parents’ home, designing her own line of one-of-a-kind garments made from vintage Japanese kimonos and obis. Finally, in 1989, she opened her Honolulu boutique in Manoa Valley and Anne Namba Designs was born.

In the years since, Namba has taken her Kimono Couture to new heights, including adding to her kimono and obi designs by creating exclusive silk print collections using Asian themes. Her collections have appeared in Bergdorf-Goodman in New York, Neiman Marcus, Macy’s West, the Saks Fifth Avenue Folio Catalog, Nordstrom, Liberty House and I. Magnin stores. She has shown her designs in Beijing, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore and many mainland U.S. cities.

In 2009, she created 120 costumes for the Savonlinna, Finland Opera Festival’s 2009 production of “Madama Butterfly,” as well as costumes for the 2010 “Madama Butterfly” production in Malmo, Sweden.

Namba is a 2007 recipient of the Roselani Medallion of Excellence from The National Society of Arts and Letters. Anne Namba Designs was selected by Ernst & Young as Hawaii’s 2000 Retail Entrepreneur of the Year.

For additional information on the Hilo event, contact the HJC at


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