Our Path to Nuʻuanu…

You could say our path to the Paiea Projects x Fitted Nuʻuanu Jersey began where our last jersey, Kepaniwai, left off. The original vision of our Hawaiian throwback jerseys was to chronicle the unification of the Hawaiian Islands by Kamehameha (birth name Paiʻea). Our 1st jersey, Puʻukoholā, gave respect to the heiau dedicated to the war god kū, which was prophesied to give Paiʻea the mana necessary to unify the islands. The 2nd (Hilo) jersey recognized the supernatural feat of Kamehameha lifting the Naha Stone, weighing nearly 5,000 lbs. Our 3rd jersey was inspired by one of the most-bitter battles recorded in Hawaiian History, the Battle at Kepaniwai, Maui. The fallout from that pivotal battle led Kamehameha to set his sights on conquering Oʻahu. Kahekili (believed to be Kamehameha’s father), ruler of Oʻahu, foresaw the eventual triumph of Kamehameha. Before he died, he said “Wait til the black kapa covers me and my kingdom shall be yours.” Seeing an opportunity, Kamehameha prepared his forces to seize Oʻahu, leading to the Battle of Nuʻuanu.

We followed the path of Kamehameha and his warriors beginning near Diamond Head, coming around Puowaina (Punchbowl), and heading up Nu’uanu Valley toward the Pali lookout.

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Mahalo nui to Ezekiel Lau, newest Quiksilver team rider, who took time off from his busy schedule surfing QS events around the world, and sported the Nuʻuanu jersey and New Era spacer mesh snapback at his home break.

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The number 4 on the Nuʻuanu jersey reminds us of the ancient Hawaiian method of counting by 4’s, an extremely practical method since a fisherman could hold 4 fish by their tails between the 5 fingers of each hand. It also recalls the multitude of warriors fighting for Kamehameha, said to have been over 16,000. In helu kahiko (traditional Hawaiian counting), this may have been referred to as 4 mano (4,000).

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On the 4th day, they moved their forces up to Puowaina (Punchbowl) to begin battle with Kalanikūpule, then ruler of Oʻahu. Our homey, Race Skelton, holds this crater in higher regard than most. To this day, the Contrast Magazine Publisher goes to the Punchbowl cemetery to pay respects to his father, a 2-time war veteran. Mahalo braddah Race!

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The design for the tank and tee incorporate the kahului (crescent) battle formation, while letting the #4 shine. The colored crescents count 4 and 40, while there are 400 crescents in total.

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The Battle of Nuʻuanu is also referred to as “Kalelekaʻanae,” the leaping mullet, in reference to the Oʻahu warriors who chose to leap to their death rather than live under the rule of Kamehameha.

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Mahalo nui to Moani Hara, former Miss Hawaii and resident of Nuʻuanu, for modeling the “Many Moons” tank and New Era 5-panel while tripping with us to the Pali lookout.

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Although Kauaʻi island would not surrender for years to come, the conclusion of this battle all but confirmed that Kamehameha had conquered all of Hawaii under one rule. He aupuni kō Kamehameha!

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