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Throwing a Luau!!!

ALOHA!!!!  What better way to escape Vancouver’s cold + rain than to bask in the warmth of a luau!!!






Jeff + I wanted to have friends + family over to our little tiki hut for a housewarming!  We chose the luau theme since we loooves Hawaii + were married + honeymooned there.  It’s kinda our thang.  Here we are before the wedding last year at a luau in Kauai.KauaiLuau2011

Awwwww.  I really miss it there.  My dad is on the Big Island right now as I type.  Lucky dad.

I went party planning loco.  My living room look like a party store stock room disaster the days prior.HousewarmingLuau - 01  Fired!!!!

I found me some lurvely tropical flowers at Granville Island + they cheered me right up!HousewarmingLuau - 02

HousewarmingLuau - 03


































I made a Chinese paper parasol wreath to welcome our guests!   I found this link on Pinterest!!!  Ooooh, Pinterest – you temptress.

First, I had a 3/4″ circumference pipe cover that I cut to the desired size + wrapped some duct tape around the seam.HousewarmingLuau - 04

Then you just stab those suckers into the foam + overlap!HousewarmingLuau - 05


















Voila!!!  Ta-daaaaa!!!!

HousewarmingLuau - 06


















Banana leaves are essential.  I found these frozen at one of the MANY Asian markets here in Vancouver.  Just don’t forget to thaw them out a day before the party. $1.50 per package, y’all.  There’s alotta leaves in one package, so don’t go crazy like I did + buy five packages.  Two packages will suffice.HousewarmingLuau - 07


















I measured the length of the candles or mason jars I was using to hold utensils.  Cut the banana leaf (which is SUPER easy to work with) slapped on some double stick tape + tied it off with some raffia to hold it all together.HousewarmingLuau - 08

















Do I have a picture of the final product???  NO!!!!  That’s cuz I TOTALLY dropped the ball + kept forgetting to take pictures!!!  I majorly suck.  That’s because I was spazzing out at getting it all done.

Here are some thank you gift bags I made for our guests.HousewarmingLuau - 18

I especially loved handing them out at the end of the night to the single men.  They looked really manly holding them.  Muy macho!!!!

My dear man Jeff, hanging up the Chinese lanterns.  If you look REEEEEALLY close, you can see my banana leaf creations on the table.  See ’em?!HousewarmingLuau - 09

We found nice teak + acacia wood bowls from thrift stores.  They needed a little lovin’ – so after I washed them I rubbed them all up with Ikea Skydd wood treatment oil.  Also, Jeff’s thrift store collection of tiki mugs that were FINALLY getting some good use.Ikea Skydd Wood Treatment Oil  I’m tellin’ ya, if you keep your eyes peeled at thrift stores, you won’t have to buy all your party supplies from the tacky party stores.












We also strung up some old Hawaiian record album covers that we had lying around.  Cuz that’s how we roll.HousewarmingLuau - 10

I covered the tables with dollar store shower curtains + laid burlap bags or banana leaves on top.  Oh yes + I used A LOT of double stick foam tape to stick the hula skirts to pretty much anywhere I could put one.

Okay, here’s evidence that we actually had a party!!! HousewarmingLuau - 14

Dropped the ball again on the picture taking!  Too busy having fun!!!  Thank god our buds had their iPhones + took pictures for us!messagepart-1

Here we are with pals Dawn + Mike.  We provided the leis + I made hibiscus hair clips for the ladies.  Glue guns be the weapon of choice.HousewarmingLuau - 16

It was funny because it was really cold + windy that night so all the ladies showed up in full length black coats.  Like flashers.  But underneath their brightly colored tropical wear was ready to go!!!!  Oh, Canada.

Our entertainment for the evening – lil’ Nate on the uke!!!  So cute!!!!!HousewarmingLuau - 15

Awesome, blurry, grainy picture taking.  Nice one, Shelli.  Sigh.  I need some DSLR photography lessons.

Classic Hawaiian music was playing in the earlier part of the night. For example, the great Gabby Pahinui.Screen Shot 2012-12-05 at 8.07.40 PM











Towards the later part of the evening we rocked it out with some ska + surf punk bands.SupertonesSurf
















What a totally tubular time!!!  The best compliment of the night came from our guest David, who had spent a year in Maui in 1976 when he was 19.  He said our party reminded him of the warmth, beautiful people + great vibe that he experienced that year in Hawaii.  Shaka brah!!!!!JeffDevineSurfPhotography

Photo by Jeff Divine.

Totally so far out, man….

We had so much fun, we want to make it an annual event!  Maybe next year will be ’80s surf luau!!!Spicoli



Oh, Spicoli…….MAHALO EVERYONE!!!!!

17 Comments Post a comment
  1. rocky nishino #

    I loved the Higasa(parasol) wreath. It is good idea and cute to look at. Good job Shelli and Jeff.
    mommy hiroko,

    December 5, 2012
    • Thanks! It is still on the door!!! Since it’s raining in Vancouver, it’s a bright + cheery reminder!!! Love you!

      December 6, 2012
  2. Deb Fayle #

    Mahalo Shelli and Jeff! That was so much fun and you are both truly fabulous hosts!! Thank you for everything – our senses were truly awakened with the Hawaiian warmth your Tiki house exuded … especially on a rainy Vancouver evening. Awesome party!

    December 6, 2012
    • At one point, it was getting hot in there!!! Thanks for all 4 of you being there!!! And not to mention the cookies!!! Yum!!!! Miss Hawaii!!!!

      December 6, 2012
  3. Zhu #

    Wow, that’s an elaborate party! I don’t know much about Hawaiian traditions but it looks like you nailed it.

    But between us… he can’t be that cold in Vancouver, ca it? On the East Coast we always think you have it easy!

    December 6, 2012
    • Thanks!!! I had tons of fun putting it all together!!! No, it’s true – not as cold as the East Coast!!! But maybe the wind + damp add to the chill factor!!! Since I’m a native Southern Californian, it’s all cold to me!!!

      December 6, 2012
  4. Daphne #

    Looks like a ton of fun. Glad to see Jeff could finally use his mug collection….think there are more to that collection at Mom’s.

    December 6, 2012
    • Oh God…..seriously???!!! NOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

      December 6, 2012
  5. kenny daddO/Papi nishino #

    ALOHA, Nan, WoW’ZEER’s, nice little spread U and
    Jeff put out 4 ur Luau,..good work, gurl, boy oh boy U
    guy’s did AWsuM, yup, agree the wreath is great!!!!!
    haha, more mug collection’s at Mom’s, well what the
    hey huh, more 4 ur eBay collection, huh huh !!!!! Ok,
    glad U had a great time, now look forward 2 a visit
    from Mum’sie and Ash, Take Care, sorry i can’t be
    there,…best 2, Jeffrey, Mahalo nui loa, Cheers, Dad’s

    December 12, 2012
    • You are too full of Aloha, dad!!! Vancouver in the springtime!!!! Da kine!!!

      December 14, 2012
  6. Love your decorating ideas – how cool!!! Looks like you had a fun party 🙂

    December 22, 2012
    • Thanks!!! It was a totally tubular time! I wish I took better pictures!!!

      December 23, 2012
      • Totally the sign of a great party that you DIDN’T have time to take more pics 🙂 Merry Christmas to you too! Hope you have a great day. x

        December 24, 2012
      • Aha! Good point!!! Here, here! Merry Christmas – wherever the two of you are!!!!!!!!!!!

        December 26, 2012
      • Hong Kong is our latest home 🙂 Loving it!

        December 26, 2012
      • Sweet!!! If you guys are ever in Vancouver – gimme a holla!!!!

        December 28, 2012

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