The classic rayon print Hawaiian shirts of the 1930s through 1950s stand alone as expressions of mid-century art on textiles. So many different patterns and themes were designed during this period that even to this day I still encounter shirts I've never seen before. Something in the design, the detail and the separation between the colors has always amazed me. There's just a quality to these old shirts which even the best of the replica shirts of today can't seem to capture.

I first became aware of this genre of garments about 15 years ago when I was a budding young vintage clothing enthusiast and dealer. I still remember marveling at the Thomas Steele book
The Hawaiian Shirt Its Art and History. Throughout the 90s I rode the crest of the Japanese market for vintage Levi's
  but the one thing I wouldn't sell was the old Hawaiian shirts. Whenever I came across a shirt that fit me (generally size extra large), I'd set it aside for myself.

Through the years I've grown tired of wearing some of the shirts, and they've wound up pushed into the back of my closet, but I've never gotten tired of owning them. To me they're as visually stunning today as they were when I originally discovered them.

These shirts are best viewed on a computer monitor that supports 800 X 600 resolution or higher. Also, if you have Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator, try viewing them with the fullscreen enabled (the shirts should fit on the screen that way :u).
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