Maui Finalists Seek Votes for Martha Stewart American Made Contest
Four Maui businesses, finalists that made it through the first round of judging by a panel of experts in the the Martha Stewart American Made contest, are seeking online votes for The Audience Choice Award. Voting ends at midnight on Oct. 19, 2015.
Supporters can vote up to six times per day, with weekly prizes going to the most active voters.
Several of the finalists are Made in Maui County vendors.
The finalists from Maui are:
Maui Koa Wood Creations Owner Calisto Palos runs his business out of his backyard shop in Ha‘ikū. He crafts items made from local, downed woods, and does not cut live trees. His business is a finalist in the Crafts, Nature Crafts category.
Palos began his business when he became an outrigger canoe paddler.
“My paddle broke, so i decided to make my own… from there, I just took off making all kind of crafts using scraps from the paddle,” said Palos.
He makes canoe paddles, outrigger canoes, lauhala strippers to make mats and hats, tapa beaters to make material for clothing, poi boards to pound poi, spears, walking sticks canes—“all the things that are needed to keep the culture alive,” said Palos.
He said his inspiration came from his dad, who used to make toys “because we were to poor to buy the store-made products. I always used to help him make our toys and I enjoyed creating things out of nothing and seeing them work. So now, here I am doing the things I like to do.”
Vote for Maui Koa Wood Creations here.
The Maui Closet Company in Kahului, owned by Debra Finkiewicz, “designs manufactures and installs space-saving and efficient products to enhance your living style.” The company is a finalist in the Design, Furniture & Home Accessories category.
“We meet with clients, design their dreams of organization, working with their space, their needs and their budget,” said Finkiewicz in her contest profile. “We maximize the use of an area with creative and user-friendly design.”
The company’s products are manufactured locally with a wide variety of materials.
“Customer service is our primary focus,” Finkiewicz continued, highlighting that the company has a e pay-it-forward philosophy as a team and “for the best interest of our clients.”
The company specializes in wall beds. With the limited space of living on an island, they give you two rooms in one, said Finkiewicz.
“We are blessed to stay busy and are always creating new and innovative designs to save space and time for our clients,” said Finkiewicz.
Vote for The Maui Closet Company here.
Two Chicks In A Hammock LLC in Pukalani is a finalist in the Food, Bottled, Jarred & Canned category.
“Backyard Juice Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water is our version of a condiment used in Hawai‘i.” said co-owners Michelle Jones and Katherine Crosby. “It gives a spicy/vinegar kick to anything you put it on.” The recipe is based on Crosby’s grandma’s formulation.
The business was started in 2013, “after years of people asking for refills, telling us we needed to sell it in stores,” the partners said.
They decided to take a leap, bottle it professionally and see where it took them. Starting out in just one store in June 2013, Backyard Juice can now be found in 92 stores across the state. The business partners just acquired a distributor, Five-O Marketing, which will deliver to stores statewide, create promotional ads, conduct sampling events and push the product into new markets.
With no business training or culinary degrees, the Two Chicks have managed to find their niche in a hot market saturated with sauce competitors. They say they have their hands full as demand grows for an island favorite.
Vote for Two Chicks In A Hammock here.
Wrappily, a “smart, new take on wrapping paper,” uses local newspaper presses to print patterns on 100% recyclable and compostable newsprint. Owner Sara Smith is a finalist in the Crafts, Paper Crafts category.
The Kula resident founded Wrappily in 2013 with the goal to “green-up giving.”
“I used to dread the wasted gift wrap at the end of the party, especially after learning that it generates over four million tons of trash every year,” said Smith. “It’s non-recyclable, and saving it was getting overwhelming. The heavy burden I felt over what to do with the piles of discarded wrap lead me to a ‘what-if’ realization: what if wrapping paper could be printed at the local newspaper press, so it was made locally and easy to recycle? Wrappily’s uncoated paper is decidedly fresh, our crisp, reversible prints wrap a great gift—and not at the expense of the environment.”
“We collaborate with independent artists for adorably chic and varied pattern collections,” said Smith.
Vote for Wrappily here.