Aloha Kahelelani's blog is here to increase your knowledge about the art of Niihau shells!
Extremely Rare Pink Sunrise
I recently completed this unique pink sunrise shell lei with over 1000 kahelelani shells and kamoa accents. Kamoa are the yellow shells that are visible in the strand. Only one out of many thousands of sunrise shells(pectec Langfordi) is a true pink. You'll see a fair number of various colored ones with pink in the heel. It rarely extends beyond the flanges or wings of the shell. Evan Yerman came up with the custom clasp design by having his goldsmiths make a wax mold of a granulated cowrie that i found on the north shore of Kauai. It was then cast in 18k gold. Not only is the clasp beautiful, but it is very secure and easy to operate. It is the only one that was made. This pieces is listed in my store. If you are looking for the ultimate gift for a woman who loves pink, this is it!
Kahelelani is a tiny snail found only in the Hawaiian Islands. It's scientific name is leptothyra verruca. Giant winter swells from the north bring these shells over the reef from the deep water and onto the beaches where they can be collected. Not every swell will coincide with proper tides and other factors to produce quantities of shells and one can never know exactly when it will be good. Because of these factors, the majority of shells are usually gathered over a small number of days when everything lines up! Last season, I got the majority of my stash in about twenty days of collection. I continually monitor conditions so I don't miss these big episodes. On typical days, there aren't enough shells on the beach to make it worthwhile. When it is happening, you need to put in as much time as you can and get as many shells as possible. The next swell can take everything away!