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Parting Shot

With 50 years behind it, Hawaii Business looks back and looks ahead

1971 Not Just a Fad

In the fashion world, it is said that trends always come around. As a consumer, you might have to wait a decade for designers to integrate past favorites, but some trends just stick. In 1971, Hawaii Business covered the up-and-coming success of Crazy Shirts, a local company that specialized in creating T-shirts with off-the-wall slogans and designs.

The first Crazy Shirts store opened in the International Market Place in 1964 and, in 1971, sales were about $500,000. Today, there are 34 Crazy Shirts stores around the world, and in 2005, the company’s sales were $45.6 million.

In 1971, Crazy Shirts had 150 designs and conveyed popular messages of the ’70s, from profound statements about peace and war to love and Hawaiiana. Today, designs have changed from the political messages of the ’70s to convey a more leisurely, whimsical style, according to Mark Hollander, president and CEO of Crazy Shirts. Many Crazy Shirts designs are region-specific and, in Hawaii, floral and water themes continue to resonate. There are 12 in-house Crazy Shirts designers and artists and about 200 freelancers from around the world. The company’s offerings have grown to 400 designs and with the continued popularity of graphic t-shirts, it appears Crazy Shirts was not just a fad.

“Just changing the word ‘tourist’ to ‘visitor’ has done magic for us [Kauai]. The attitude of the people has changed to accept visitors.”

- Kauai’s mayor Tony Kuminura on tourism in Hawaii Business 1986.

1969 Keep On Chuggin’

For more than a century, Young Brothers Ltd. has provided Hawaii with continuous interisland cargo transportation. As advertised in this 1969 ad, Young Brothers makes every effort to meet schedules, so its clients can meet theirs. Providing excellent customer service is still a part of this 106-year-old company’s mission statement. Earlier this year, the company announced it will spend $186 million on new equipment, including eight barges, six tugboats and ship containers over the next 10 years.

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Hawaii Business,July