Ni‘ihau Lei, 19-Inch 5-Strand Patch Patch Mauna Loa


Remarkable 19-inch, 5-strand Patch Patch Mauna Loa. The kahelelani (turban shells) featured are ‘ōmaʻomaʻo, ʻulaʻula, and ʻeleʻele.

Finished with two pōleholeho ʻapuʻupʻu (cowrie shells, bumpy), two puka shells, and a handmade 14K gold-filled clasp.


Medium: Niʻihau Shell
Size: 19"

Code: PANM1558 Categories: ,


A Fine Folk Art Protected By Legislation

In 2004, the House of Representatives unanimously approved H.B. No. 2569 which prohibits the sale of “seashell items” with a description or label using the term “Ni‘ihau” or “Niihau” unless 100 percent of the shells are from the island of Ni‘ihau and the item is made entirely in Hawai‘i.

Shells used to make the Ni‘ihau lei are found abundantly only on the shores of Ni‘ihau, and this legislation was intended to protect the integrity of one of the few sources of income available to the Ni‘ihau people. The terms “momi,” “kahelelani,” and “laiki” may be used to describe shells found in limited quantity on other islands, but it is illegal to apply the term “Ni‘ihau” to any of these shells.

For more information on selecting an authentic Ni‘ihau shell lei, please visit the Ni‘ihau Cultural Heritage Foundation’s website.

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