Dajia Quitevis is a Lanai girl, through and through. “I can’t imagine living anywhere else. Lanai will always be my home,” she said.
Now, this entrepreneur is growing her jewelry business, Honey Love Lanai, on the island and gaining a following online with the help of social media and Etsy.
A young artist on Lanai
Growing up, Quitevis had to find activities to keep busy. Inspired by the natural beauty around her, she was drawn to explore the arts at a young age.
“When I was in elementary school, I visited Lanai Art Center almost every afternoon,” said Quitevis. “I painted silk scarves with Mrs. [Helen] Fujie. I often would paint scenes of sea creatures on the scarves.”
Dancing hula gave her another outlet to explore her creativity. “When learning hula, I learned skills like lei making, which required working with my hands. I enjoyed doing those kinds of things.”
Learning a new craft
In 2012, a life-changing event brought Quitevis and her husband, Keala, to Oahu. She gave birth to her youngest child, a baby girl, but not without complications. Quitevis spent a few months on Oahu so her newborn daughter could receive specialized medical treatment.
During that time, Quitevis had the opportunity to learn another craft: silversmithing. She began taking classes with the intention of creating jewelry as a hobby.
After returning to Lanai, she soon learned that it proved difficult to work full-time while being a mother to three young girls. In the very little free time that she did have, Quitevis continued to hone her jewelry making skills.
“At that time, handcrafted jewelry was gaining popularity. Many of my friends and family encouraged me to sell the pieces that I made.”
And so Honey Love Lanai was born. Quitevis jumped at the opportunity to pursue her passion of jewelry making while giving her more time to be a mother to her daughters.
Where to find Honey Love Lanai
Over the past six years, Honey Love Lanai has gained a following on Instagram and Etsy. Quitevis’ unique handcrafted items include custom hand-stamped bangles, earrings and necklaces. She likes to utilize a variety of materials, but her most popular pieces are made with Tahitian or other types of pearls.
Working with local businesses, Quitevis has been able to host pop-ups to make her jewelry available to residents and visitors. She has a regular pop-up at Richard’s Market on the first Sunday of each month, and at most Fifth Friday events.
This November, you can find Honey Love Lanai making its second appearance at the Made in Maui County Festival — perfect timing for picking up unique holiday gifts.
Visit honeylovelanai.etsy.com to place custom orders, and follow @honeylove_lanai on Instagram for the latest news and pop-up information.