White Ni’ihau/Kahelelani Shell Flower Earrings. These earrings are unique and are sure to make a statement. The Ni’ihau/Kahelelani are found on the beaches of Kauai and are attached to 14k Gold-plated ear wires. These go great with our Puka Shell Necklace, Puka Shell Bracelet, or Puka Shell Anklet.
Legally, this term refers only to shells actually gathered on the shores of the Forbidden Island. However, the term generally refers to three different shells that are commonly used to make Ni‘ihau shell lei: kahelelani, momi, and lāiki, as well as a fourth one, kāmoa, which is frequently used to add contrasting color.
Because these shells have a variety of colors and markings, Ni‘ihau artisans use descriptive terms to differentiate them.
Shells are generally identified by first indicating the kind of shell, such as kahelelani, momi, lāiki, etc., and then adding any qualifying terms, usually relating to color. Common colors are ke‘oke‘o (white), ‘ākala (pink), lenalena (yellow), and ‘ōma‘oma‘o (green). Shades of colors are often identified as ‘āhiehie (light) or ikaika (dark). A few other terms include kahakaha (striped), ‘ōnikiniki (spotted), ‘āpu‘upu‘u (bumpy), and even waha ‘ula‘ula (red mouth).