“Aloha” shirts, as they are sometimes called
Brightly colored Hawaiian shirts confirm Florida’s kick-back surfer attitude and give you an immediate sense of relaxation. Choosing one becomes a personal statement that says a lot about your individuality.
Since the 1930s, the radiant colors, tropical illustrations and flowery patterns have captivated Florida’s tourists and surfers who proudly brought them back home. The straight-cut shape (never worn tucked in) keeps you cool. Price ranges may vary, but the best ones have carefully matched patterns. The origins of the floral patterns can be traced to Japanese designs and go back hundreds of years in the South Seas. “Aloha” shirts, as they are sometimes called, were first created for tourists during the 1930s. Hawaiian businessmen wore them to support local clothing manufacturers.
President Truman worn them and their popularity soared during WW II when servicemen and women brought them back from Hawaii as gifts for family and friends. Bing Crosby and other celebrities began wearing them in the evening in California and the trend caught on in Florida. Hollywood’s svelte movie starlets popularized sundresses with gorgeous ginger and hibiscus patterns. Celebrities from Elvis to Jimmy Buffett and the cast of USA’s Burn Notice have kept them in style. Tom Selleck’s Magnum P.I. shirt from the 70s is in the Smithsonian Institute.
If you’ve got an old one in the closet, you should know that vintage shirts are a collector’s item and have sold for thousands of dollars. Wildly colorful, loose fitting and comfortable, the shirts are a natural choice in Florida. Worn on dress-down Fridays, the shirts send a message about your individuality.Both gals and guys love that breast pocket—the perfect place for your sunglasses—so stock up and take a few home for your TGIF wardrobe.