Aloha Airmail

April 2, 2012 | By Waikiki Magazine Team

The spirit of the islands is embodied on a postage stamp.

Those keen on sticking to the time-honored tradition of mailing loved ones a postcard from their favorite destinations will get an added bit of aloha this year. Look closely: In the upper right-hand corner of your postcard may be the first official United States Postal Service “Aloha Shirt” stamp.

That’s right—the often loud and colorful aloha shirt (as it’s known here in Hawai‘i; known as the “Hawaiian shirt” elsewhere)—was selected from more than 50,000 entries throughout a decade-long campaign.

A little tidbit behind the stamps: They are the product of local photographer Ric Noyle, who was actually working on a photographic book about the storied shirts from which the stamp images are collected. Noyle shot more than 570 aloha shirts, each of which took exhaustive efforts in lighting and capturing.

Each of the five different stamps features a unique pattern and theme. Two depict the surfing community; one of the islands’ geological creation; a fourth of the sea life; and the final stamp features some colorful flora.

Those interested in purchasing the stamps can do so at or inquire at the Waikiki Post Office on Saratoga Road. [C:6 Waikiki Map]

Photos: Ric Noyle