A Unique Kapa‘a Boutique

Corine Billedo shares a laugh with Dawn Kaneholani at Collectible Designs. Amanda C. Gregg photos

Corine Billedo
Owner, Collectible Designs

Tell us about your business. Our store name is Collectible Designs. We are known for our original pareo dresses, which are locally made. About 90 percent of our store’s merchandise is locally designed or created in the Hawaiian Islands. We walk a fine line for local clientele and for the visitors. We try to be different from other boutiques and have mostly oneof-a-kind items.

How did you get started in this business and how long has it been going?

This business was actually started about 10 years ago when I found myself without a job. I had always been a sort of craft-oriented person from very young age it runs in the family. So I started off doing local craft fairs, mostly making jewelry. I had always wanted a store. We have since expanded to having clothing. We have been in this location for about three-and-a-half years.

Where are you from originally, and what role, if any, does that play in your business? I’ve been on Kaua’i for about 40 years, raised my daughters and always used to sew and create things for them. I was raised in Southern California in a small beach town, so I was always geared for beachy-type things.

The shop offers not only clothing, but jewelry as well

What is your specialty? Our pareo dresses. We have different styles. Our designs come from local designers throughout the Hawaiian Islands.

What sets your business apart? We try really hard to be different from other boutiques and galleries. We try not to carry what other people have. I always listen to my staff’s input and ask for their decisions before deciding on what to carry in our store.

Why do you do what you do? I enjoy it.

What motivates you to get up and go to work every day? It’s such an awesome feeling to make something and actually see people wear it. We have made items for a lot of pageant girls and celebrities, which is really nice.

Do you have a business motto or philosophy for doing business? My philosophy or motto which was actually taught to me by my father, who was a successful businessman is to treat people with respect and to do the right thing.

What is the most challenging aspect of your business? The most challenging part of the business is to try to keep things fresh and exciting in our designs. We are always looking for something new to offer our clientele. Our plan is to make this work and keep it going.

What is your business plan for the future?

We are currently working on a website design and hope to have that up and going in the near future. We have customers on the Mainland and other islands who contact us and really want to see more items. Hopefully this will work for them. Until then, we have a Facebook page called Collectible Designs Kaua’i where people can find us.

We are located in the historical Seto Building across the street from Kapa’a Ball Park. Our hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays, and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays.