Our contemporary [Pacific Commercial Advertiser] talks very emphatically about Hawaiian made hats, worn much of late by the native women. It says they are made of a grass called “makaloa ihi,” which is very “abundant,” and it can’t explain why the women’s hats are so much dearer than the men’s hats. Had it asked the first native it saw, it would have been told that the mens’ hats are made of the makaloa grass, which is tolerably abundant, and the women’s hats of the Ihiihi grass, which is very scarce, short, and tiresome to braid. We and many other foreigners have patronised the manufacture by using hats of both kinds in our families. Why don’t the Advertiser do the same, instead of talking about it? And we think that what “is exceedingly neat and a most graceful article” for a pretty Hawaiian face, would not disgrace the looks of a foreign born lady, especially when she can have it made in “a style and variety” to correspond with the latest fashion plates. It is pleasant to see that several foreign ladies have already adopted the Ihiihi hats, and the demand is increasing.
(Polynesian, 11/30/1861, p. 2)