Over sixty years ago, the M.Nii brand was started in a small shop on the west side of Oahu. We’ve proudly kept that tradition alive by sticking to our roots and making our clothes in America. Here our development and production manager, Raul Montano gives us a behind-the-scenes look at what goes into the process.
Originally, M.Nii clothes were not only known for their fit but also their durability. How are you carrying on that tradition with the current manufacturing?
We start by picking the finest fabrics available then we construct the garment out of a pattern built from the original specifications the Niis used in the 50s. Using high-quality thread, the garment is sewn up to endure wear and tear whether that’s from the sand, salt or other earthly elements. We want the clothes to last and we take pride in the fact that the tradition lives on.
All M.Nii clothes are made in America; in fact, right in our own backyard in Los Angeles. Does this help you keep a better idea on quality?
Producing in Los Angeles ensures that we are able to be very hands on with the product and keep a close watch on all the details that go into making our garments. This way we can guarantee we’re making the best product possible.
Using a pair of Makaha Drowners as an example, can you walk us through what goes into the process from idea to execution?
The creative team and I looked at the original construction of the Makaha Drowner and tried to match the fabric and construction as close as possible. We’ve updated the silhouette from the 50s shorter short to make them a modern fit with updates to the trim and wash.
What happens here at Luna’s?
Luna’s is our Downtown LA-based satellite office and sewing factory. Luna’s specializes in making knits. We have a woven factory that makes our M.Nii shorts and button-down shirts in a location down the road. Woven clothing is made on completely different machinery, which you’ll see at a later date.
In addition to making M.Nii knits at Luna’s, our salesmen samples and some of the printing is done here. We have separate contractors for each piece of the business, such as creating the pattern, washing/dyeing and finishing the garment. Each part of this process is what makes the M.Nii clothing special.
What does “Made in America” mean to you personally?
I like the fact that we are making a small contribution to our economy by keeping jobs in America. I feel a sense of pride when I see something is made in the US, as I immediately associate it with creativity and quality. I believe that the consumers seem to be responding to it as well!