A gift of love to the people of Whitianga
Bess Kingi has a gift for Whitianga - a Kakahu. She is the owner of ‘Besshandz Embroidered Monograms’ operating 28 years, incorporating clothing repairs. Bess is part of “Te Roopu Whatu Kakahu” who meet weekly at the Social Services Centre to weave and whatu kakahu under the guidance of talented Kaiako, Deborah Phillips.
It was during lockdown that I decided to whatu a Kakahu for the community of Whitianga, as my own has been borrowed on many occasions for various events. Materials became scarce during lockdown so our roopu and people from the community donated feathers, with the majority of the feathers being given by our kotako. “I took five months to weave this Kakahu. It will be very useful for weddings, 21st celebrations, graduations, funerals and unveilingsand other significant occasions,” Bess says. “I have already got the Kakahu booked for two events.” She adds with a smile, “Actually, when the mayor is elected, we have already got the Kakahu ready.