*This is a guest post from writer Emily Clay. Make sure to check out her bio at the bottom of the article and leave her a comment.
I have always wanted to go to Hawaii. I imagine a couple of weeks of sun, sand, palm trees, water sports, and lot of rest and relaxation. Hawaii has been even more tempting, with Aulani, A Disney Resort and Spa, opening a few years ago on the island of Oahu. New York is a solid 12-hour plane ride from this paradise, leaving me to find other ways to have part of the magic nearby.
My preferred way to accomplish this is through the Disney Dooney and Bourke bags, which enable me to carry around my favorite characters and symbols of fantasy and fun. The Aulani themed bags can only be purchased at the resort, so finding someone who is staying there to bring you back a present is ideal.
As an avid Dooney and Bourke fan, I have been keeping an eye on the Aulani releases since the beginning. The very first print was the classic Disney sketch print redone to include Aulani hotel architecture, Mickey playing the ukulele in front of a surf board, Minnie posing with her pineapple drink, Chip and Dale collecting nuts, and tropical flowers. It is an off-white pebble leather with light brown straps and trim. Much like the other sketch patterns, this one was very popular. It came in weekender, tote, letter carrier, and snap wristlet styles.
Copying a move made with the original sketch pattern, Dooney and Bourke released this pattern on brown leather with imprinted designs for a more subtle way to carry this print. This print was discontinued a couple of years ago, but the snap wristlet has popped up on the Disney Store website as recently as the end of last year.
Weekender, tote, letter carrier, and small coin purses were sold in the all-brown style.
After the sketch Aulani pattern’s run ended, Dooney and Bourke went in a completely different direction for their next Hawaii release. Switching over to nylon, the print changed over to one large image of Mickey and Minnie Mouse relaxing on the sand in front of a small body of water.
On the tote, the picture expands to show the Aulani Resort with the ocean behind it. Mickey and Minnie sit under umbrellas, with Mickey playing his ukulele and Minnie holding her ice cream cone. I especially like the thought put into the bottom of this bag, which looks like sand covered in seashells. I love the sketch Aulani pattern and I love this one too. It was released in tote, zip wristlet, and Lexi pouchette styles. The switch to nylon here was a smart one, meaning that getting sand or water on it can be easily dealt with. I’m not saying it’s a good idea to use these completely as beach bags, but those staying at the resort could use it a bit more freely with less to worry about.
This is a print that lets you bring a piece of vacation with you wherever you go and it’s not too overwhelming since it is one large image. My only issue with it the placement of the Dooney and Bourke emblem, which ends up cutting off some part of Mickey Mouse on the smaller bags. Perhaps this doesn’t bother others, but it is silly to me to be missing part of a face or ear to make room for the hardware.
Several months ago, Aulani released the newest Dooney and Bourke designs for the resort. This print features Minnie Mouse posing in a pink dress among palm trees and flowers. The color scheme is very tropical and this bag will work well during the spring and summer, whether you’re in Hawaii, at home, or anywhere else. This is being sold in shopper tote, zip satchel, and pouchette styles.
If you’re heading to Aulani, be sure to check out the new bags. Feel free to pack me in your suitcase, too.
Emily escapes the craziness of New York with her trips to Disney World. She always keeps some part of the magic with her by carrying a Disney bag or wearing a stack of Disney Alex and Ani bracelets. She travels to Disney World for at least two weeks every year and hopes to make it over to Disneyland and the international locations sometime soon. She is currently facing the challenge of finding a new favorite Disney snack, which were the sweet cream cheese-filled pretzel at Lunching Pad and the chocolate-covered pretzel rods from Goofy’s Candy Co.