About Us

Custom apparel in Honolulu

Founded in 1976, BB Embroidery was formed out of a partnership between Harold Bartell and Bill Thompson. Since the beginning, we've made it our mission to provide great timely embroidery services to the Honolulu community. Read on to learn more about how we got our start in the business!

In 1976...

Harold “Bart” Bartell and Bill Thompson were partners in the boat/marine supply business when they encountered a need for custom embroidered shirts for the Waikiki Yacht Club. After several thwarted attempts to find an embroidery company near the Orient, they found a broken down mechanical embroidery machine in Honolulu. A handshake and a promise later, they were tearing the machine apart and getting in touch with the manufacture to repair the machine. Within 2 weeks the machine was running and the self teaching began.

It wasn’t long before they realized the need for a local embroidery shop in the Honolulu community. Soon BB (Bart & Bill) Embroidery began automatically embroidering designs for Tori Richards, Pomare, Malia and Crazy Shirts, to name just a few. A small 300 sq. foot space in the old Ironworks building (Restaurant Row today) was home and the business quickly became popular. 
Photo of Bart Bartell

In 1980...

In 1980 Bart bought out Bill, and BB turned into a family business, but they have preserved Bill's legacy to this day. Today it is run by Bart’s 2 sons Mike and Tod and presided over by their mom, Gay. A 41 high speed electronic embroidery head handles the production.

Where we are today

Over the years, BB Embroidery has expanded into the promotional products industry. Thousands of different printable products complement our embroidery offerings. Businesses large and small, clubs, organizations, military, local and federal government agencies count themselves as our loyal customers and we're grateful for all the support we've received from the Honolulu community. Speak with us today to see what we can do for you!

Call us today! 808- 841-7351

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