E komo mai! We are Pūkele Designs, a toy and activity company based out of Pūkele in Pālolo Valley on Oʻahu. My name is Alisa and I am an elementary school teacher. My husband Nate, also a former educator, and I recently became first time parents. As parents tend to do, we excitedly started to look for fun and engaging toys and activities for our daughter. The more we looked, the more disappointed we became. We realized that the options available to us commercially mostly focused on things and topics that our little one will rarely, if ever, actually see. We want our daughter to grow up knowing about and appreciating our island home. And so we set out to create toys and activities that feature things the keiki of Hawaiʻi will recognize from their daily life. We want her to know about ʻiwa instead of woodpeckers and even be able to recognize a mongoose rather than a squirrel. And we want her to know about and understand the unique ecosystem of plants and animals found here, even the parts she may never see because they are already gone forever or currently critically endangered.
Our logo was designed with the Hawaiian environment in mind. It depicts wind, wings, and waves, the three modes of travel that brought all living things to Hawaiʻi. We hope to use important educational ideas like this in our future toys and activities. We believe that toys should be special, and we believe in supporting our community. To that end, we create all the designs for our toys and activities in-house and handcraft as much as we possibly can ourselves. When we are not able to hand make an item ourselves, we look to support local vendors and manufacturing companies as often as possible. We know that we live in a global world, and not all raw materials can possibly come from Hawaiʻi, but consciously choosing to support local when we can is important for us and our business.
We plan to do drops of locally themed toys and activities that will help you expose your keiki to the many things that make Hawaiʻi the unique place we all love.