Naupaka, nau.paka: n. native species of shrubs (scaevola) found in the mountains and near the coast of the Hawaiian island chain.
Dedicated to my designer Tanya Uyehara's sister, Jasmine Naupaka. The Hawaiian legend tells how Princess Naupaka fell in love with a commoner, a fisherman named Kau’i. In ancient times this was forbidden. Therefore Naupaka was banished to live in the mountain, and Kau’i forced to live near the ocean. The flower grows naturally as a little white half flower because the lovers were torn apart. Some say, if you pick a flower near the ocean, and try to walk it to the mountain it dies before it gets there, and vice versa, because the lovers can never be together again.
Laha'ole means rare, choice, unique. Born and raised on the island of Oʻahu, Native Hawaiian owner and designer Tanya Uyehara has always enjoyed creating. Born into a family of craftsmen and women, musicians, hula dancers and artists, she has always been surrounded by natural beauty and the arts.
Established in 2013, Laha'ole Designs began while Tanya was on maternity leave with her fourth child. With a desire to craft Christmas gifts for her nieces, she took a class at a local jewelry store to learn how to solder metal. From there, she experimented with wire wrapping and manipulating metals to shape the designs she dreamt up.
Realizing there are many talented jewelry makers and designers, she wanted to fashion beautiful pieces that were also unique and meaningful, while sharing her Hawaiian culture. It was then that Tanya began designing with heart, dedicating her creations to the people she loves and things she treasures in Hawai‘i. Her jewelry brings light to native Hawaiian flowers, shares generational stories and highlights an appreciation and awareness of Hawai‘i’s beauty.
Laha‘ole Designs’ pieces are made to share a story that brings them to life, and connects you to them.