Paiko Ohana: Jordan Lee

Jordan Lee Have you noticed how festive the shop has been looking this season? Meet Jordan Lee a 32-year old Oahu native (Mililani represent!) and Paiko's new Visual Merchandise Director.  To find out more about Jordan's aesthetic and creative background we chatted on Paiko's patio while we sipped steaming coffee from Brue Bar.


Tell us about your visual merchandising and creative background.

It all started when I was living in San Francisco, I was a full-time student at the Academy of Art as an Interior Architecture and Design major. My focus was commercial and hospitality design. I was working part-time as a sales associate at Diesel. Eventually, a position came up seeking a visual merchandiser so I worked my way up through the company as a full-time employee. I was also working at a boutique design firm but left during the economic recession. It was difficult design-wise to get a job and I was faced with a fork in the path. Ultimately I chose visual merchandising and from there I never looked back. I transferred to Diesel in Waikiki and then started working at Kate Spade as the Hawaii regional manager. Then, I was recruited to Louis Vuitton, Waikiki and I've been there for 2 years this month. It gives me the creative freedom by focusing on a product.

Holiday Visual Change-up

How did you and Paiko meet?

I met Tamara and Courtney by living in Kaka'ako and walking through the neighborhood. I'd bring my dogs Lola and Pfieffer around and would visit the shop. Lola is a huge fan of Tamara. Tamara is Lola's unofficial girlfriend so I guess we met through Lola! Eventually we all started running together through Ala Moana Beach Park- we do a 4 mile loop.


How would you describe the new Holiday visual change-up?

For Winter, we've taken inspiration from Tamara's Tantalus home. Basically making it lush, green, and alive. I imagine it in my head: a cloud rolling through the mountain. That feeling is kinda what we wanted to do with the Tantalus theme. For the holidays we used pops of red amongst the greenery. We brought Pele's hair and hanging plants to the outside of the shop to create a nice presentation. If you're walking across the street or pass by the store you'll see the elements of Paiko from the outside.

I love the shape of the Christmas tree and I've been told I merchandise in triangles. I was walking in Home Depot through their garden section and my boyfriend found a frame that was cone shaped. We used air plants and more of Pele's hair instead of using traditional ornaments and created a Tillandsia cone tree for the holidays. Holiday Change-up

How do you create? Do you have a vision board or any precedents that you follow? Where do you draw your inspiration?

Tamara, Courtney and I sit at our work table in Paiko and bounce ideas off of each other. Also when we're running we bounce ideas off of each other. When I'm walking through Waikiki, I look at store fronts and hotels for more inspiration. I'm inspired by everything, the littlest things, the hugest things... I've been noticing I'm inspired by reflections and light, as of this morning. Tamara herself is a HUGE inspiration, she always comes up with really good concepts. Holiday Change-up

What is your favorite piece of merchandise at Paiko?

I love Dee Oliva's animal planters. I've known her for a very long time, we went to high school together. When she was making miniature dogs, I asked her to make a mini Lola and mini Pfieffer. We placed the final pieces in a terrarium we had at my house and couldn't stop laughing. Tamara saw these mini dogs and that's when she first approached Dee for her merchandise.

I also love the Weck Jars and the shapes they come in. I love that they aren't just for flowers but for other things. They're not too modern but not too contemporary.


What are your thoughts about Paiko in the community, your neighborhood?

I'm so proud for how Paiko has taken form. It really has transformed the neighborhood. People come to Kaka'ako to see the shop. It's way bigger. Nikole Nelson really transformed the space and I'm amazed. Every time someone walks into the store, I look at their reaction. It's amazing. It's something Hawaii needed and something that's different here. I feel like people can sense that in a way.


Paiko's Holiday Changeover


What is your dream visualization for Paiko?

Tamara and I are interested in lifestyling the store. I would love to see the idea of not just having plants but making it into a sanctuary or a place to relax in. We have that with the addition of Brue. I love the idea of plants mixed in with books or something else that you can take home. Just having it be a lifestyle or mentality, a way of living...That's my dream for Paiko. All of the things that make Paiko what it is and bringing it home to wherever you live. Just like Hawaii has a magical quality about it, Paiko has it's own.


It's still not too late to pick up some last minute Christmas gifts. Swing by Paiko for unique gifts for your loved ones and pals this holiday season. We have extended holiday hours for your shopping pleasure.


Photographs by © Sara Mayko 2014

In Store: Paiko Holiday Workshops for December


paiko holiday workshop flyer

Tis the season for holiday decor and DIY gifts to share this winter, especially if you're seeking some handmade goodies! This December, Paiko is offering a plethora of holiday workshops for your seasonal inspiration that we can't wait to share with you. Want to have the best decked door on your block? Then maybe the Tillandsia Holiday Wreath workshop is for you. Attending the SALT Holiday Fair? Check out our Tillandsia Snowglobe class at Kaka'ako Agora. Curious about what a Kokedama is? We'll teach you at the Christmas Kokedama workshop. Hosting a Holiday party? Haku lei guru, Ann Kadowaki will kick start your Hawaiian Table Swag inspiration.

These classes compose a tight knit network of like-minded nature-loving individuals who want to be involved and spark creativity in their community. Not only are these classes educational but they're relaxing and productively stimulating.  A welcoming environment for pau hana play, pre-party girls night, or a date with your favorite person. Each class is taught by either Paiko's very own Tamara Rigney, or other respected activists in the Hawaiian horticulture community.

Interested? Check out our calendar for additional information on each workshop and to save a spot!

Here are some images from our past workshops:

Ann Kadowaki

Succulent Gardening

DIY Potting Bar


Paiko Ohana: Dee Oliva

Dee Oliva Meet Dee Oliva, local artist and a member of Paiko’s ohana. Dee’s ceramic pieces each have a life of their own, and her adorable animal planters have become an instant shop favorite. We treated Dee to a spooktacular picnic last Wednesday with homemade pumpkin seeds, Hawaiian kettle corn, and lots of caramel chocolate. With Dee’s animals joining us, it was like a picnic at a miniature zoo.

Picnic With Dee

Picnic With Dee Oliva


Dee is a ceramacist, teacher, and mentor to children island wide. Originally, she attended UH Hilo as a botany major, then transferred to UH Manoa to complete her education. Working with clay was only an extracurricular activity until one of her closest professors encouraged her to switch from botany to ceramics. Initially, Dee’s creativity flowed through her 2D pieces in drawing and painting, but embracing the 3D art form of ceramics allowed Dee to see her ideas come to life.

Her ceramic creations started out as just for fun, being able to sell them is an additional benefit. Her artistic mantra is “If you do something you love, it’s your passion, when you make money, it’s a bonus. If you’re driven and forget the anxiety or fear [of being an artist], doing what makes you happy, sooner or later something [will come out of it.]”

Animals, especially her friend’s dogs, are a major inspiration to Dee. Each pup has a different personality, and most of the ones Dee chooses tend to be quite comedic, something that becomes clear when she sees their selfies posted on Facebook. This began her extensive collection of miniature dogs, which caught the eye of Paiko’s Tamara Rigney when she spotted a couple in a friend’s terrarium.

Dee's Pots

After being introduced to Paiko, Dee started creating mini animal pots, not only of dogs, but of reptiles, dinosaurs, giraffes and more. Dee admits to being addicted to nature documentaries. When exposed to a new species on one of the 45-minute shows, she tries to envision how a plant can fit into this animal’s shape. Right now she is wrestling with the idea of an octopus.

Dee believes her pieces aren’t complete without Paiko’s touch. “1 or 2 plants can make or shape my final piece. The colors of green and grey: grass and stone fit together. It makes sense with my terra-cotta pieces,” she says, “And the whole circle of life. My pots begin with mud (the clay from the earth I use to mold,) then after it is fired another element of life is placed into it: Paiko’s succulents and soil.”

Dee describes our encounter as a magical moment: “Paiko accepts my vision and what I see when I touch clay, giving me the creative freedom to express my animal’s personalities.” To see more of Dee’s work, come by the shop and explore her curated pieces. Also you can check out her online portfolio http://antidee2.tumblr.com.


Dee Oliva


Photographs by © Sara Mayko 2014

Neighborhood Guide: Kaka'ako

By: Hannah Grgich As anyone who has visited Paiko in person knows, we are a part of a very special neighborhood: Kaka’ako.  This week we’re focusing on our block, and taking a walking tour to illustrate what’s happening in our hood. 







Historically composed of fishing villages and salt ponds, Kaka’ako has under gone many transformations over the years, and is currently evolving yet again. From a commercial center filled with warehouses and industrial businesses, this neighborhood is now known as a gathering place, where you can see artists in action, collaborate on a project, shop for one of a kind treasures, have a gastronomic experience like none other, and get to know your neighbors through events like workshops and the Honolulu Night Market.

As you meander through the streets, even in the heat of the afternoon, the sense of exhilaration and possibility is nearly palpable. Restaurants are busy serving up lunch to a diverse crowd, where you can get everything from a lobster sausage-wrapped-in-bacon hot dog to fried pa’i’ai and a salad made with local greens. Restaurants such as the Whole Ox, serve up locally sourced and cured meats to a hungry downtown lunch crowd, and our immediate neighbors Taste offer diners the experience of an ever changing roster of up and coming chefs.  The ladies of Paiko can often be seen on many a Friday night sharing a bottle of wine and hanging with neighbors on the sidewalk tables at Taste.

In addition to great food, you can’t help but stumble over the often breathtaking murals created during PowWow over the past two Februaries.  PowWow, a yearly meeting of respected artists from around the world, gives each artist a wall in Kaka’ako to turn into a masterpiece, breathing new life into old industrial facades.

Another artistic outlet in the hood, 808 Urban works with high school kids creating large scale murals throughout the island.  They have a new storefront “The Refuge” here in Kaka’ako, which hosts free workshops, lectures, and other events. Another  gallery on the block, Limb, specializes in amazing woodworking and features a changing roster of exhibits in all media.  Check them out at the Honolulu Night Markets.

After soaking up the vibrant colors of the murals, bring your laptop to do work, or just relax with a cup of Morning Glass coffee, at our good friends, bookshop/coffee shop/gallery hybrid, R/D. Also, make sure to check out the adjoining Interisland Terminal gallery for the most current exhibits from key members of Honolulu’s art scene.  On a side note, prior to our store opening at 675 Auahi St, R/D was where Tamara would hangout to get work done, initiating her into the Kaka’ako community and eventually evolving into her opening our storefront down the street. We love R/D!

Whatever you do in Kaka’ako, you will experience a microcosm of Hawaii’s urban island culture; a unique community that like the island as a whole, celebrates traditions and is embracing innovation.  At Paiko we are so happy to have found our place in this community, and hope you come visit us to experience it all yourself.

More Kaka'ako: Kaka'ako Night Market

Written by: Hannah Grgich

Paiko In Full Swing aka 'A Synopsis of Our First Fifty Eight Days'

Paiko Hawaii Honolulu Wow, where have the past 58 days gone? It's hard to believe that Paiko has been open for business that long. So much has happened and yet, there is still so much more to do! A few things are for certain, Tamara and I have been loving spending our days in the shop, chatting with our customers, laughing and finding our inner flower humor, learning oh so very much and finding out how little sleep we actually need to function.

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On Tuesday December 12th we invited a few friends, family and neighbors to the shop to help us celebrate the opening of our doors. We definitely felt the love and were touched by all the support we received from our dear friends, old and new.

Not long after we opened, the Rogue Christmas Honolulu Night Market took place and Paiko stayed open late to join in the festivities. We had yummy Christmas snacks and wassel in the shop along with leaf printing on Kraft paper by our dear friend and resident artist, Kristen Maize. The next day the first Pinch of Salt day market was held and boy were we busy. We love our neighborhood and were thrilled to be apart of these two great events! The next Honolulu Night Market is coming up on Saturday February 16th and we cannot wait!!!

After the holidays we were able to regroup and briefly catch our breaths, but just for moment- as we needed to spring into action for the Valentines Day preparations and in the planning for our first workshop on Tuesday, February 19th. Stay tuned for more on that....and for all the exciting things Paiko has in store for 2013!

More Paiko Storefront: Kaka'ako Here We Come675 Auahi is Open

Kaka'ako Night Market

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  Here at Paiko we have a lot to be thankful for this year, especially the support and love from all of our amazing friends.  We could not do this next chapter in Kakaako without you guys!! We are especially grateful to Rich at RDC Design for the absolutely stunning work he has done on the build out of our new space. With that being said, this past Saturday's Kakaako Night Market was another occasion achieved with the help of our friends, many of whom were made in the Kakaako community in the past few months.  We especially want to thank Sean, Wei and the rest of the team at Interisland Terminal and R/D  for featuring our pop up flower shop, 'Feel Free Store', on the rickshaw at R/D that night.  The 'Free Store Rickshaw' is a creation by Tadpole Studios and is designed to be a transportable pop up store. Before its debut at R/D, the rickshaw was a part of the Fresh Flowers show at the Honolulu Museum of Art.

Our other location that night was in the Pinch of Salt market around the corner.  This marketplace, constructed almost entirely of recycled materials, is awesome, and will be in place indefinitely.  It was a great place to have our first night of connecting with the public and displaying some of our living creations.  As the night went on, it brought huge smiles to our faces to see people walking around with giant pink king protea protruding from under their arms.  Kakaacool!

Paiko Pop up store

 Lady slipper orchids

Paiko Pop up store

 Courtney, Kalena, and Tamara

Paiko pop up store

We had great neighbors that night, and I've probably worn my organic tank from 'Life is Swell' at least three times in the past week..

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 Succulents were a big hit as were our bud vase creations

Paiko pop up store

 The "Feel Free Store' in R/D

Paiko Pop up store

Protea from Kula and uluhe fern curls from Hilo

More Kaka'ako: Neighborhood Guide: Kaka'ako