Koa wood drop earrings set in stainless steel
This new design blends the warmth of the koa wood with cool steel, with a beautiful and durable result. A portion of each sale is donated to non-profit organizations working towards establishing sustainable native forests in Hawaii. We sincerely thank you for your support.
Metal: Stainless Steel
Wood Inlay: Hawaiian Koa
Engraving: Hawaiian Island Chain
Size: Water Drop Shape Approx. 3/4″ x 1/2″
Includes 18″ Stainless Steel Box Chain
Made by Che Garcia with all woodwork done on the Big Island, with Hawaiian koa wood.
From the Bishop Museum’s Ethnobotany Database,
Hawaiian Name(s): koa
Scientific Name: Acacia koa
Vernacular Name: none
Description: Large trees, to 25 m tall.
Habitat Common in dry to wet forests 60-2060 m on most main islands (Wagner et al. 1990:641–642).
Medicines: The young leaves used to induce sleep for cramps or fevers; ashes of burnt leaves smeared on lesions for ‘ea (thrush) and pa‘ao‘ao in children (Chun 1994:156).
Non Medicinal Uses: Noted as “one of the most common trees on all islands…equally useful for fuel and construction”; trunks (in former times) used for great war canoes (Hillebrand 1888:113); bark for dye and tanning, all types of canoes, paddles (Degener 1930:177-8; Malo 1951:20); branches used in rituals (Malo 1951:174); bark for dye, wood for surfboards (Krauss 1993:65, 96); Abbott (1992:68) says no record of koa for traditional house building. Wood traditionally used as bearing sticks and kahili handles (Lamb 1981:47); now for furniture and bowls, but calabashes for food (‘umeke) were not traditionally made from koa as a bad taste was imparted. Wood also used in making weapons (Abbott 1992:110). Sometimes placed on hula altars (Pukui 1942). In the Ethnology Collection at Bishop Museum there is a contemporary example of koa used in part of a large pump drill.
Specific gravity of wood: 0.55
`Ōlelo Noeau: [I] E ola koa. Live like a koa tree. Live a long time, like a koa tree in the forest. [II] Ha‘alele i Puna na hoaloha e. Left in Puna are the friends. Said of one who has deserted his friends. Originally said of Hi‘iaka when she left Puna. [III] Ka ulu koa i kai o Oneawa. The koa grove down at Oneawa. From the legend of Hi‘iaka. Canoes are sometimes referred to as the koa grove at the sea, for canoes in ancient times were made of koa. [IV] Lihu‘e ho‘a wahie lala koa. Lihu‘e lights fires with koa branches. Lihu‘e, O‘ahu, once had a grove of koa trees whose brances were used for firewood.
`Umeke `ai is an honored implement in a Hawai`i home, for through the ceremony of eating poi one at a time from the bowl at the center, the traditions and protocol of Kanaka Maoli is maintained. The `umeke `ai filled with kalo (taro) is considered the means of survival of the people of Hawai`i Nei.