Since starting this website for Charles, it quickly became apparent that his work would be that of custom made orders. Every aspect of his orders have been specific and personalised to the recipient whether it be Pouwaka (trinket box) for pepe (baby), weapons for the Defence Force (incorporating their insignia and regiment coloured feathers) and private purchases, 21st Keys & Taonga, Waka Huia and Papahou (treasure boxes) for gifts or vessel for burial and other purposes. Each one has been made specific to recipient, from patterning to special symbols incorporated.
Charles is tikanga guided and very pedantic with his work and we feel very honoured to been given the opportunity to do this special work for those not only here in Aotearoa /New Zealand but also globally.
We have made new contacts and acquaintances, people taking time out to come and visit us to discuss their taonga (treasure) so we get it exact for them.
We have appreciated the special comments that have been expressed to us on taonga made (refer feedback page).
As a consequence of the niche we are filling, we very rarely have stock on hand to sell, but more so take orders which I factor into Charles' calendar to be able to fulfill the order by given required date.
So if you want that something special made, just flick us a message on our contact page and we will dialogue with you to get it right and special. All we ask to secure the order is a 30% deposit and payment can either be progressive or at completion of order - you decide.
All items are hand crafted including the cases.
Charles also does large scale commission work. So nothing is too small nor too big. He does it all.
Charles gained a degree in design & art through the Maori University in Otaki,Te Whare Wananga o Raukawa.
He chose to specialise in Maori taonga, the art form, meanings and significance behind patterns and designs. He has been carving for approximately 20 years. Other areas of specialty is that in Maori history and genealogy where here in the Manawatu he is regarded for his knowledge and often called upon for advice, consultation, and tracing whakapapa (genealogy).
Although Charles specialises in Maori traditional design, he also does contemporary work often experimenting with designs and patterns.
Most of his traditional work is hand crafted from NZ native timber i.e. totara, matai, maire, manuka, rata and other (dependent on availability).
His trade as a carpenter /cabinet maker gives him the knowledge and skills to implement other ideas into his work, e.g. making cases for taonga.
On a national level Charles led andwas part of a small team who presented all art work for the main stage at the 2005 National Kapa Haka Festival and then single handedly produced all stage art works from his workshop at home for the 2007 Festival which returned to Palmerston North.
He has also done other major consignments and contracts including making all taonga (taiaha, patu & ponga) for those who graduated through Te Whare Wananga o Raukawa, taiaha for masters, patu for degree and ponga for diploma students. He did this for several years.
For many years we have been active in the community, local, nationally and internationally. Charles has sat on boards and committees, educated, advised, consulted, liaised, guided, whaikorero (orator), networked, always lending an ear when needed (good listener). His wisdom comes through his humility which took him to Europe by invitation for several months to share his knowledge. Released is a book called "Te Hao Nui" The Great Catch in which Charles contributed his time and knowledge to (J.T. Stewart Taiaha and Puketotara Pou sections).
After reading this I hope it gives you a sense of knowing us a little.
Charles & I have been married 30+ years. We have four adult children and two mokopuna (grandchildren). We are both from farming backgrounds. Charles having grown up here in the Manawatu and myself in Taranaki. Charles is of Te Whanau-a-Apanui (Matenga whanau) & Ngati Raukawa/Ngati Toa/Rangitane (Te Awe Awe whanau) and I am of Taranaki (Rata whanau) & Maniapoto (Hetet whanau).
We continue to reside on Charles' family farm 18km south of Palmerston North, the place where his Tupuna (ancestors) resided, where his mother grew up, where he grew up and continuing on through the generations, the place where we bought our children up (7th generation).
Charles is a carpenter by trade, and a musician by passion, but now pursues his interest and passion for whakairo (carving) and whakapapa (genealogy). My background is mainly in administration/customer service and my interest and passions are gardening, quilting, and art, dance music & theatre. Having brought our children up in a rural community who attended the local school, I was always involved in our community having organised school fundraisers, wrote monthly community newsletter, secretary to BOT, started and ran local Playcentre, instigated and started Marae based education programmes with Charles
Through my passion for quilting, the love of colour and design and having cats, I create pet comfort products and have a website called "Gracious Pets", www.graciouspets.weebly.com Feel free to visit this site. The name came from my daughter's name, Grace.
Offering our talents and skills, I decided I would focus on ourselves and promote Charles' and my craft. So I guess I'm the "marketing person".
He has done works from the very small to large scale commissioned work. No job is too little nor too big.
SO I HOPE WE CAN OFFER YOU THAT SOMETHING SPECIAL AND WE LOOK FORWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU.
Other profiles of Charles
From grass roots country living to Marae and beyond, Charles has walked many paths and encountered many challenges, testing his commitment and passion for Te Ao Maori (the Maori World). Never did he waiver once dispite what was thrown at him, stood firm to his beliefs and rose above all. A real testimony to commitment.
Where to find us