Sunday, December 29, 2013

Buy Handmade vol 88

This week we head to Portugal..

Name: PUKACA - Isabel Vaz & Nuno Dias
Age: 8 years (PUKACA) - 40 years old (us 2)
Occupation: designers

"Tell us a little about yourself."
PUKACA was founded in 2005 by industrial designer Isabel Vaz & designer Nuno Dias. The team has dedicated people committed to design and manufacture unique creations, that are made thinking about and for children. Functionality and fun, allying innovative design with handmade Portuguese handicrafts.

"When did you start creating and how long have you been on Etsy?"
We started to work together in the university and some years later we decided to create our own brand and started to put our ideas into practice. PUKACA was born at the same time as our son, Afonso in 2005, and we've opened our shop in Etsy in 2011.

"How did you come up with your business name, is there any special meaning behind it?"
Well, that's a long story. 

It all began with our felt finger puppets. The first one we made, a scarab/beetle, needed a name.
In ancient Egypt, the scarab was seen as a symbol of a heavenly cycle and of the idea or rebirth or regeneration.

Beetles roll dung into a ball as food and as a brood chamber in which to lay eggs that are later transformed into larva.

We decided to make a wordplay with "pu" that means "poo" and "kaca" that means "poo" in Portuguese. 

This is a great private joke, until today. : )

Our scarab had a name, PUKACA.

Has your Etsy shop become your full time job? If not, would you like it to be?
Our Etsy shop is one of our online shops where you can find us. All of them together, are a full time job.

How would you describe your creative process?
Isabel loves to draw small creatures and Nuno loves to make them alive. We love to feel that our creations bring joy and happiness to everyone.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
Our inspiration comes from the ages when children constructed their own toys or, invented their own stories.

In that universe existed several toys. Puppets, paper theaters, paper dolls, among others.
Our favorite themes are the traditional tales, the Brothers Grimm, the La Fontaine fables, the Medieval stories, the Circus, the Pirates, the Natural World and all the other worlds that belong to the children's imaginary.

Do you also sell your work at craft shows?
We usually participate in some craft shows in Portugal. 
In Lisbon, in Crafts & Design Fair, in the beautiful garden of Estrela; and in the CCB Market in Centro Cultural de BelĂ©m. And in Oporto, in the Annual Event of the Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art.

What is your most cherished handmade item?
The Medieval Castle Paper Theater is our jewel.

Apart from creating things, what do you like to do?
We love to travel, cycling and to visit museums. This is really inspiring to our work.

Was there ever any other job you dreamed of having growing up?
No. What can be more fun than having a toy factory? This is the perfect job!

Five years from now you will be…
We want to have a ton of creations on the hands of children all over the world. We have a lot of ideas to get out of our heads!

Describe yourself in five words:
Creative, fun, energetic, idealist and a dreamer.

Carrying on with the five theme, if I were to turn on your <insert whatever type of music player you use here>, what five artists/songs would I see on your recently played list?
Elvis - A Little Less Conversation (A little less conversation, a little more action please)
Bobby McFerrin - Don't Worry Be Happy
Lou Reed - Perfect Day
John Lennon - Imagine
The Lion King - Hakuna Matata