Treehouse store inspires keiki to be creative

Child's Play

Lei Chic

It's hot outside. Like, really hot.

The kind of hot that makes you want to blow off work and hole up in your treehouse. You know, your top secret hideout filled with awesome skateboards, art supplies and air conditioning.

Oh, your treehouse doesn't have all that? Don't worry. We've got the password to one that does.

Lei Chic Introducing Treehouse, a creative arts store now open on Ward Ave. Consider it the urban version of a traditional treehouse, tucked away on the second floor of a small shopping complex. A short climb up the stairs and you'll find a warm, inviting space designed to inspire kids big and small.

Little ones will love Melissa & Doug's Scratch Art, square black sheets that scratch off to reveal bold, colorful designs, or Creativity for Kids' Make Your Own Cupcake Soaps kits. Budding artists can also take advantage of the store's dedicated play station stocked with paper and jumbo colored pencils.

Then there are the big kid toys: vintage-inspired Lomography film cameras, custom EZ Ryder Originalz skateboards, and impressive coffee table books by pop artists like Anthony Lister and Tiffany Bozic.

Lei Chic Once you've been initiated, feel free to don a Treehouse-exclusive shirt or baseball cap. Owner Bobby Asato designs his own colorful Small Kine youth shirts and Bland men's shirts covered in original art, photography and woodblock prints.

And get ready for monthly meetings. The store eventually plans to host art workshops that will be open to kids of all ages.

Except the ones with cooties.

Treehouse, 250 Ward Ave., Suite 233, located on the corner of Ward Ave. and Auahi St., above First Hawaiian Bank and Kramer's Big & Tall. For more information, call (808) 597-8733 or visit