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Tricia Allen

Posted by NĀ KOA

Tricia Allen
Tricia Allen created a traditional tattoo design for nakoa

Tricia Allen 

Tricia Allen is extraordinary in both worlds that she inhabits: 

She is a blond haole woman who has tattooed over 800 members of the Polynesian community (and over 11000 people in total). She is highly respected and loved by the many Polynesian artists who she has mentored throughout her career.  Indeed, she is one of only a handful of people who have directly contributed to the revival of traditional tattooing throughout the Pacific Islands.

On the other hand, Tricia is also an academic, a cultural anthropologist, researcher, curator of museum exhibits, and author.  She wrote the two best selling books on Polynesian and Hawaiian Tattoos to make the information easily available.

Her first book, Tattoo Traditions of Hawai’i, sold out its first printing in a record 7 months and won the Reader’s Choice award in the Hawai’i Book Publisher’s Association, and her second title, The Polynesian Tattoo Today, was even more successful winning two first place awards. Her books are essential reading for anyone with an interest in Polynesian tattoo. 

Tricia Allen designed a Samoan tattoo cuff for Nakoa


Since 1992 she has been traveling to contribute to and to research the revival of the arts in the Pacific as well as mentoring and teaching gifted local artists in tattooing.  Some of today’s biggest names in authentic Polynesian tattoo credit her with their start in the art.

Her work has taken her to Samoa, Aotearoa, (New Zealand), New Caledonia, the Society Islands, the Marquesas and Rapa Nui (Easter Island), as well as numerous museums and institutions abroad.  

Tricia's tattoo studio is in Kaneohe, Oahu and she regularly travels to Northern and Southern California to tattoo clients there.

Get in touch with Tricia at her website or her email

Tricia created the Samoan and Tongan art for the Malie cuff bracelet.