Handmade Hideaway

Here at Penelope's Den, we have always been drawn to history, traditional forms of art making, and things that require great amounts of details. A textile designer by training, Joli found her passion for making jewelry grew seamlessly out of the textures, colors, and patterns that she adores on fabric. These art forms - two of our most ancient technologies - have been passed down for millennia, lost, rediscovered, and innovated upon countless times, yet they always remain fresh. The objects we use to adorn our bodies define the way we see ourselves, and how others see us. For us, this is the most rewarding aspect of the work: the ability to shape and forge new identities through tapping into something as ancient as a gemstone, as constant as the earth.

The name for this shop comes from Ancient Greek mythology, from the legend of Penelope's ingenuity and resourcefulness in the Odyssey. She is one of the few notable weavers in antiquity, and she used her skills to outsmart an entire hoard determined to overrun her queendom. She was not precious about her work. She was not afraid to undo what she spent hours making, and her ability to prioritize what was important - her family, her home - is what allowed her to persevere in the face of adversity. She is most often remembered for her loyalty, but it was her resourcefulness and lack of sentimentality about her work that should be celebrated.

Penelope offers us crafty people two crucial lessons:
1) Don't get too precious about your work. Create, then destroy. It's part of the process.
2) Think outside the box. When confronted with a challenge, don't be afraid to take risks, even if it seems like those risks include negating what you've done so far.

Joli and Scott are both philosophers by nature, and by training. They spent many years teaching, before retiring to a life of domesticity and art making. Now, they spend their time raising Beni, making art, unmaking it, and making it over again. You can find them at festivals, art shows, the occasional lecture hall, hiking through the redwoods, or tending the garden.