Jen Jedda is not one to sit still. Since catching the travel bug in college, she has traveled to over 35 countries, lived in five, and picked up two new languages along the way.
She has also picked up countless treasures and sources for one-of-a-kind accessories and home accents, which she decided to share last July with the launch of her e-boutique JJ Caprices. We caught up with the nomad during some rare downtime in her Seattle home.
What is your driving vision for JJ Caprices?
I want it to be a place where those who admire unique things and quality come because they know they will find inspiring, handcrafted, standout pieces. I also hope that my shop stirs up memories of personal journeys or plants seeds of future adventures.
Eventually I'd like to evolve some of my trips into shopping "missions," looking for a special pair of earrings in Paris for a customer who will be new bride, or for someone seeking a specific Pashmina color while in Kashmir. I want the shop to always be a journey of discovery.
How does an item make the cut?
It has to capture and mesmerize me. Whenever I see something that I consider stunning I literally lose my breath. Once I get my senses back, I learn more about its back story—who made it, how it was created, special attributes and techniques that make it extraordinary. I love to get lost in a story of a piece, and I only chose those that are the most interesting visually and intellectually. I also only select items and designers that I have discovered in their country of origin. Everything must be handmade in its country and hand-selected by me.
Favorite shopping cities around the world:
Having lived in Paris I go a little crazy when I am there. I love to shop in New York, too. But really, I feel like I can make discoveries almost anywhere. I have found wonderful pieces for myself and the shop in itty bitty towns in Costa Rica, Spain, Bhutan, and Mexico. Special finds off the beaten path are my favorite.
What is your most treasured purchase from your travels?
I am particularly proud of a woven basket done by the women of the Wounaan tribe in the Panamanian rain forest, whose work is considered some of the best in the world. It took about a year to weave. I picked up some smaller versions featured in the shop. I also have some elegant, flamenco-inspired earrings that I got in Sevilla, Spain when I lived there. I fell in love with the creations by Dublos, and am now only one of two shops in America to carry their work. Lastly, a little bowl that I bought in Bhutan at a market. It is made of amber and has intricate silver carvings with important symbols of the country.
Read more about Jedda's life and travels on her blog, One Girl's Adventures.