For as long as she could remember, Letty Nava had wanted to own and operate her own shop. “It was a long-distance goal,” muses Letty. The years flew by, and as is often the case, she ended up focusing on other things. In this instance, it was art.
“When my kids were little, I started painting at home,” Letty explains. “And when they went to school, I started volunteer-teaching art.”
After instructing students on the intricacies of art for nearly two decades, Letty decided it was time to paint for herself, settling into an expansive, inviting studio space on Downtown Lodi’s Oak Street. Letty knew it could double as both a studio and the boutique she had always dreamed of.
“I just celebrated my third year of being here, and I finally feel like it’s happening!” she exclaims.
Upon entering the space, you’ll find the lovely boutique, which is stocked with handmade jewelry, Letty’s original art, and hand painted personalized items.
“When I started, I asked myself what kind of shop I wanted this place to be, so I made it a home and gift shop,” Letty says. “I had my paintings, which go with the home, and jewelry, which is a gift.”
Since opening, Letty has expanded her inventory – there is painted furniture, bath and body products, and candles, too. Letty makes quite a few of the beaded earrings and necklaces herself, as well as scarves, and a number of gift items. In fact, walk into Nava and Co on any given day, and you’ll likely find her creating something in her working studio, which makes up the other half of the location. But the studio isn’t the only place she gets to unleash her artistic side.
“I started live-painting for weddings,” says Letty. “I go to the reception and paint the bride and groom while it’s going on.” Letty also takes commissions for other paintings, and she started doing jewelry commissions, too. “People can bring in a certain outfit and I’ll custom make jewelry to go with it.”
Interested in creating some art or jewelry of your own? Then keep an eye on Nava and Co’s Facebook page, where Letty announces her classes. You can also schedule a class of your own – it’s perfect for birthday parties and wedding showers!
“This is my happy place,” Letty says, beaming. It might just be yours, too.
Nava and Co.
6 W. Oak St., Lodi