Nov 23, 2008

Ada's Balls, Hand Painted

By Jeff Malet/Staff Photographer

Ada Jarvis paints balls. Not just any type of ball. She paints Christmas ornaments, which she jokingly calls Ada's Balls. Her trademark is taking photos of local landmarks and churches in Redlands and Loma Linda and artistically applying her strokes to the different sized objects.

“It's really a hobby that's gotten out of control,” said Jarvis as she paints from a tiny crowded room that looked like it was once used for laundry. “I don't need the money. I just enjoy doing it.”

Jarvis started painting ornaments in 1999 when her hometown of Revel Stoke, British Columbia, Canada, celebrated their centennial celebration. “I decided to do unique balls of local places for souvenir items,” said Jarvis.“No one else had done this.”

A resident of Loma Linda for about 35 years, Jarvis has been making them for nine years. She sells them at local stores in Redlands. She also makes special orders of the Mission Inn for the Mission Inn Museum Store in Riverside. She makes anywhere from 200-250 a year, all painted by hand.

Her work of Redlands landmarks is only sold at Redlands gift store Celebrate Redlands. Another store, Treasures in Redlands, sells them but of themes such as “Babies First Christmas.”

Her most popular are of First Congregational Church, A.K.Smiley Library, University of Redlands and Mission Asistencia.

Sharla Wright, Mission Inn Museum Store director of museum products says she has been selling Ada's work for 4 years. “Her work she does is outstanding. I'm always intrigued by what she does every year,” said Wright. “Right now we have them on a tree in our window on display.”

Over the past nine years of making her creations she has only kept a few broken ones for herself to put on her tree .”It's a one of a kind gift.” Said Jarvis, ”I really enjoy seeing peoples faces light up.”

Celebrate Redlands – 19 E. Citrus Ave. #102, 909-335-0356
Large: $26
Small: $17

Treasures – 411 E. State Street, Redlands, 909-792-2700
Large: $22.50
Small: $14.00

Mission Inn Museum Store – 3696 Main Street, Riverside, 951-788-9556
Large: $40:00
Medium: $30:00
Teardrop: $40:00
Extra Small: $3:50-$4:00