• Tue. May 28th, 2024

Elderly Billings couple stay mentally engaged with basket-weaving enterprise


Mar 27, 2024

Jill and Paul Scarpari began making handmade baskets in the early 1990s and eventually turned their hobby into a business. Jill attended her first basket-making class in 1991 and became hooked on the craft. Paul, impressed with the baskets Jill was making, decided to try his hand at basket-making in 1995.

Initially, Paul struggled to make baskets that stood on their own, but eventually he mastered the craft. As the couple accumulated more and more baskets, their family members grew tired of receiving them as gifts, prompting them to start selling their creations. Paul finds making baskets mentally stimulating, as there are different types and styles to create, from small pine needle baskets to large hampers and backpacks.

While Scarpari Baskets can be found in local stores, such as Frae in Shiloh Commons and Three Rivers Gallery in Big Timber, for prices ranging from $20 to $300, the business is also a passion project for the retired couple. They enjoy the challenge of creating new types of baskets and find satisfaction in producing pieces that people enjoy. Retirement has given them the time to focus on their craft, adding an element of fulfillment to their post-career lives.

By editor

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