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Introducing The Pava Mandolin

By Mandolin Cafe
September 27, 2012 - 2:30 pm

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The Pava Mandolin

The Pava Mandolin

Austin, Texas — A new brand of mandolins make their debut this weekend at IBMA in Nashville, Tennessee in the Ellis Mandolin booth. The company has announced the creation of Pava Mandolins, built by Pava Knezevic in the shop of Ellis Mandolins.

With a retail price of $2,500 the goal of the Pava is to be the single finest instrument that a player can get in that price bracket.

Pava Knezevic was born and raised in Croatia. In her teen years she wished to attend an art program at a trade school but instead chose a carpentry school that was close by. After four years of trade school Pava started work as a carpenter and hasn't looked back since.

Pava decided to make a career change after producing fine cabinetry and living in the U.S. for a few years. Gaining employment at Collings Guitars she was introduced to the world of fine instrument building. She began in the finish and sanding department. Collings quickly noticed Pava's skill and promoted her to the mandolin department where she built F-5 models.

In 2003 Pava came to work for Tom Ellis at Precision Pearl, Inc. As an associate of Precision Pearl her duties included all aspects of the inlay process. Pava's talent was best reflected in her hand inlay work.

"Involved from the start, it was Pava's skill that helped resurgence of the Ellis Mandolin brand in 2005. She is responsible for much of the handcrafting that goes into an Ellis Mandolin," said Tom Ellis.

"Early in 2012 I decided it was time Pava applied skills she had collectively gathered through her experiences to create her own mandolin. Using the same techniques that made Ellis Mandolins one of the most sought after mandolins on the market Pava is now producing her own line. We are all very proud of these fine instruments."

The Pava Mandolin:
Top: Adirondack Red Spruce
Back: Red Maple
Finish: Nitrocellulose Lacquer
Binding: white/black/white top and back
Frets: .080" x .037"
Radius: Compound 7.5" - 15"
Nut Width: 1 1/8"
Hardware: Nickel
Inlaid Logo

At the time of this news release availability in the retail market has not yet been announced, nor have there been discussions about the possibility of other related mandolin models from the new line. An update to the Ellis Mandolin web site is coming in the near future with additional information.

Additional information:
Ellis Mandolins


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Reader Comments

September 27, 2012 04:01 PM
Think if I go to Ellis' shop I can play one?!
Jonathan James
September 27, 2012 04:11 PM
Good story and it looks like nice mentoring from Tom. Congrats and look forward to hearing some reviews after folks get their hands on a few.
Jamie MacLaggan
September 28, 2012 07:32 AM
Congratulations, Pava! I can't wait to give one a test drive.

-Jamie MacLaggan, Ellis #25.
September 29, 2012 11:24 AM
Good luck. I'm sure they will be fine mandolins.

Mark R.
Ellis #115, 161, 207
September 29, 2012 12:50 PM
You can always call Tom and ask. Fiddler's Green will have some I'm sure.

Quote from jackmalonis: Think if I go to Ellis' shop I can play one?! End Quote
September 29, 2012 12:53 PM
I was talking to Tom on the phone last month and Pava came in to ask some questions, (Great accent, btw) and he told me about these coming out soon and their background. If I were in the market I would snatch one of these up.
doc holiday
September 29, 2012 06:53 PM
Pava & Tom are such a wonderful team. Last November, I went to Tom's shop to pick up my A Special. Pava was sitting just beside Tom, working on Billy Bright's Gil. The first thing Pava asked, when Tom handed me the mandolin was "How do you like the neck?" Hat's off to Tom for helping Pava on this project. I'm also looking forward to playing one. My doubleflower pot A is a great mandolin & I appreciate the highly skilled and talented work that went into it.
October 01, 2012 02:15 PM
I played the 2 Pava mandolins Tom had at his booth at IBMA and was quite impressed. Nice fit and finish (as you'd expect from anything leaving that environment), strong, clear sound, and excellent playability. The necks were both rather small - my comment to Tom was that they seemed like mandolins made by a woman for women players - but I'm sure you could order one with a slightly beefier, wider neck. All in all, they're VERY nice and a great bargain for a US-made mandolin. Look for my profile on them in an upcoming issue of Mandolin Magazine.

David McCarty
Scott Tichenor
October 03, 2012 12:08 PM
Just visiting with Tom after his return from IBMA. He brought two Pava Mandolins to the show and told me it was OK to share who they went home with. One is headed to Elderly Instruments and the other to Danny Bishop's Violin Shop.
October 04, 2012 12:27 AM
Are they going to make any F-Style?
Scott Tichenor
October 04, 2012 07:54 AM
Quote from jackmalonis: Are they going to make any F-Style? End Quote

Direct quote from the article:

At the time of this news release availability in the retail market has not yet been announced, nor have there been discussions about the possibility of other related mandolin models from the new line. An update to the Ellis Mandolin web site is coming in the near future with additional information.
October 19, 2012 11:51 AM
Elderly has the instrument featured in this article (#2) for sale at $2,500.

I played it at IBMA and it has a really sweet sound -- not quite as bright and punchy as a Collings but a nice sweet tone with really syrupy mids. The strings seemed really well balanced.

Quality wise it definitely seemed up there with the Collings MT and the Northfield A5. In short, the craftsmanship on the Pavas are stellar, it just comes down to what kind of sound you are looking for.
February 20, 2013 01:01 PM
For anyone interested: In Elderly Instrument's latest video demo we take a look at two delightful A style mandolins from luthier Pava Knezevic. The video features one of the first Sunburst finishes from Pava, these mandolins are serial #6 and #8 respectively.

I think they compare quite favorably to the Collings MT and the Northfield A style in this price range. They are incredibly well balanced and the craftsmanship is excellent. I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have!

Look for more mandolin demos in the future!

March 07, 2013 09:04 AM
Looks awesome, I bet there's a nice price tag to go with that though.
doc holiday
March 07, 2013 09:19 PM
SD $2500 & a great bargain for that level of work-woman-ship for that price.
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