Monday, November 19, 2012

The Sarah Elizabeth Shop

I have to tell you that I've been snatching up lots of goodies this fall during my travels and at craft shows. I'm feeling the nesting urge and what better things to add to our home than those made by the hand of someone I've met and visited with. I have many to show you, but thought I would start with this gorgeous block printed lobster hanging.

It was printed by artist Julia Garrison at The Sarah Elizabeth Shop in Rockport, Massachusetts. I visited with Julia at the shop where they have been producing original block printed fabric and other items on an historic Acorn Press in Rockport since 1974. 

The history of the shop and its designs dates back even further to the late 1930s. The shop's namesake, Sarah Elizabeth Holloran was a member of "The Folly Cove Designers," a collective of designers that emerged from a design class taught by non other than Virginia Lee Burton. She is one of my favorite illustrators and storytellers of all time. You may know her from some of my favorite children's books: The Little House and Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel. 

Both of the pieces I bought were designed by the  vivacious apprentice designer Isabel Natti who worked alongside Sarah Elizabeth until Sarah Elizabeth's death in 2009. Isabel continued designing and printing her own work as well as Sarah Elizabeth's until her own death in 2011. Now Julia, a local painter and fabric artist, continues the tradition of offering original designed block printed fabric of her own as well as of the women who inspired her and taught her how to print. 

If you are ever in the area, I encourage you to check out this charming shop. I wanted to buy up everything in sight. In the meantime, you can also check out the Sarah Elizabeth shop on Etsy

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