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Local Creator Spotlight!
Our community of artisans and crafts(wo)men in the Central Coast is rich with home and gift makers to exquisite small businesses specializing in garment and leather craftsmanship to companies creating handmade product internationally distributed-- wet suits, garments, outdoors-adventure, and medical gear. Grant House Sewing Center is proud to assist all customers at every level of their creative and entrepreneurial journey!
Local Creator Spotlight: idunno creations!

Denise stopped by our store earlier this year and we got so excited when she told us about idunno creations! Denise makes these fun colorful hand towels in all types of fabrics and themes. Meant to bring light and life into your kitchen or bathroom, her work is playful and utilitarian! When we asked about her business name, she shared the story behind its funny name:

"My middle son Aaron loved to surf and always had the dream to open a surfboard shop. He wanted to call it idunno boards. He wanted people to see his boards and ask 'what kind of board is that?' and the response inevitably would be 'idunno.' Aaron was funny and creative like that. He could make anyone smile. Sadly, in 2009, Aaron passed away from complications with diabetes. He was 25."

Denise uses Aaron's idunno name for her small business as a way to keep his dream and a piece of Aaron's humor and whit alive. So, when someone asks you where you got that fun towel, you can shrug and say "idunno."

Thanks Denise for sharing your story, creative sewing treasures, and bringing Aaron's light into our day!

Check out her super profesh Amazon Shopping page!
idunno creations can be found at open air markets or online via their awesome Amazon Handmade Shop.

Click here to visit her amazon shopping page. 
Local Creator Spotlight: Elizabeth!
Elizabeth's collage work brings emotion and love to the animals she captures.

"I saw a picture of a panda bear in a tree and had to recreate it with fabric"

And what a vision she made! Her creative piecing of fabrics draws your eyes in and holds your attention. Are those feathers in the wood and flowers in the trees? It feels like an intricate puzzle or painting. Or, as Elizabeth simply put it: "Lots of detail. Lots of fun."

Thanks for sharing your creative process and finished pieces with us! Can't wait to have you in the store to see what you're working on next!

Follow her on Instagram and get inspired!
Practicing a full range of topics and moods, Elizabeth's work certainly carries a punch! It's so fun to follow her creative journey on Instagram - click the link below and check her out!

Click here to visit her instagram page!
Local Creator Spotlight: Southgate Quilt House!

We've been working with Southgate Quilt House for a long time, and we absolutely love her work! Anyone who's dared to patchwork and stitch their own quilts quickly learns the patience, attention to detail, and control it takes to handle a large quilt and master these designs.

Kris grew up "no stranger to sewing." She watched her mom sew all their clothes growing up. Her own sewing took off when she got her first dollhouse. "I loved that house and would make clothes, curtains, name it. I was always decorating that house." Later in life, after nursing school and some soul searching, she invested in a longarm and a 10-needle embroidery machine.

"It felt right and was the answer to my prayers."

Custom Orders!
At Southgate Quilt House, anything is possible. Looking to create a special quilt for a loved one? Or perhaps a custom wool batting or embroidery addition?

Reach out for a consultation!
Local Creator Spotlight: Jim Jones' Quilt!

Jim Jones stopped by the shop the other week to show us one of his latest completed quilts and we were so happy he did! Taking the time to incorporate embroidery can be a lot of work but the results are always so rewarding. Jim explained that he chose his two favorite heart embroidery designs for this quilt and then customized the colors for each part of the design!

Custom Labels!
We love that Jim added a label to customize his blanket! The hand stitching gives it a little extra love and makes it even more special.

Thanks for sharing your quilt with us Jim!
Local Creator Spotlight: Polly!
We are beyond obsessed with Polly's quilts! Her portrait series has such a playful use of light and shading. Every time she comes into the store we all get excited to see what she has brewing at home.

A lifetime sewist, Polly "started sewing as a girl scout at age 10" but didn't dive into the world of quilting until her 20's. She continued to quilt while raising her three sons, "and then dove in again with a passion during the pandemic."

"I joined the Coastal Quilter's Guild then and entered quilts in a show for the first time in our 2022 show. I love all kinds of quilting, but especially making collage and portrait quilts!"

Check her out at the International Quilts and Fiber Arts Festival!
Her piece above is titled, "In His Element" and is a portrait of her father "pursuing his passions of bird watching and digital photography, happy to be outdoors and holding his camera with his biggest lens."

We love the background quilting textures and how real the subject appears!

You can see this piece in person at the International Quilts and Fiber Arts Festival 2023 in Everett, Washington this October 6th - 8th.

Click here to Follow her Instagram to see more of her work and get inspired!
Local Creator Spotlight: Angelica!

Everyone is completely smitten when they see this absolutely adorable mini fiesta dress made by Angelica! It's hanging in the front of the store - come check it out!

Custom Designed & Fitted Dresses!
Every year Angelica makes custom fiesta dresses for all ages and sizes. She also can make mini doll dresses to match their owners! (ehhemmm I guess this is a doll's dress though I think we all would love to imagine a sweet baby dressed in it!)

Come check out Angelica's mini doll dress here at the store and ask after her garment making services! Professionally trained in garment design and construction, there isn't a project she can't tackle!

Bea Furnishings

Bea Furnishings is an avalanche of creativity and perfectionism. Masterfully applied across a wide range - their work has decorated architectural digest pages (above^), boutique hotels, and maybe even your own closet!

Joanna Beatrice founded Bea Furnishings here in Santa Barbara in 2017 after studying Interior Design at San Francisco State University and absorbing the intricacies of upholstery in North Carolina, New York City, and Denver, Colorado.

Picture Notes from top to bottom: AD, Check out their collaboration with Carhartt at the Carhartt tasting room in Santa Ynez Valley!, Betsy by Bea takes the scraps from Bea Furnishings and turns them into the coolest accessories!, 

Check out their shop today!
Bea Furnishings shares their creative vision with the Sisters Plant Shop at 3040 State Street. Stop by to get inspired and Say Hi!
Betsy by Bea is an awesome extension of accessories made from the repurposed scraps of Bea Furnishing's work - the fanny packs are not only super cool but also actually practical in size and function!
While Bea Furnishings primarily partners with local interior designers on residential and commercial projects, they'd love to hear from you about any requests! Swing by their website and submit a Pricing Inquiry or make an appointment today!

Click here to visit their website!
Click here to visit their Instagram!
Sylvia's Pride Stoles!

You can't help but love Sylvia's rainbow pride-month stoles! She came by the store to purchase these playful rainbow prints, explaining that she made these colorful stoles to hand out at church. Our thoughts: Hellert! Rainbows and pride are for every month of the year! Let's all get in on this! Thank you Sylvia for sharing this fun project and idea with us! 

Local Creator Spotlight: Joey White

You can feel the good vibes and positivity that Joey's work inspires!
There's nothing he won't tackle: expertly crafted interior build-outs, quilted garments and hats, hyper intricate cut-paper designs, silver glass-inlaid jewelry, bike and car gear attachments, joyous tattoo designs, the list continues!

"I grew up in northern Michigan scavenging thrift shops, bags of hand-me-downs, and I would stop at every garage sale I could find."

Joey started out restoring furniture or engineering solutions for common problems, "Modifying and improving tools or belongings to be more efficient is extremely satisfying to me. When I discovered my mother's sewing machine, I adopted it as my own and took it everywhere with me. It's such a versatile tool with endless potential and I want to see how far I can take it."

Follow him on Instagram!
We're loving all the creativity that Joey shares with the world! Purchase from his shop, request custom projects, or just get inspired by following his account on Instagram!


Local Creator Spotlight: Kris' Backhoe Quilt!

Hand Pieced to Perfection!
We connected with Kris as she was purchasing the finishing backing and binding for her quilt and were instantly blown away by the epic quilt-top she showed us.

"I have a little grandboy who loves backhoes, and has for most of his young life. He is now 4. So his next quilt had to be a backhoe."

After finding a Kohatu pattern online, a foundation piecing pattern that required wayyy too much paper piecing, Kris decided to go a bit rogue. She enlarged the backhoe quilt square by about 300% so she only had to make one block. Genius!!

"The original was just 12 inches square" Kris explained, "My fabric all came from Grant House, and the paper-piecing expertise all from YouTube."

Describing her process, she worked on "thirteen sections to the pattern and it took me at least a day to finish each one."

Her machine quilting patterns mostly came from WALK by Jacquie Gering. "I especially loved 'echoing in' used on the backhoe, and 'twigs' used in the ground below the backhoe. There are loads of cloud patterns online." You can really tell how much love and attention went into every detail of this quilt!

But at the end of the day, we needed to know, what did Ryan think?! "Ryan was happy with his quilt!"

Thank you so much for sharing your project with us Kris!! Such an inspiration!

Local Creator Spotlight: Leigh Sparks

Leigh's work ranges from landscape paintings to perfectly upholstered covers and cushions or quilted artwork.

"I've always sewn and in college I made quilts to put me through UCSB. After that I opened a quilt shop, It's Comforting, and made custom quilts" How awesome!

Her design studio, The Princess and the Pea, was founded after she attended interior design school. Her design business focuses on the design and construction of custom bedding, drapes, slipcovers, and interiors for over 25 years.

"As a fifth-generation local rancher, I strive to preserve the legacy of our coastline and vistas. My sewing work room studio where I keep all my special sewing machines and supplies is located in our historical town hall built in 1910!"

Go by and say hi!
Leigh's passion for art and design led her to opening an art gallery, Linden Studio, located at 963 Linden Avenue in Carpinteria. Follow her on Facebook or Instagram to get updates on her fine artwork & submit requests for custom cushion, drapery, or upholstery work!

Follow her on instagram
Visit her website

BEHIND THE SCENES: Summer Solstice 2023

Every year the buildup and excitement for Summer Solstice is felt with especial excitement here at Grant House Sewing Center. For years and years and years Grant House, the owner of our fine sewing center, has been supporting and servicing the sewing division at the Summer Solstice. We're passionate about the unbridled creativity and resourcefulness of the Summer Solstice team! Here are some exciting updates about the parade and how you can get involved!

Claudia, (1st photo), has been with the program since 1982 when she designed the first Summer Solstice shirt. Her children and grandchildren have all partaken in the parade. This year she designed a set of boat-inspired hats inspired by her great grandfather's arrival to the United States by boat from Ecuador. A set of 11 male and female costumes are made from found materials such as unfinished pillowcases and recycled plastic containers.

The lively sewing workshop is complete with two large workstations and numerous Berninas and sergers.

You had me at giant inflatable balloon creature
Perhaps the most memorable and elaborate distinctions of Summer Solstice are the MASSIVE hand-made inflatable balloon creatures that are named and introduced each year. Pali, the man behind the balloon creature magic, is seen here working on this year's balloon: a 25ft tall mushroom. Pali took us on a tour of his workshop where he is in the process of cutting and sewing his pattern for the balloon. They use industrial machines at this part of the workshop to hand sew the thick nylon.

Don't forg-ENT about the ENTS!
We couldn't help but oggle over Mae's first giant puppet. Here she is working on the mask that will adorn her very very tall Ent costume.
Ents are the giant tree people from Lord of the Rings. Volunteers posted a few helpful photos of Ents in Mae's workstation to help her design and build the puppet.

Get in on the action! Sewists are needed every year for Summer Solstice. Sign up to volunteer on their website. There are both paid and unpaid positions. 

Local Creator Spotlight: Catherine Gee

Internationally recognized designer and boutique owner

Ready to Wear with an Emphasis on Silks!
Launched in 2015 as a silk collection, Gee's work became known for her core slip dress style.

By creating a multifaceted capsule wardrobe for the modern woman to feel confident, cool, and sexy in their everyday lives, Gee's line has attracted a-list celebrities including the likes of Halle Berry, Charlize Theron, Naomi Watts, and Mila Kunis.

In 2016, Gee gained industry recognition when she became winner of the WWD and Galeries Lafayette (Paris) Creme de la Creme Emerging Designer competition.

Visit her boutique today!
We are in love with the silhouettes that Gee creates and captures with her simple but elegant designs.

Gee took sewing classes here at Grant House Sewing Center as a teenager and we are so proud of how far she's come over the years!

Visit her instagram @catherinegee , website, and stop by her boutique today!
1114 State Street, Mon-Sat 11am - 6pm

Local Creator Spotlight: Obsidian Print & Stitch

Custom Screen Printing & Embroidery
Obsidian Screen & Print supports local and large events and businesses with their marketing and brand promotion!

There's nothing they won't tackle: Custom golf bags or shoes to gift to friends or family, screen printing for musicians or festivals, custom hats, uniforms, or garments for UCSB or the city- they really do it all!

They have an in-house team of graphic designers and technicians that will work with your brand to develop a design and message that inspires a following.

Check out their Instagram!
Follow their Instagram page to get a behind the scenes look at what they're up to and the large range of projects they work on!

We are so proud to support them with their industrial embroidery machines and can't wait to see what new projects they tackle!

Click here to check out their Instagram!

Local Creator Spotlight: Carmen!

Bespoke Pieces!
We ran into Carmen at the Adult Ed workshops at Santa Barbara City College and fell in love with her accessories collection!

Carmen selects high quality materials such as waterproof canvases, Italian leathers, and water-resistant linings to create the most beautiful custom designs. We're especially crazy for her embroidered work & metal details.

Check out her Instagram!
Follow her Instagram page to learn more about her creative process and see what pieces she has for sale!


Local Creator Spotlight:
Michelle started Vintage Boho Bags out of her garage in 2017

Authentic Upcycled Designer Handbags!
Michelle's story is so inspiring, we had to share it with you all!
Started in 2017, Boho bags truly began when Michelle needed some money and decided to sell a vintage designer bag that she had upcycled herself. When the bag sold quickly online, she realized she was on to something and decided to double down on the idea!
After training with a local saddle-maker and upholstery company to learn how to sew and properly braid leather, she converted her one-car garage into a workshop where she grew her business from scratch!

Check them out!
All the handbags they upcycle are 100% authentic. Her team cleans, repairs, and re-invents each piece by hand.
"We can give new life to your bag with a Boho twist or make it look like new from the factory"
We are so grateful to support Michelle's team and their work in sustainable fashion! Follow them on social media and check out their website today!

Interested in Sewing Leather?
The Cobra Class 4P Heavy Duty Stitcher is one of our favorite sewing machines that we recommend for all our clients who work with leather.
We don't just sell this machine to our leather-working clients: Our in-house sewing expert has toured Leather Machine Co's manufacturing facility to receive firsthand training and knowledge on installing and servicing their line of beautiful machines.
Interested in learning more? Reach out to us by email or give us a call today!
Local Creator Spotlight: Kim!

What an eye for detail!
Loving the pattern she chose! The pleats and waistband are so cool!!
"As part of my New Year’s Resolutions I pledged to take on new things I’ve always wanted to do but have put off. One of those things is sewing, specifically sewing my own garments. My first project I committed to was a tartan skirt with some fabric I purchased.
"Taking Elizabeth Bryant's Hand Sewing class in February, got me started. When her zipper class came around, the timing could not have been better and I was able to finish my skirt in time to wear for St. Patrick’s Day."
Wow!! We're so happy to have been part of your creative journey in some way - but you did all the work and it looks amazing!
Such an inspiration, thanks Kim!
Local Creator Spotlight: Colleen!
Beautifully crafted quilted blankets & thoughtfully handmade gifts!

What an eye for detail!
We were blown away when we came across Colleen's Instagram account and knew immediately that we had to share it with our community here!
It seems like there's no project that's too large or small to capture Colleen's attention! Her keen eye for detail is demonstrated in huge perfectly squared quilts and intricately detailed embroidery garnishing thoughtful gifts for her neighbors, grandchildren, and friends alike.
How adorable is this crown and wand?! Above is her finished Tranquility Quilt Top!

Get Inspired!
We are thrilled to be a resource to Colleen in our Coastal sewing community! Follow her account and get inspired!

Local Creator Spotlight: Catie & her French Pocket!

Hand Quilted to perfection
"This was my first project using paper piecing. It was really fun trying a new technique that uses mainly hand sewing, and I love the way the patterned fabrics from the French General collection work together visually."

Catie used cuts from Moda's French General collection, a selection of which we have here at the store, come check it out!

We love the process!
"After piecing the hexagons together, I quilted the front and back panels on a machine.

I used the PFAFF Performance Icon, which was such a time saver, because I used the automatic needle threading, thread cutting and tie off functions.

I only had to guide the fabric and push a button whenever I needed to thread the needle, anchor a seam or trim threads."

Come check it out!
Interested in checking out this super cool exterior pocket??

Come by the store and get inspired!

I'm inspired to make one of my own now! They seem so useful especially in today's world of large cell phones.

What do you think?!

Free French Pocket Pattern
Interested in making one of your own??

The Victoria & Albert Musuem in London (highly recommend a visit if you haven't been!) put together some free instructions and a short history of the "tie-on" pocket! Click this link to check out the free pattern.
Local Creator Spotlight: Jess Conti Leather
Hand crafted leather goods made Here in Santa Barbara's Funk Zone!

One-of-a-kind pieces!
Exquisitely designed and thoughtfully hand-crafted, each piece by Jess Conti is made with attention to not just the small details, but also the true functionality and authenticity of the materials she works with.
Drawn to the organic texture and variations that come from leather, she enjoys emphasizing the unique qualities of the medium that otherwise may be discarded or overlooked.
"Leather itself is distinct in that it transforms as it ages, becoming more distinguished and beautiful with use."

Hand Dyed Leather!
We're a bit obsessed with the way she's hand-dying her leather. Follow her on Instagram to get an inside look at her process!

Go Say Hi!
Jess Conti, the owner, maker, and creative behind Jess Conti Leather Goods hails from a long line of creative people including artists, musicians, and fine crafters!
She's been sewing and crafting since she was a child and learned many of her earliest sewing skills from her grandmother who was a professional dressmaker.
All her pieces are created solely by her in her Santa Barbara studio!
Visit her retail studio today at
121 Santa Barbara Street, in the heart of the Funk Zone!

Check out her website today!

Local Creator Spotlight: Melisa!

Check out this incredible quilted coat
Hand pieced together and sewn by Melisa
We love the knee-length style and fun, relaxed open design.

Who isn't obsessed with a quilted coat?! We certainly are!
We're crazy about the way she achieved the perfect fit and do we spy pockets and a hood?! So dreamy!
Just look at the way she designed the coat with the contrasting fabric, exposing the printed fabric panels in a specific way so that you see the painted illustrations on the sleeves and back! Beautifully done.
Look at those beautiful Hong Kong Seams!
It's all about the details and we're loving these!
Thank you Melisa!

Local Creator Spotlight: Makayla!
We love this fun Jumpsuit that Makayla made! Using a simple pattern with a fun back cross strap - this is a great piece for spring and summer!

Hello Fun Back Tie! 
We're just loving the wide legs, cute stappy back bow,
And POCKETS! Man, got to love a garment with pockets!

You'll find Makayla here at the store helping out customers and putting a smile on everyone's face.
Come check out the beautiful jumpsuit she made and say hi!

Local Creator Spotlight: Svetlana_Embroidery
We're crazy about Svetlana's embroidery and sewing creations ! From upcycled dresses to custom baby clothes and even stuffed animals! There's nothing she isn't afraid to tackle !

Silk Queen Apron:
Excuse me?! I think we all need one of these!
Not only is the design perfect, but this apron looks so soft and comfy. I think I can skip the crown and just wear this!
We also loved the video of this being boxed on her Instagram! You can just tell that she's all about the details.

We couldn't get enough of these sweet bunnies she made for Easter!
"I love making gifts, personalized items, and adding embroidery to my sewing projects."
The embroidery she says, "adds a one of kind, just for 'me' thing"
We couldn't agree more!
Svetlana's Instagram account inspires you to Dream Big!
She told us that she's always loved to sew, since she was a little girl. And you can tell!
We love her thoughtfully curated account and think you might too!

Follow Svetlana today!

Local Creator Spotlight: Angelica!
You may find Angelica here at the shop adding thoughtful touches, organizing the fabric, helping customers, and making the space glow.

But what you probably didn't know was that she is an incredibly talented seamstress!
Here she tackled this Crisscross Apron pattern probably with her eyes closed (hopefully not.. ouch!)

Are you kidding me? This is reversible and only requires two yards of fabric?! How dreamy!
No Strings, No Ties, and great big POCKETS. Ugh, can't get enough of it.
She chose the Dazzle collection from Jason Yenter and we love how bright and cheerful it is.

Say Hi to Angelica if you stop by the store!
She's here during the week and is more than happy to help you with your fabric selection or talk through a project.
Ella también habla español!

Tired of losing things in your purse?!
We've got the puuurrrfect solution for you!
This staff fabric & project inspo has us droolinggg!
Using this bold strong blue canvas material and a soft fun cotton lining... 

"Sometimes it's fun to just make it up as you go along!"
Taking a turn to the wild side, she constructed this alarmingly cute and cool tote purse without a single pattern!

Is that a special pocket for your sunglasses?
You've got to be kidding me! Why have I never thought of this?!
"I hate it when I can't find something in my purse!"
Us too!

It fits your laptop, has the right strap length (so you can open it without taking the purse off your shoulder, duh), and a zipper on top to keep peeping eyes away?
I mean, this purse has it all!
Thanks for giving us all that extra inspo and some great tips!
Have you just finished a fun project that you'd like to share with our community here? Or maybe it's a cool short cut or tip?
We'd love to hear from you!