It’s very hard not to love California with its great weather, beautiful coastline and abundance of really excellent craft shops. I certainly found a few good places when I visited last year. So what better way to guide a road trip south of San Francisco than trying to combine as much sea and fabric as possible?
With a rather ridiculous rental car in tow, which sounded about as silly as it looked and didn’t really encourage responsible acceleration, the first stop on the tour was Golden State Quilting in Campbell.
Golden State Quilting describes itself as your ‘full-service quilting store’, where you can come through the door, trip over the long-arm machine right inside the door, and fall into shelves and shelves of lovely fabrics and notions. It’s a shop with a good sense of humour too – there are some great warning signs throughout the store but my favourite was the ‘caution: entering quilt zone – highly contagious.’
By American standards it’s not a huge store (by European standards it is the size of a warehouse) but it gives the feeling of just being immersed in a wonderful universe of colour. There’s an incredible range of Kaffe Fassett fabrics just by the door that would fascinate me all day and a good long wall’s worth of batiks on the other side of the store.
The shop has a really interesting collection of fabrics with metallic hints in them. As you can probably guess from my love of goldwork embroidery, I am a big fan of adding metallics to anything and everything, and I find that metallics also work really well with super rich batiks too, particularly in combination with blacks. I’ve never found it that easy to find fabrics of this type though, so if anyone has any designers or collections they’d like to recommend, I’d be most grateful!
I love how every available bit of wall space is covered in beautiful quilts and they have attached draped fabrics on the shelves to better show off some of the prints. It’s a lovely, cosy store with a great collection of quilting tools and sewing notions as well. There’s quite a lot of good, different templates and I like all the quilting patterns that are dispersed throughout the shop.
This is definitely a colour lovers shop, as evidenced by their really excellent collection of Kaffe Fasset fabrics and certainly in the batiks there’s an emphasis on the jewel tones and loud and proud colour palette. There’s a good selection of solids and other patterned and novelty fabrics with quilting squares and rulers in every size imaginable. It’s a shame they don’t have a wider range of Omnigrid tools as these are my favourite things to use for being so easy to use, and I guess it’s a bit ridiculous of me in America to expect to see anything in centimetres.
If you’re on the usual tourist trail or visiting San Francisco, it’s a little difficult to get to Golden State Quilting except by car, as well as many of the other excellent shops in the region. There’s not a huge amount of quilting shops in SF itself, though Berkeley has some nice fabric shops which I’ll be blogging about soon and is just under an hour on public transport.
Golden State Quilting is a cute, compact store with oodles of wonderful fabrics for anyone looking to add a bit of sparkle and glitz to their projects and some great service. Definitely one to visit if you are in the area.