Verb For Keeping Warm & A New Project

I recently took a trip over to Berkeley on a lovely Sunday to talk to some folks about a new project (more on that below). After our meeting, I stopped by A Verb For Keeping Warm in Oakland.

They have lots of really beautiful yarn here. I do not desire a yarn stash, but, even so, I have yarn for at least 3 or 4 specific projects waiting for me at home, so I wasn’t looking to buy. Just fondling the goods.

They also have yarn they dye themselves with natural dyes that is super yummy. I had seen this before at stitches.

This location is relatively new for them. When they moved here they added fabric to their offerings! And they have some super cute stuff, even if it’s a fairly small collection.

Now about my new project! I had a couple contact me about making a queen-sized quilt for them to use as part of the commitment ceremony they are planning for next July. Their story really touched me and when I met them they seemed like such sweet people that I agreed to do this project for them. And I only agreed because it’s a year off, and we are going to try to get started fairly soon. Otherwise I don’t think I would have had time to do this with the new job and all.

Lots of the details are yet to be worked out, but they do know that they are going to get fabric contributions from all of their friends and family to include in the quilt. They seem super organized, so I think it will be a fun experience. And I think it will be a good way to keep me sewing! I’ll keep you posted on the project as it progresses!

Vicky’s, Kapa’a, Kauai, Hawaii

Interestingly, during my pre-trip research I did not find Vicky’s, but ran across it by chance as we were meandering down the main (only) drag in Kapa’a. Not sure how I missed it, as it’s on Yelp and TripAdvisor as well (again, did not find a web site).

This shop had a variety of other fabrics besides the standard quilting weight cottons – jersey, silks, etc. They also had a long-arm quilter set up in the back.

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Hawaiian prints, of course!
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Knit fabrics
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Hawaiian-themes alphabet quilt
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Reproduction bark cloth
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Flannel (can’t believe anyone buys this, but I guess a lot of people don’t have heat, so it might be good for jammies in the cold season!)
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

I don’t think they wasted an inch of space in this shop!
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Notions – very handy selection (especially without anything like JoAnn’s on the island — though the Walmart actually had a fabric/craft section)
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

Japanese fabrics
Vicky's fabric store, Kapa'a, Kauai

And at this point my camera battery died. But that covers a large part of the shop. This place was really chock full. I have a feeling you might do better in here if you told the nice ladies what you were looking for so they could help you find it! I didn’t end up buying anything here.

I also wanted to report that there IS a shop that sells yarn on the island. It’s called Hanalei Strings – they sell ukeleles as well! I was all set to buy some yarn hand-dyed on Kauai, but I couldn’t find a color I liked in a yarn base I liked (except for the $62 cashmere), so I passed. But I did get the web site to pass along to you if you’re interested, and it looks like they have more in stock online than they had in their shop when I was there, because I see some lovely stuff. Sorry – no photos of this tiny little shop!

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii

One of my important Kauai vacation preparation activities was looking up what local yarn and fabric stores I might be able to hit up on the trip, and I was super excited to be able to visit Kapaia Stitchery in Lihue!

They do not have a web site, but you can see reviews on Yelp, as well as on TripAdvisor (more reviews on TripAdvisor than Yelp, actually).

This shop is a quilter’s dream. They have tons and tons of blender kinds of prints for serious quilter types, as well as endless choices of batiks. As expected they carry a wide range of reproduction bark cloths, Hawaiian print fabrics, and Japanese fabrics as well.

They also have an interesting collection of premade items in Hawaiian fabrics and kimonos as well. They have a fair collection of Hawaiian applique kits with the pieces already cut out, and embroidery kits and canvases.

I’ll just let you browse the photos, with minimal commentary from me, and then show you what I bought at the end!

Click on any image to go over to Flickr where you can zoom in on much larger versions of these photos.

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Laminated bark cloth!
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Huge rolls of super fluffy batting!
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kimonos!
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

New to me – striped batiks! Had a hard time not drooling all over these, and batiks are not usually my thing.
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Loads of precuts
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Some handmade goodies
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Embroidery kits
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

I love this Hawaiian applique quilt and was even considering trying this technique just so I could make this project. Unfortunately, when I asked about the pattern I was told that this was a ready-made quilt that they sell, not one made from a pattern. Too bad – the turtles are adorable!
Kapaia Stitchery, Lihue, Kauai

And last, but not least, my purchase. One yard of each of these two fabrics.
Fabric from Kapaia Stitchery

The print at the bottom with the lucky cats on it is from the Japanese company Cosmo Textiles. It’s a slightly heavier fabric with some texture in those hatch marks. I tried to find it on the web, but didn’t see it anywhere, and the company’s web site is in Japanese. The selvage says nothing other than the company name and the URL.

The other print is from Hawaiiprint, Inc. The selvage says “PO#73237” if anyone wants to try to find it, but I couldn’t find this one either on the web. This company doesn’t even have a web site as far as I can tell.

I just adore both of these, but I encourage you to click over to Flickr to look at the Hawaiian print larger. The hula dancer and the volcano, the fish, coconuts, pineapples, tiki, sushi, lanterns, crabs,…it’s almost too much! My husband and I both spotted this in a quilt in the front window and then he managed to find it on the shelf. I was super excited.

And who can pass up a great lucky cat print? Not me!!

Hart’s Fabric, Santa Cruz, CA

I finally made it to Hart’s Fabric in Santa Cruz on Monday with my awesome coworkers from the Bobbin’s Nest, Maria and Dolin. This trip was crazy fun and guess what — I’ve prepared a shop tour just for all of you. Let’s go!

I took a TON of pictures. Way too many to include in this post, so if you want to see more, the entire set is on Flickr.

**Please note that I didn’t do a thorough inventory of the store, so if I say I didn’t see something, it doesn’t mean they definitely didn’t have it, I just didn’t see it.

Web site: Hart’s Fabric

Location: 1620 Seabright Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA

The store is hard to miss, unlike some other fabric stores I’ve been to.

Storefront

The store has two main sections. On the left side are all the patterns, quilting cottons, garment fabrics, eco fabrics, batting, sales section, basic notions, and interfacing.

The other side of the store

On the right side are all the decorator fabrics, outdoor fabrics, laminated cottons, buttons, ribbons, trims, pillow forms, and foam.

The Home Decor side of Hart's

Basic Fabrics: It’s hard to know where to start here, but I’ll consider basic fabrics to be the quilting cottons. They had a HUGE color wall with all kinds of great novelty prints mixed in.

Massive Color Wall

You can see that the top shelf has a wide selection of solids. This photo doesn’t even show you the fabrics with the black or white backgrounds that were down at the far end. There was another section with just stripes and plaids, and a big display of fat quarters.

They carry only a few batiks and Asian fabrics, but it seemed like they had just about everything else!

Designer Fabrics: A strong selection of these, including Amy Butler’s Love, Heather Ross’s Far Far Away, Momo’s Freebird, Lizzy House’s Castle Peeps, Anna Maria Horner’s Little Folks, and tons of Alexander Henry. Too much to even take in really. They also had a lot of what I would classify as the really fancy and harder to find designer stuff. Like…

Heather Ross’s double gauze,
Heather Ross Double Gauze

Anna Maria Horner voile,
Anna Maria Horner Voile

Liberty,
More Liberty of London

Echino,
Echino!

Kokka,
All Kokka - Yum!

and Nani Iro double gauze.
Nani Iro Double Gauze

Other Types of Fabrics: Really, I think I need about 20 new categories for this shop tour, but it’s just too overwhelming! Please check out the entire Flickr set and the Hart’s web site for all the details. I definitely saw laminated cottons,

Laminated Cottons

flannels,
All these are flannels!
(yes, all of this is flannel!)

and outdoor fabrics, including some really nice vinyl.
Outdoor Fabrics (Vinyl!)

They also had felt in sheets and on bolts by the yard.

Garment Fabrics: Finally somewhere to buy garment fabrics! I now have on my list Britex in SF, Stone Mountain and Daughter in Berkeley, and Hart’s in Santa Cruz. None close, or close to each other for that matter, but doable when necessary.

A woman working there told us they had over 110 different solid color knits. They also had a decent selection of patterned knits.

Patterned Knits!

How about this display of silks?
Silks

They also had courduroy, linens, linen blends, and fleece. There web site says they have twill, wool, lace, linings, denim, ticking, hemp, etc. It’s impossible to see everything in one visit!

Sales Section: I didn’t get a photo of the sales section. It was fairly small and the discounts were not steep (a lot at 20%).

Classroom: I did not see a classroom or anything about classes, but hasn’t Heather Ross taught her Mendocino Sundress class here? I’m not sure where she did that….

Batting and Notions: I’d say this place is second only to Fabrics R US with regard to trim selection.

This is just the section of ribbons.

Ribbons

They also had a section of decorator trims, tons of buttons, and a wall of notions. They were lighter on the quilting notions (not a huge ruler selection, for example), but had TONS of garment sewing notions, including bits for making undergarments, etc. They also had drapery and curtain hardware, including giant grommets.

They had a decent selection of batting and interfacing, as well as tons of pillow forms and even foam in big rolls (I assume they sell it by the yard).

Pillow Forms and Foam

Oh, and zippers by the yard! So awesome!

Machines: This shop does not sell machines.

Patterns and Books: I admit I didn’t look super closely here, but they did carry Amy Butler, Anna Maria Horner, ModKids, Favorite Things, Oliver + S, and Colette patterns for sure. They also have McCall’s and Burda patterns — the same giant ugly pattern drawers they have at JoAnn’s! I’ve never seen that anywhere but JoAnn’s (or Wal-mart) before.

There was also this wall of books that I never got around to perusing:

Books

So, in conclusion, we spent two hours in this store (oh yes we did!) and I still feel like I didn’t see everything, even on the side with all the quilting cottons and garment fabrics. We basically just walked through the decorator side since we came in the back door on that side. Still tons to explore over there!

They do sell online, but I encourage you to make the pilgrimage if you live in the area. You won’t be sorry!

Japanese Craft Books, Anyone?

Okay, so I went to San Francisco to the periodontist today, thinking I was going to get my stitches out. Only to learn that they are resorbing stitches, so they’ll just continue to annoy me until they dissolve or fall out on their own. Lovely.

On the way there I shot this photo just for you guys. Remember this photo of the steep hill into nothingness but fog? Well, here’s what it looks like on a clear day.

Webster & Broadway on a clear day

Gorgeous!

And to help make up for the fact that the stitches aren’t coming out, I stopped to check out Kinokuniya Japanese bookstore in Japantown, which was right on my way out of town. I just discovered this place existed and decided it was a perfect time to check it out, after driving over an hour to the city for a 10-minute check up.

Sewing & Knitting section at Kinokuniya

Can you say sewing and knitting books? The other crafts were on the other side of this shelf. They had a wide selection of books in English, as well as the Japanese books I was expecting.

Sewing books at Kinokuniya

A few covers for you. Gorgeous. Unfortunately, I was hoping to find something in Japanese that was sewing but not kids clothes or women’s clothes. No dice today. I didn’t buy a thing! But I have also discovered that there is another of these stores in San Jose, so I’ll be checking that out sometime. Can’t wait!

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