Quilt Shop Navigator · Quilt Shops · Travel

The Cross Country Quilt Shop Quest — Maryland Shops, Part 4: Sew n Vac in Ellicott City MD

Sew n Vac Storefront

Some quilt shops are born because a quilter can’t find the fabric she needs and/or wants to share her love of quilting with other quilters. Some shops start as something else and find their niche with quilting. And still other shops add quilting as a sideline because it’s a way that they can better serve their customers.

Janice at Sew n Vac

Janice, the owner of Sew n Vac, will be the first to tell you that she’s not a quilter. But she understands quilters. And she knows what they need and how to help them.

What Janice knows best is sewing machines. She’s been in the sewing machine business since 1979 and has owned Sew n Vac since 1989. They carry a full line of Babylock machines – sewing machines, quilting machines, sergers, and both home and professional embroidery machines, with all the accessories, patterns, and notions you need to get the most out of them. They can even provide you with Horn or Koala cabinets to put it all in!

(They carry vacuum cleaners, too, so you can corral all of the thread snibbles that result from your enhanced creative productivity.)

And, of course, to get the most out of their wonderful Babylock machines, quilters need fabric. So, Sew n Vac has lined the walls of their classroom with fabric.

Fabric Room at Sew n Vac

Lots and lots of lovely fabric.

More Fabric at Sew n Vac

A rainbow worthy of studious contemplation.

A Customer Ponders her Fabric Choices at Sew n Vac

And it’s beginning to creep out of the classroom and invade the main showroom. (But, then, fabric has a way of doing that, don’t you think? At least it has managed to take over almost every surface in my sewing room. How about yours?)

Fabric under the counter at Sew n Vac

And you’ll find inspiration at Sew n Vac, too.

Samples Line the Wall at Sew n Vac

I loved this tote.

Darling Bird Tote at Sew n Vac

Just look at the panorama of possibilities at Sew n Vac.

Large Panorama Sew n Vac

Still, the primary feature that distinguishes Sew n Vac is their dedication to customer service. They care about providing the best possible experiences for the people they serve.

In addition to their one-on-one classes for new machine owners, Sew n Vac sponsors a variety of lecture/demonstrations and hands-on classes for every interested sewer and quilter. During July, they’re sponsoring a three day Deck the Halls class to give you a jumpstart on Christmas.

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas at Sew n Vac

Twice a year, they present their Sew Fair, a major event featuring noted educators from all of the many areas of sewing, quilting, and embroidery. The three-day seminar is filled with demonstrations of the latest techniques and gadgets in the sewing world and ‘sit and sew’ classes where avid sewing enthusiasts can try them out for themselves. This fall’s Sew Fair will feature Nancy Zieman, of Sewing with Nancy fame.

Sew Fair with Nancy Ziemann at Sew n Vac

When I asked Janice if she could tell me any special stories about her customers or her shop, she simply said, “All of my customers are special.”

What to know about Sew n Vac and Ellicott City

Website: www.sewfair.com

What to see in Ellicott City: Sew n Vac is located about 2 miles north of Historic Ellicott City proper, with its  collection of restaurants, museums, and quaint shops. There you can browse through antique shops, explore the oldest railroad station in the US, or stroll the streets.

Where to eat lunch:  Janice recommends Kelsey’s Irish Pub (8480 Baltimore National Pike) just down the way for sandwiches and other traditional pub fare. 

One thought on “The Cross Country Quilt Shop Quest — Maryland Shops, Part 4: Sew n Vac in Ellicott City MD

  1. When you purchase a machine from Janice, you become a member of the Ellicott City Sew Vac. They are there for you with whatever problems you are having or to answer any question that you have. I was told that no question is a “stupid question”, we are here to help!

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