On today’s episode of the Craft Industry Alliance podcast we’re talking about owning a quilt shop with my guest, Heather Givans. We recorded this episode in Savannah, Georgia, at Quilt Con 2017. The show was so inspiring and I was excited to have the opportunity to sit down with an equally inspiring guest to talk more about this industry.

Heather is a creative force; fabric store owner, fabric designer, quilt designer, national instructor, artist, and art educator. Heather creates community wherever she goes. Her shop, Crimson Tate, in Indianapolis, was born out of an obsession with creating non-traditional quilts from contemporary, modern and repurposed vintage fabrics.

Photo of Crimson Tate via the Indianapolis Cultural Trail

Heather designs fabric for Windham Fabrics, works on new pattern designs, giggles contagiously, and teaches sewing with her energetic friends and staff among the hustle and bustle of downtown.

In this interview we talk about how Heather came to own a brick-and-mortar fabric shop. Her path wasn’t straight and narrow. She started out as a high school art teacher, then began selling sewn items at craft fairs, and finally opened a studio space that quickly morphed into a quilt shop. Heather explains her unique approach toward running a shop (she see’s it as an art studio) and how she builds a welcoming and fun community.

Heather’s latest fabric collection with Windham, “Literary.”

We talk about adding an online component to a physical store and some of the challenges and rewards which come with that. Heather also shares how her experience owning a shop has informed her fabric designs. You’ll also hear how she originally connected with Windham fabrics.

Sewing 101 graduates show off their projects after class at Crimson Tate.

And, of course, I ask Heather to recommend thing she’s enjoying right now. Heather recommends:

  • Hunting for agates along the shore of Lake Superior
  • The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner (affiliate link)
  • 11″ x 17″ paper and the copy machine at Kinkos

You can connect with Heather on the Crimson Tate site or on Instagram (and you’ll be glad you did – she’s incredibly friendly!).


This episode is sponsored by Plum Deluxe. Love trying new teas? Want to make every day feel special? Treat yourself to a Plum Deluxe tea of the month subscription. For only $10/month, you’ll receive a hand blended, all-organic, loose leaf tea thoughtfully chosen for the season. Tea club members also enjoy special benefits like free shipping and access to a supportive community. Tea also makes a fantastic gift. Visit plumdeluxe.com/tea to join now.


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