Featured Stockist: Really Maria

Maria Sammur of Really Maria first learned to quilt in Saudia Arabia and has since won quilting competitions around the world and set up her own quilters group before opening her shop in London in August this year. Maria tells us in her own words about her business, her passion for quilting and much more in this exclusive interview.

Tell us about the history of Really Maria and the team


It’s a family run business and our customers are a part of it.  My mother has owned the property since the seventies when she used to run the shop selling children's nursery items with my late father.  She retired and then leased the property until this May, when we began Really Maria.  We wanted to keep the shop in the family, so now mum can be hands on involved in a cherished investment.  My husband is our financial advisor and my son comes and helps out in the shop whilst showing off his new found skills in quilting.

I'd learnt to quilt when living in Saudi Arabia.  I joined the Bedouin Piecemakers Quilting Group whilst learning from American ex-pats and other wonderful ladies from all over the world.  I then became the vice-chair and eventually taught and even formed my own group called the Qrazy Quilters.  The group still meet regularly to this day.   I also travelled the world and competed and won competitions for my quilts including visitor’s choice at Aramco in Saudi Arabia Dammam.  The opportunity then came to open the shop in London, it made sense, I'd had so much encouragement from friends and family and we finally opened on the 27th of August this year.  So I guess you could say I am the ‘qrazy quilter’ and Owner/Manager of Really Maria.
 

What do you offer that makes you stand out from other retailers?


I am very happy to announce we are now running quilting classes from our shop, an opportunity to be able to teach and share in crafts but also to learn and be inspired by our customers.  What makes Really Maria really stand out here is to really listen to our customers and allow ourselves to be inspired by their shared passion of craft. We hope to grow with our customers and share our love for bold, vibrant and imaginative crafting.

We choose quality, affordable products according to seasons and share a wealth of travel with our community.


 

What are you passionate about?


I am passionate about all things craft!  I am very fortunate to be in a position where I can attend wholesale events, competitions and classes. I am able to meet experienced quilters and tutors from around the country and then share that joy and excitement with my friends and community. 

How do you choose what you stock?


Well if it doesn't have the 'wow' factor, then it's not in!  I love colourful, vibrant, bold and animal prints.  I like to make people walk into the shop and go “WOW”!

I also like to make sure that my customers have everything they need to be able to continue their craft, ensuring we have the right kinds of tools and materials in stock to do so.


What do you love about quilting?


It has everything!  Tactile beautiful fabrics, colour, choice of designs, the excitement when you see a new pattern, the endless possibilities of what you can make, sharing knowledge and love of the craft with friends, the social aspect of sewing together and learning new techniques, entering competitions and making beautiful handmade gifts for loved ones.

What project are you working on at the minute?


I've got about 20 unfinished projects on the go (pretty normal for most quilters) and many more future projects planned.  I’m always open to new ideas and inspiration, constantly looking to expand what I can produce and teach.

Are there any future plans you wish to share with us?


I would love to start selling online as well as working more closely with the local community.  I'd also like to produce my own patterns and kits.  I would love to continue growing with you all, at Really Maria.

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