Katy Elliott

A daily design journal about new england life, home decorating resources, and renovating a 257-year-old house in Marblehead, MA.

Sarah Elizabeth Block Printers: InStyle Magazine

Posted on | June 15, 2012 | 9 Comments

For the July issue of InStyle magazine I was asked, “What’s your favorite hostess gift?” I’m quoted, “So evocative of summer in New England, these block-printed place mats can be given as a set. Or you can frame one to hang on the wall.” I adore Sarah Elizabeth Block Printers! Her studio is one of my favorite local treasures. I have a whole box of placements I picked up on my last visit to Sarah Elizabeth’s studio in Rockport, Massachusetts. I send them to friends as little reminders of New England. The linen lobster placemat is adorable and perfect paired with simple tabletop accessories. My sister and I both had the placemats framed too!

Linen lobster placemat, $18.

Sarah Elizabeth Block Printers in Rockport, Massachusetts thirty year old shop is a living museum honoring the work of Folly Cove artist Sarah Elizabeth. Established in Gloucester in 1938, the Folly Cove Designers were a guild of designer-craftsmen that grew out of a design course taught by Virginia Lee Burton Demetrio. After the designers disbanded in 1969, Sarah Elizabeth continued block printing and in 1974 opened the Sarah Elizabeth Shop.

Isabel Natti started block printing as a weekend job, and now, after thirty years continues to print the linoleum blocks she has designed and carved. The prints include scenes of nature and marine life on the coast of Cape Ann. The prints are available as placemats, runners, cards, and wall hangings. My favorite in addition to the lobster placement is, “Oceanside” a multi-block wall hanging depicting a fish company in Gloucester.

Update: I received a note from Rockport resident, Sarah Kelly, informing me Isabel Natti passed away over the winter. She was a lovely, talented artist and will be missed. Isabel had the foresight to pass on her studio to a young block printer, Julia Garrison. I look forward to visiting the studio this summer to meet Julia!

Above and below a photos from inside the studio back in the summer of 2010. Isabel is shown sitting in front of her 150-year old Acorn Press—a press she inherited from her Aunt Lee Natti. To find out more about Sarah Elizabeth including shop hours and purchasing info visit: sarah-elizabeth-shop.com.

Sarah Elizabeth Block Printers
5 Whistlestop Mall
Rockport, MA
(978) 546-6541

Isabel Natti

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9 Responses to “Sarah Elizabeth Block Printers: InStyle Magazine”

  1. The Neighbor's Kid
    June 15th, 2012 @ 4:08 pm

    Ohhh, you Style-Setter you. That’s my Baby Girl.



  2. erin, reading my tea leaves
    June 15th, 2012 @ 4:12 pm

    Delightful–the feature and the work itself! I love learning about businesses like these ones! If I’m ever in that neck of the woods, I’m stopping by to get a few of my own.


  3. Katy Elliott
    June 15th, 2012 @ 4:15 pm


    I was so happy to have the opportunity to promote such a lovely studio and gorgeous unique work! You must go to her studio–a must see in the delightful town of Rockport!


  4. Susan
    June 16th, 2012 @ 7:12 am

    It was so awesome to see you in there Katy, congrats!! A wonderful choice too ;)


  5. Patsy
    June 18th, 2012 @ 10:11 am

    Thank you!! We saw the exhibit on the Folly Cove Designers at the Cape Ann Museum and are delighted to know we can visit the studio the next time we are in Rockport.


  6. Kristen
    June 18th, 2012 @ 4:59 pm

    You are so awesome!


  7. Sarah
    June 19th, 2012 @ 12:16 am

    Thanks for posting the update, Katy. Love your recommendation of the lobster placemats!


  8. barbara stroud
    June 19th, 2012 @ 2:31 pm

    Wonderful information! We go to Maine each year, so we’ll be sure to check this place out! On another note… thanks for the heads up a few years ago about the Owls Head General Store… we ate there many times and felt like they were family by the time we left! A fabulous find!


  9. Meghan
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:40 am

    Beautiful shop!


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