Look up Instructors by Last Name (type part or all of last name in the box below):
Instructor Last Name:


Kelly Agrue

Kelly is a teacher from Dade City, Florida. While her Process-Oriented Left Brain gets a workout with her students, she is happiest when she is able to unleash her Artistic Right Brain! Kelly has many creative opportunities on the farm where she lives with her family and a plethora of furry friends: alpacas, sheep, angora goats, as well as a fluffy giant angora rabbit. She has been felting, dyeing, spinning and weaving for a number of years. She can be contacted at

John Atest

Cindie Bennett

Cindie Bennett is primarily a crochet instructor and designer. She has taught at many fiber festivals along the east coast. Cindie is a Certified Crochet Instructor through Craft Yarn Council. She has published multiple crochet designs into popular crochet magazines. You may follow Cindie at and .

Varian Brandon

Varian Brandon started knitting at eight. A trip to the islands of Great Britain rekindled a love of color and created an interest in the traditions of Fair Isle design and construction. She is currently designing stranded colorwork patterns for several yarn companies, international magazines, and her own website. Currently living in Saluda, North Carolina, Varian has been teaching stranded colorwork and related knitting techniques at local yarn shops, regional fiber festivals, and for the past eighteen years at the Kanuga Knitting and Quilting Retreat in Hendersonville, North Carolina which she coordinates. Online, she can be found at or on Ravelry at varianbrandon.

Roiana Buckmaster

Roiana Buckmaster lives in Mt. Pleasant, TN with her husband, building flocks of Icelandic sheep and heritage poultry. She was taught to knit at age 6 (to keep out from underfoot), embroidery at age ten (to encourage sitting still), and plunged into the rabbit hole of the Fiber Arts World from there. Roiana has been teaching weaving and tatting for eight years at fiber festivals across the South and also at the farm shop (The Tog and The Thel).

Joanna Chantemerle

Nharah Clark

Henry  Clemes

This class will be taught by the tag team of Henry and Roy Clemes. A lifelong woodworker and small business owner, Henry has been building fiber art equipment for almost 50 years and drum carders for over 40 years. Roy grew up working in his family’s woodshop and is the president of Lambtown Festival, the largest sheep and wool show in California. Together they have introduced many innovations to the fiber arts community and their equipment is known for being not only thoughtfully engineered but visually pleasing and durable as well. They regularly consult and instruct spinners, felters, fiber growers, and professional fiber artists in the use of drum carders for fiber prep. Their full lineup of equipment can be seen at and you can find them on social media via @clemesandclemes

Vickie Clontz

Vickie's love of fibers, wool and folk art shine through in each of her classes and the 100+ patterns she has designed for her company, Annie's Keepsakes, which celebrates its 32-year anniversary in 2022! Vickie's projects have appeared in magazines across the nation and abroad, and she brings h er easy-going style and award-winning expertise to each of her classes and workshops. See more of Vickie's work and learn about her textile trip to France in 2023 on her web-site at

Beth Collier

Beth began spinning in 2004 after getting her first sheep. Shortly after she started her business, Three Creeks Farm where she sells her Shetland wool and yarn, Kromski products including wheels and looms, felting supplies, dyeing supplies and a variety of handmade items. She has been teaching spinning and felting since 2010. When not spinning, felting, weaving or sewing, she enjoys chasing her grandchildren.

Rita de Maintenon

Rita de Maintenon is a retired educator, speaker and business owner who moved to Asheville in 2009. She was raised in Germany and learned all dimensions of fiber arts while growing up. She has taught workshops for many years to encourage participants to create their own heirloom treasures and now concentrates on crochet heritage techniques like broomstick and hairpin lace, Tunisian, Aran and Irish crochet. She is a restoration specialist for vintage and lace crochet items. Rita has written 2 books: "Heritage Crochet in a New Light" and "Crochet for Knitters", both available on Amazon. Rita has workshop videos on as well. She is a member of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, a Blue Ridge National Heritage Artist and a Craft Yarn Council of America Certified Crochet Instructor. Her business is Heirloom Treasures Fiber Arts and her websites are: and

Milissa Ellison Dewey

Born in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA, Milissa is PhD-educated in Early Modern European History and History of Science and is an Honors Scholar at Large in the University of North Carolina system, a classical flautist, and a journeyman woodturner. She has worked in the fiberarts since 1994, and in woodturning since 2009. Milissa is widely recognized for her work as a woodturner and also as a competitive spinner: in the 2017 Spinzilla, Milissa placed 2nd place among independent spinners and 5th overall internationally...using only antique equipment! In June 2018, she was featured on National Public Radio demonstrating and discussing her beloved "sock knitting machines".

Karen Dietrich

Jolie Elder

Jolie has explored a wide range of needle arts after learning to cross stitch at age four She designs, teaches, spins, and stunt knits in the Atlanta area where she demystifies the obscure. She has served on the boards of Atlanta Knitting Guild, North Georgia Knitting Guild, Southeast Fiber Arts Alliance, and Center for Knit and Crochet. She has been published in *PLY*, *Spin-Off*, and *Cast On*. Her cleverest unvention is a method for working stockinette-based laces reversibly. You can view her experiments at and YouTube channel Jolie knits.

Brigitte  Elliott

Brigitte Elliott has always been excited by beauty whether in nature or in creative arts. During her lifetime, Brigitte’s interests after learning to knit at age nine, included a variety of needle arts. In 2007, she acquired alpacas that led her to pick up knitting again and teaching. Skacel Collection, Inc. contacted Brigitte to introduce an intriguing form of short row knitting that she learned in Germany from fiber artist and entrepreneur, Gabriele Kluge of Strickrausch. Soon there will be an affiliation with Ms Kluge also. The trademarked name, Swing-Knitting® made its debut at The National Needlearts Association (TNNA) in 2011. Ever since then, TNNA, Stitches events, yarn shops and industry manufacturers continue to ask Brigitte to teach and design for them.

Chelsea Fehskens

Chelsea has learned about the fiber world from farm to yarn living in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Raising Finnsheep, learning to shear and self taught processing, dying and spinning wool opened the world of fiber. When she is not chasing three kids she can be found teaching, sewing project bags and processing wool.

Jean Glass

Jean Elizabeth Glass has been playing with beads and fiber in one way or another for 30 years. She loves to share her passion with anyone who is interested and has generously shared her knowledge during demonstrations and teaching classes at SAFF, the Pittsburgh Knit & Crochet Festival, Stitches, The Fiber Festival of New England, DFW, and many other shows.

Jean Elizabeth Glass

Jean Elizabeth Glass has been knitting for longer than she cares to admit. She was brought to knitting by friends who told her that she could knit with beads thus marrying two wonderful crafts and making her smile. She has taught at the Vogue Knitting Live, DFW, PGH Knit & Crochet Festival as well as at the Southern Animal Fiber Festival, and the Fiber Festival of New England.

Tom Godleski

Tom Godleski has been carving wood spirit faces for the past thirty years or so. As well as being a wood carver, Tom is also the lead singer, bass player, and primary song writer for the Asheville bluegrass group, “Buncombe Turnpike.” Tom has also written four plays. His play, “Fresh Preserves,” won the 2009, “Scriptfest,” playwright competition at The Southern Appalachian Repertory Theater at Mars Hill University. Tom’s other interest are, storytelling, gardening, woodworking, landscaping, and rock masonry. Tom and his high school sweetheart, Terri, live on the property where Tom grew up in the Emma community of Buncombe County. They have two grown sons, Taylor, and Bryan. Tom and Terri have ten Shetland sheep, four alpacas, seven dogs, five cats, three angora rabbits, and one donkey.

Eileen  Hallman

has been spinning cotton on the charkha since 1985, weaving with it since 1986, and has been teaching since 1998. She released her video "Spinning Cotton on the Charkha" in 2004. She also teaches point spinners how to spin fibers other than cotton on the charkha. As a cotton enthusiast, she also dyes it with natural dyes. Her specialty is indigo.

Cynthia D. Haney

Cynthia Dianne Haney, a spindle maker, is passionate about teaching people how to spin. She designs spindles and turns them on the lathe to aid students with high quality performance. Enabling students to make the yarn they want with a spindle. Teaching beginner spinners, of all ages and abilities, since 2011. From individual lessons to specialized group classes at guilds, Camaj School of Fiber Arts, Fiberworld, and Maryland Sheep and Wool. A Virginia native her woodshop and Cynthia Wood Spinner business is in Nelson County. More information and social contacts on

Karin Hedberg

My grandmother was the first person to introduce me to needlework. Since then I've been a lifelong crafter and have enjoyed doing and trying all kinds of needlework. I picked up punch needle embroidery a few years ago and have loved doing it and teaching it. The projects are usually small and very easy to finish, and you can add your own variation and flourish to any project. I especially love inspiring young people to get into crafting and making.

Cecilia Ho

Cecilia Ho of Greenville, SC, was born into a family of designers in Hong Kong. During her last residence in Nova Scotia, Canada, the local sheep farms influenced her passion and direction into felting and fiber arts. Since 2013, Cecilia relocated to South Carolina and has taught thousands of students through one-one-one private & group felting workshops. Currently, Cecilia is a SC Certified Teaching Artist running full-time fiber arts integration programs for k4-8th in the Greenville County School District & senior adults at OLLI Furman University. Throughout the year, Cecilia acts as fiber art instructor at Greenville Center for Creative Arts, Spartanburg Art Museum, Fiberworld Virtual Festival, & many regional communities. She often holds felting demonstrations at museum, gallery & festival (ie High Museum of Art, Smithsonian affiliations museums, Artisphere) across the United States & Canada. Cecilia has taken part in multiple juried contemporary & fine art exhibitions, as well as fashion shows. FELTasticFashion is the business created in 2011 which Cecilia designs & packages all-inclusive felting DIY kits as well as felting supplies. DIY kits are carried by museum, gift & hobby shops across North America. Daily inspirations can be found on Instagram FELTasticFashion. Workshop calendar & felting supplies available from

Pat Holbrook

My first introduction to basket weaving came about 25+ years ago when I signed up for a class being taught by a friend. After that class, basket weaving was added to my list of hobbies. Soon I exhausted my friends and family with gifts of baskets and began participating in area juried craft shows and festivals, coming to understand that there are many who love and appreciate things made by hand. Fortunately, I have had opportunities to demonstrate weaving at the WNC Mountain State Fair, The Cradle of Forestry and also to assist with teaching a workshop at the SAFF Animal Fiber Fair. Recently I was invited to show my creations at the Northwest Trading Post on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Weaving functional baskets is my primary focus – useful and artistic, they are made from natural and dyed rattan, woven into several shapes and sizes, with accents of color. It is a pleasure to share my knowledge of basketry.

Ruth Howe

Needle and thread in hand since age five, Ruth's fascination with all things fiber from a young age included sewing, knitting and crochet. In her late 20's, a curiosity about how cloth was made lead to an orphan loom that needed a home plus a one-week weaving class in 1974 fueled her passion for weaving.� This passion for weaving includes weaving on floor looms, Inkle looms and Rigid Heddle looms. .�

Jules Huntsberger

Jules Huntsberger is a visual artist whose work spans many mediums, including printmaking, tapestry weaving, quilting, fibers, and textiles. Jules grew up in Maine, spent 13 years in Chicago, then in 2013 she relocated to western North Carolina. With over thirty years of knitting experience, Jules offers knitting classes, workshops, and private instruction. Learn more at

Susannah Johnson

Susannah Johnson has been spinning for over 30 years, and teaching whenever she can get somebody to sit still long enough. She weaves, spins, hand-combs, dyes with natural and commercial dyes, and enjoys being a sheep midwife. She owns BellaLuna Sheep & Wool Co., a flock of BFL, Finn, and Corriedale/Merino. New to the flock are the BFF - Blue-faced Finns that have amazing fleeces, and East Friesians to milk. It makes super-moisturizing sheep milk soap!

Tammy  Jordan

Tammy is a fourth-generation fiber artist who enjoys sharing her passion with everyone she meets. Her love of sheep, wool, writing, and inspiring others to learn led her on the path of running her own business, Goldieknots Montana, which specializes in Montana grown wool, locally processed yarn and spinning fiber, and Made in Montana handmade gift items, as well as educational programming in fiber arts. She has written for Ashford’s The Wheel magazine, participated in the Montana Art’s Council MAP program, and has taught at festivals throughout the United States including SAFF, Estes Park Wool Market, and Trailing of the Sheep. Her teaching style is fun, creative, and interactive, and when she’s not in her studio creating or on the road teaching, you can find her writing articles for her local newspaper and spending time with her dogs, sheep, horse, and other barnyard critters.

Jessica Kaufman

Jessica has her Masters degree in Crafts Education, and has been leading hands-on arts programming at schools, summer camps, and workshops for 16 years. In 2016 she opened WAXON Batik & Dye Studio LLC, an open batik & tie-dye studio in West Asheville. Jessica continues to teach traditional and contemporary crafts skills around the region, with a focus on textiles & fiber arts. Her patience, kindness, and love for teaching guide her classes to success.

Galina Khmeleva

Owner of Skaska Designs and author of Gossamer Webs: The History and Techniques of Orenburg Lace Shawls and Gossamer Webs: The Design Collection, Galina is a respected and knowledgeable lace knitting instructor. A former clothing and costume designer who worked with the aristocracy of St. Petersburg, Russia's music and theater society, Galina was a pioneer in breaking down barriers in the new Russia that allowed Russian women to own private companies. As the principal student to Orenburgs lace knitting elite, Galina brings the classic style and traditional knitting techniques of Russian lace to her classes. Her unique, inspiring and fun-loving teaching style has made her the guru of lace enthusiasts across the US.

Tara Kiley-Rothwell

Tara Kiley-Rothwell,weaver and fiber artist, is the owner of kite tales weaving SAORI arts studio in Mechanicsburg, PA. She encourages students to step outside of their comfort zone and experience the joy of free-flowing creativity. Tara began weaving in 2013 with studies in traditional and SAORI weaving, spinning followed shortly thereafter. Tara is a guest teacher at Red Stone Glen Fiber Arts Center, conducts workshops for art educators and artist in residence programs in local schools, and presents and teaches at guilds and workshops across the US. She is a cross stitcher, knitter, spinner, dyer and sheep to shawl team member. She is a past president of the Central Pennsylvania Guild of Handweavers and a member of the Lancaster Spinners and Weavers Guild.

Barry Klein

Trendsetter Group owner/designer Barry Klein has been knitting for 40 years. He started by working in his family's knitting store, where all patterns were designed for the knitter's body. For the past 25 years he has worked as an industry teacher, doing knitting classes all over the world. Barry has designed knitwear for magazines, television shows, ice skaters, and movie stars; authored 5 knitting books; and worked as a spokesman on Knitting Daily and other television knitting shows. He loves to share his love of yarn and everything that can be done with it. Barry has been voted one of the Top 10 Men who Knit/Design throughout history. Learn why 'Let the yarn do the work' is Barry's favorite motto. For more about Barry, go to

Melanie Koenig

Claudia Lampley

Claudia started rug hooking in 2000 and began teaching in 2005. She is a certified McGown instructor, a member of the Tarheel Ruggers and the Merrie Mountain Hookers guilds and a juried member at Dogwood Crafters in Dillsboro, N.C. She has tried many other needlecrafts, but rug hooking has become her passion. She loves seeing a simple drawing come to life as it is hooked.

Nancie McCraw

Nancie has been immersed in fiber since she was a child. She has tried just about everything, but once she learned to spin, she knew that would always be her first love. She has a background in computer programming and electronic engineering and she brings this affinity for the technical to her spinning. She not only knows how, but she knows why. Lynn Vogel, one of her spinning teachers, remarked that it was such a pleasure to have a “thinking spinner” in her class. Nancie has taught beginning to intermediate spinning students at several festivals and events in the southeast, at the NY Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck, NY, and at community colleges in western NC.

Grace McFetters

Grace McFetters has studied various fiber arts since 2013, starting with knitting. She began to explore weaving in early 2017. Grace established her fiber studio, Transcend Fiber Studio, in 2018, and formalized her fiber business in early 2020. She has taught Ukrainian Easter Eggs since 2011, and began teaching fiber arts, including knitting, weaving, hand spinning, and dyeing since 2018. As Grace grows as an artist and continues learning new techniques, she continues to add to her teaching repertoire. She now teaches sewing, both by hand and by machine, as well as some fun topics like needle felting, wool painting, and textile collage!

Pat Murray

Became interested in RugHooking while in the antique business in 1995. Involved in the fiber arts since 1997. Enjoy all aspects of the art from pattern to choosing colors to make patterns come alive. Member of Tarheels Ruggers, Merry Mountain Guild. While a member of Shockley Slip of Virginia was chairman of their fiber auction which raised funds to further the education of all fiber Arts. Taught workshops this year. Am a Certified McGown rug Hooking teacher.

Bex Oliger

Bex grew up in her mother's (Carol Leigh Brack-Kaiser, author of Continuous Strand Weaving Method and Nature Provides Dyes for Rainbows) weaving and dyeing studio. She has been weaving, spinning, natural dyeing, and knitting for over 35 years. Bex is currently a knitwear designer and owner of Hillcreek Yarn & Fiber in Columbia, MO. She and her husband travel to fIber festivals across the country to vend and teach knitting, natural dyeing, and weaving.

Martha  Owen

Martha began her adventure in spinning at the John C. Campbell Folk School, (founded in 1925), in Brasstown, North Carolina in 1978. Since 1980 her extended family has included sheep and angora rabbits. Also a banjo player (since 1973) and known to tell a story or two, Martha's interest in sheep and wool, music and dance, have carried her quite literally and joyfully around the world. Some say she is a wool nerd but her sheep say she is outstanding in her field! Martha became a member of the Southern Highlands Craft Guild in 1988, is currently a Resident Artist at the John C. Campbell Folk School ( Martha is proud that she won the Local Cloth fashion show 2016 for "best use of local products" for her piece: North Carolina Fair Isle

Amie Palmer

Amie is a lifelong fiber arts enthusiast who moonlighted as an electrical engineer in a former life. She believes there are two types of projects: the ones that require concentration and those meant for meeting up to chat with fellow crafters. She always has at least one of each in progress. Amie graduated from Georgia Tech with a Masters in Electrical Engineering then interned for Lawrence Livermore National Lab before working in telecom for ten years. During this time, she dabbled in knitting, sewed most of her own clothing and made a couple lumpy sweaters, but life eventually slowed that down. After leaving engineering and having kids, she discovered that carpool lines are excellent places to pick up an old skill and teach it new tricks. She now finds that basic math and breaking patterns into simple chunks are the best way to take the guess work out of any type of project. She loves using her skills to help others refine their techniques and solve their fit issues so that they love everything they make. Based in Durham, NC, Amie teaches for local yarn shops and regional fiber festivals, as well as Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, and Durham Arts Council. She has taught at Southeastern Animal Fiber Festival, New York Sheep and Wool Festival and Carolina Fiber Festival. She is a TKGA member who is also a TKGA Certified Knitting Judge. When not teaching or designing, she is a technical editor for knit and crochet patterns. Amie’s favorite projects include custom-fitted sweaters, brioche, and exploring the technical side of knitting, sewing and crochet. Her sweaters and colorful felted purses have won awards at the North Carolina State Fair and Southeastern Animal Fiber Festival. Her designs aim to empower her students by giving them confidence and expanding their skills. She can be reached through email at, on Instagram as DaisyAndCloverDesigns and on Ravelry as amiep. Her website is

Pat Pawlowicz

Take fluffy wool and a special needle and you can create magic! There is nothing I love more than sharing my passion for this awesome art form whether I am teaching, writing books, demonstrating, or making art. I teach classes and workshops all over the country and in Europe, at major fiber festivals, bead shows, shops, and for guilds and private groups. My classes are fun and informative, tools and materials are always provided, and written and illustrated take-home instructions are included. Students leave with I did it! attitude and continue to create at home. Safety and correct use of tools is covered in every class. I am always available for questions and support for students! Thank ewe for your time

Sallie  Pollock

Being a needle worker at heart, I always wanted to learn to tat. I tried and tried from books, but could not get the "flip"!!! While still teaching 8th grade English, I came across a newspaper article about a nearby group of tatters. Needless to say, I became a part of that group and they taught me a lot about tatting. Our group name is the Southern Belles Tatting & Needlework Society and we have fun all year long. We decorate Christmas trees in old mansions for the county Christmas tours. We attend workshops and have our on workshops. We teach tatting all year everywhere!!! In addition to the tatting, I love to work filet crochet. I enjoy creating my own patterns and crocheting them. I have a beautiful family- my husband and best friend, takes me everywhere I need to be to teach. Our daughter is a Family Nurse Practitioner who adores her job in an urgent care facility. Then there is me, retired from education for about 11 years, I enjoy spinning, knitting, crocheting, rug hooking, embroidery, dying threads, and especially tatting. Last but not least by any means, is Tuck, my precious French Bulldog who is that one dog of a lifetime. His breed came about largely in part due to needle workers and lace makers. Come take a class and see just how easy this old art is and how you can make it new again!

Denise Prince

Denise Prince's lifelong interest in fiber arts took her on a journey through many of handicrafts of the genre. When she found SAORI weaving she knew she had found her way home. Her journey with SAORI Weaving has brought her a new outlook on life and art, and she is eager to share her love of SAORI weaving you. In her home studio in Peachtree City, GA, Denise teaches weaving, holds fiber related workshops, and hosts SAORI-kai: a time for sharing your SAORI journey with other SAORI travelers. Denise has visited Japan five times to study with Kenzo Jo, son of the founder of SAORI Weaving and President of SAORI Japan, and his teachers at SAORInoMori. Her time there has increased both her love and understanding of SAORI. She looks forward to a time when she can again travel to Japan.

Amanda Sadowski

Amanda Sadowski is a Certified Wool Classer, Licensed Judge for the Pygora Breeders Association (PBA), Chair of the Fiber Committee for the PBA, Award Winning Hand spinner, Level 1 Master Spinner, Clinical Research Coordinator, Statistician, and Instructor. She has been instrumental in advancing the Pygora breed through her research efforts on fiber quality, production, and management which helped her obtain the first Permanent Grand Champion Pygora Buck and Doe for fleece in the history of the breed. Amanda has been a fiber artist for the majority of her life, but it wasn't until she was in a bad car accident and told she would never walk again, that she was led to raise Angora rabbits, Pygora goats, and Merino sheep with her family on their farm in Northwest, Indiana, called Labor of Love Farm. Her experience in raising, processing by hand, blending, spinning, and creating products has given her a unique perspective on what is desirable in a fleece, what preparation is best for specific types of yarn, and their intended end-use. Her experiences with teaching, mentoring, and judging gives her the greatest joy which is not only to impart knowledge, but to kindle enthusiasm in fiber animals, fiber production, and fiber arts. *By the Grace of God, Amanda is walking again today. To learn more visit

Amy Shelton

Instructor Amy Shelton is a fiber artist and crochet designer. For the last five years, she has owned SPARKLE Studio, a working and teaching fiber arts studio located at Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment in Huntsville, AL. She is co-owner of the world-renowned online Crochetville community, which has over 248,000 Facebook fans. She is an expert crocheter who has been crocheting since the age of 9. Over the years, she has added fiber processing, spinning, weaving, knitting, felting, sewing, and embroidery to her fiber arts repertoire. She served on the Crochet Guild of America board of directors for four years and as president for two years.

Hannah Smith

Amy Snell

Amy Snell is a knitter, instructor, and designer with an eye for the unusual or unusually captivating. Her designs focus on color, contrast, and texture, often exploring unique stitch patterns and clever construction in ways that are interesting but accessible. Amy loves to help other knitters explore new techniques and expand the way they think about their knitting. Her goal is to make complex concepts approachable for all knitters, while sharing tips that improve your process whether you’ve been knitting for several weeks or several decades. Amy teaches at national events such as Vogue Knitting Live, Fiberworld, and Rhinebeck, and frequently shares tips and tricks on her website,

Heather Storta

Heather is a TKGA-certified Master Knitter,Tech Editor, and Knitting Instructor. She is the VP of Education on the board of TKGA, a Co-Chair Emeritus on the TKGA Master Hand Knitting committee, an instructor of the TKGA Professional Knitting certification course, the Editor of the TKGA K2TOG newsletter, and a member of the Cast On Editorial Review Board. She has been designing knitwear and teaching knitting for over 10 years. Her designs have been published in Cast On magazine and Knitscene, as well as Knitty and elsewhere. Heather can be found online at and as heatherstorta on Ravelry, Instagram, and Facebook.

Heidi Sunday

Lifelong crafter, numbers nerd and Yarn Shop Owner from Mobile, AL I love to Knit, Crochet and Tat, Weave. Owner of Mobile Yarn in Mobile Alabama.

Jennifer VanSant

Jennifer and Melissa VanSant Having grown up with entrepreneurial parents, running a cottage industry business of making large fabric kites, sisters Jennifer and Melissa VanSant learned about all aspects of creating and selling a handmade product from a young age. As children they attended a Waldorf school, with a heavy focus on fine arts and creative expression. Jennifer went on to study education at Lesley College, and Melissa started and ran an organic coffee shop and vegetarian cafe. Both returned with their respective families to Great Barrington Massachusetts in order to live close to family, and decided to join forces and opened Off the Beaded Path, a bead and craft store in 2005. More than a decade ago their lifelong love of fibers and fiber craft led them into the world of needle felting. They began needle felting gnomes and their woodland friends. Customers in the store were constantly asking: “How do you make them?” “What is needle felting?” This prompted the sisters to begin teaching felting classes and producing their own felting kits to allow people to start creating their own villages of gnomes, and to take a stab at needle felting. They have spent the years since teaching workshops all over the country, have been invited to create art pieces for Vogue Knitting Live (in both Seattle, WA and New York, NY), and have made instructional videos with Interweave press. Jennifer and Melissa are regular teachers both at Vogue Knitting Live NYC and the NY Sheep and Wool Festival – two of the largest knitting/fiber shows in the country, offering workshops with the top teachers in the industry. Their business has grown to include retail trade shows, wholesale kit sales, and endless creative opportunity to make their tiny wooly friends. Jennifer and Melissa take each step in this amazing business with gratitude that people far and wide are embracing their artwork and vision of this gentle, though sometimes scary place called, Going Gnome.

Julie Wilson

Julie Wilson and her family own a farm in Fines Creek, North Carolina. In 1990, two sheep came to the Wilson family. Since then, Jehovah Raah Farm has grown to Shetland sheep, alpacas, llamas, Angora goats, Angora Rabbits, and Scottish Highland cattle. Julie has been spinning since 1990, and has retired from teaching high school Special Education for over 30 years. Julie has been with SAFF since its beginnings in Winston-Salem and has taught the spinning class since instruction was offered. Satisfaction guaranteed by Julie.

Q Wirtz

Liza Q. Wirtz, better known as Q, teaches freestyle weaving in the SAORI tradition, art-batt carding on Strauch carders, and exploratory spinning on her herd of wheels through her fiber-arts business, the Foldout Cat, based at her home studio in the Huntsville, Alabama area. She has taught and vended at multiple fiber events in Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Georgia. Q has been weaving and sewing in the SAORI tradition for several years, and she spins and cards with the same philosophy: create from your heart and put beauty into the world! When she’s not teaching or creating, Q bakes and sings (separately) for pleasure and occasionally practices estate-planning law. Find her as FoldoutCat on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest or on her website,

Regina Yurkonis

I have been a fiber artist since 2006. Expressing ideas with animal and plant fibers quickly led to teaching others these wonderfully creative arts. I began teaching both wet and needle-felting to local scout, school and adult groups in 2008. Began teaching at the Alice Springs Beanie Festival in Australia from 2010 through 2012. Returned to teach there again, in 2016. Taught 3-D animal sculpture at the Sheep and Wool festival in Rhinebeck, NY in 2018. Began teaching ribbon embroidery in 2020 and continue at present, outdoors and with small physically distanced groups.