Workshop Teachers

Linda Kay Benning

Linda Kay Benning has been on a fiber journey her entire life exploring work done primarily by women. She believes their fiber work enriched their lives with color and beauty. Often their skills provided supplementary income for the family, regardless of which continent they resided on. “I am an inch deep and a mile wide in the realm of fiber arts, focusing primarily on the heritage skills,” she recently explained. “My understanding and appreciation grows every time I try something new, often laughing when I examine my first attempt.” She is an active member of the EGA, Chesapeake Region Lace Guild, the International Organization of Lace, Inc., the Bobbin and Needle Lace Organization, and Smocking Arts of America.

Joan Brash

Joan Brash has been making bobbin, needle, tatted and other laces for about 40 years. She is a founding member of the 33-year-old Heritage Village Lace Guild in Western New York, and is an eternal board member and lace day chairman. She has recently specialized in Sol laces, combining classic features of Teneriffe and nanduti into contemporary designs.

Melanie Cervi

Melanie taught herself to tat during her teen years to fill the time between practice sessions on her first love: the organ. After a number of moves, the box with the tatting supplies ended on top and she rediscovered creating lace with a shuttle. She now happily combines her love of music with her love of tatting. Having relocated to Monterey Bay area, she continues to perform, create tatting and teach.

Louise Colgan

Louise Colgan is a lacemaker, designer, and teacher with experience in a broad range of Bobbin Lace techniques. She began making lace in 1985 and has been teaching for over 30 years. She has served on the Board of the International Organization of Lace, Inc. as President, 1st & 2nd Vice-Presidents, Southwest Regional Director, and Grants Committee Chair. She is currently Chair of the Proficiency Program Committee and has been awarded an Honorary Membership. Louise has taught Bobbin Lace classes at many I.O.L.I. Conventions, plus workshops for U.S. members of O.I.D.F.A. and a wide variety of regional guilds. She was invited to teach classes at the Australian Lace Guild’s National Conference in 2012 and for New Zealand’s Bridge Lace Group in 2019. In her capacity as a lacemaker and designer, Louise has exhibited her work both locally and internationally. She was also a participant in the renowned International Poppy Project. Her designs have been included in the LACE EXPRESS magazine and the I.O.L.I. BULLETIN. Additionally, she has published three books of original patterns and has made an instructional video on Milanese Lace through Hensel Productions.

Sylvia Fellows

Sylvia is currently the Program Chairman for the Hedgehogs and the Freeway Lace Guilds. She also holds a seat on the I.O.L.I. Education Committee. Sylvia is currently finishing a book of Chrysanthemum patterns. Before retiring, she was an elementary music teacher.

Pierre Fouché

Pierre’s art was included in the Hunterdon Art Museum’s recent groundbreaking exhibition Lace, not Lace: Contemporary Fiber Art from Lacemaking Techniques. Pierre’s production spans a number of distinctive media and approaches, including traditional craft techniques, recontextualised found objects, performances and interventions. In 2007, he was awarded one of South Africa’s most prestigious art prizes: the Absa L’Atelier award. He is represented by Whatiftheworld gallery in Cape Town, South Africa, where he lives.

Carol James

Carol James has been exploring sprang for more than 25 years, examining items in collections across North American and Europe, and making replicas. She has developed a pattern-writing system to accommodate the variety of designs encountered in her sprang explorations. She is the author of numerous articles, two DVDs and four books: Fingerweaving Untangled, Sprang Unsprung and two books of Sprang Lace Patterns. Carol is spending her Covid lockdown time reviewing her collection of sprang lace images and writing patterns and instruction sheets in order to make the technique accessible to others.

Sivia Harding /

Sivia Harding has worked with fiber and art since she can remember. Obsessed since youth, by adulthood she had dabbled in weaving, spinning, and dyeing among other activities, and came to knitting in the year 2000. Almost immediately, she began to design. She is known mainly for her exceptional lace and bead designs. Her patterns also include accessories, garments, and imaginative Moebius creations. She has been widely published in books and collections, including Jared Flood’s Wool People series, online magazines such as Twist Collective and Knitty, and on Ravelry as Sivia Harding Knit Design. She has been teaching at larger venues since 2009.

Loretta Holzberger

Loretta has been doing some form of needlework since she was a small child. Sewing, embroidery, crochet and knitting were all learned at an early age. Needle lace came much later, in the 1970’s. She has been teaching needlework since the 1970’s too, at her needlework guild, a shop, and later at her lacemakers guild. Loretta enjoys opportunities to share what she has learned with others.

Veronika Irvine

Veronika has a PhD in computer science and has been a bobbin lacemaker since 1995. Taking inspiration from abstract expressionism and the color field movement, she is interested in elevating ground and filling patterns from their supporting role and exploring them in depth. In her academic research, she uses modern mathematics, such as braid theory, group theory and graph theory, to model bobbin lace grounds. Using this model Veronika has proved that there are an infinite number of bobbin lace grounds and has developed algorithms to generate millions of grounds in the Torchon style.

Sherri Jones

Sherri grew up in Texas and had the good fortune of learning a variety of needle arts from her mother and grandmother. She graduated from law school at the University of Texas in Austin, and then moved with her husband to Michigan. Sherri designs counted thread embroidery under the trade name of Patrick’s Woods, and has been enjoying sharing and teaching her embroidery designs for over 25 years. She has taught for needlework shows and private guilds all across the United States, as well as Canada and London. Her designs have been published in “Just CrossStitch” magazine and “Sampler & Antique Needlework Quarterly” magazine. Sherri’s designs are functional, dimensional pieces and are inspired by her collection of souvenirs and novelties of the 18th and 19th centuries. Many of her designs are an interpretation of the old while preserving the sentiment of the era and the quality of hand construction.

Michèle Kelly

Michèle has taught a wide variety of handwork techniques, including bobbin lace, for over twenty years. Michèle is local to our area and hosts a social “bring in what you are working on” event each Thursday at the museum from 11am-1pm every week. Most recently, she has begun teaching beginning bobbin lace online weekly since we can not have students in our physical location. Michèle has been teaching traditional and modern bobbin lace to both adults and children since 1994, with an ever increasing interest in experimentation with stitches and fibers.

Theresa Kelly

Having grown up with threads and discovering Carrickmacross Lace in the 1980’s Theresa Kelly carries on a tradition of lace making that evolved in the Carrickmacross area in the 1800s. Pushing the boundaries of the technique, Theresa has explored many new possibilities, creating her own distinctive style and ensuring she is one of the most influential lacemakers in Ireland. Theresa has participated in many solo and group exhibitions and craft competitions throughout the world. Her work has been exhibited at the OIDFA International Lace Festival in Finland where she won the Sally Johanson Award. She has won the Muriel Gahan Award for Lace Innovation at the RDS Crafts Competition in Dublin.

Jean Leader

Jean has been teaching lacemaking for over twenty years — weekly classes in Glasgow, Scotland where she lives and weekend and longer courses further afield. She has taught for lace groups and The Lace Guild in Britain, and for lace groups and at IOLI conventions in the USA. Bedfordshire, Bucks Point, and Torchon are her main interests and she has written several books including ‘An Introduction to Bucks Point Lace’ and ‘An Introduction to Bedfordshire Lace’, and made videos on ‘Color in Torchon’, ‘Intermediate Skills in Bucks Point Lace’ and ‘Color in Bedfordshire Lace’.

Allie Marguccio

Allie Marguccio is a retired elementary school librarian, lacemaker, and lace teacher. She has recently begun designing her own lace patterns in the Idrija lace narrow tape technique. She was awarded a grant by the Pennsylvania Counsel on the Arts to study traditional lace making techniques in Slovenia under the tutelage of Master Teacher, Stana Frelih of the Idrija Lace School in Idrija, Slovenia. Allie teaches private classes in her home in West-Central Pennsylvania and has taught numerous workshops regionally and throughout the United States. Her work has been exhibited at The Bottles Works Ethnic Arts Center in Johnstown, Pennsylvania and at the Governor’s Mansion in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She has contributed articles to IOLI’s Lace Bulletin and has been featured in several local newspapers. Allie is one of four folk artists featured in the 2018 PBS documentary titled, “Pennsylvania Traditions: Woven Together.” Her video, “The Basics of Idrija Lace Technique,” filmed and produced by John and Kathy Hensel, was launched in October of 2020.

Anna McDowell

Textiles and social history are two of my main interests, and it was during my twenty years working in the museum industry that I discovered Dorset buttons. I am now in the lucky position of being able to combine both my love of textiles with the inspiration from this heritage craft, once a major cottage industry in Dorset. I have researched the history of this industry, including visits to museums to examine original Dorset Buttons in their collections. I now use the original methods to work my buttons using contemporary materials and vintage and ethically sourced yarns. I also try out new designs and ways to use the skills of the original buttoners who made these buttons for their livelihood over 200 year ago. Over the years, I have been lucky enough to work on commissions including film, stage and contemporary fashion and have received awards for my buttons. My most treasured award is the Dorset Shield for traditional Dorset Crafts, and I enjoyed making buttons for Carey Mulligan’s costumes in the film Far from the Madding Crowd.

Victoria Ong

Victoria Ong is an emerging fiber artist from Chicago, IL who is known for teaching and writing about needle lace flowers. Her first book, “Flowers in Threads: Needle Lace for Beginners”, was published last year. She is currently working on the sequel with intermediate/advanced patterns and techniques for 2020. Victoria’s website has patterns, books and supplies.

Natalie Rogers

I was introduced to tatting in 2012, and since I have enjoyed crafts my whole life, I was quick to pick up the basics of tatting. I started teaching friends and family to tat within a few months of picking up my first shuttle, because the easiest way for me to know that I have learned a new skill is to teach it. My first designs happened by accident as variations on patterns I was completing. Since those first few happy accidents I have enjoyed purposefully designing many tatted pieces. I actively participate in Shuttlebirds Tatting Guild of Spokane, Washington and have had the honor of teaching at the Shuttlebirds Workshops from 2014 through 2019. I also had the privilege of teaching at the 66th Annual IOLI Convention. I run, which features tatting playing cards for guided free-form tatting.

Greet Rome-Verbeylen

For more than 37 years now Greet Rome-Verbeylen has taught Lier Lace, in Europe as well as in the USA. She started with traditional designs in white, made more modern coloured creations, and is always searching for other applications of this wonderful, versatile “tambour lace.” You can work this same chainstitch starting on tulle, (= Lier Lace), continuing on any fabric (= point de Beauvais ), and ending with “artistic beading” on organza for clothes, bags, etc. You can even use water soluble fabric to make “A’qua Lace.” In 2018 Greet and the members of the “ Living Lace vzw” organized the “World Lace Congress” in Brugge and 10 other cities in Belgium. It was unanimously called the best Congress ever with in total about 50,000 visitors in Belgium. In 2019 the group “Living Lace vzw” participated in the famous exhibition of “ the Phoebus Foundation” called “Pikant” with more than 80,000 visitors. The next event is planned for 2022.

Máire Treanor

Máire Treanor was born and educated in Armagh in the North of Ireland, completing a degree in Irish Studies at the University of Ulster at Coleraine. She came to Clones in 1988 and fell in love with its local crochet lace, which was at this time part of the rich past of Clones. She revived and has taught the technique of Clones lace in Ireland, Brittany France, and many parts of the United States since the 1990s. She has also researched how Irish Crochet travelled to many parts of the World including Umbria Italy, Kiev Ukraine and Budapest Hungary. Máire has written a book on Clones Lace Mercier 2002, Lacis 2010 and a dvd in 2012. She is a regular contributor to Piecework Magazine.

Karen Thompson

Karen learned to do many types of handcrafts from an early age while growing up in Denmark. Bobbin lace was added in 1974 when she learned the basics from her mother, including how to draft patterns. Since then she has studied bobbin lace in the US and abroad. She has taught at IOLI Conventions and for local guilds, as well as being actively involved in several lace guilds in the US and internationally. In 2017 she published a book on The Lace Samples from Ipswich, Massachusetts, 1789-1790. A 12-Hour Introduction to Bobbin Lace booklet was added in 2020 in collaboration with Kim Davis and Linda Kay Benning.

Louise West

Louise is based in Derby, UK and she designs, makes and teaches bobbin lacemaking, both at home and internationally. She specializes in the English laces of Bedfordshire and Bucks Point, but is always learning other laces for her own enjoyment. Her aim in life is to infect everyone with the passion and enthusiasm for bobbin lace and to pass on her knowledge to keep lace alive for the future.