Teacher Bios

Workshop Instructors (including bios)

(Updated 7/11/2016)


Beginning Soap Making, Fri 5-8

Penny Adler started with 2 dairy goats and a singing goat-whisperer
husband to kickoff her soap making passion and eventually started
444Farm Soaps. She began making soaps in her kitchen over 6 years ago
until her dear husband quietly evicted her and built her a small
workshop. She now indulges by regularly creating goat’s milk soaps and
lotions and is thoroughly hooked on a craft that is practical, creative,
and challenging. While not responsible for bathroom remodels or large
water bills, 3 words do explain the phenomenon – SHOWER BUBBLE
BATH! She sells her soaps at special events, wholesale and online at
www.444Farm.com and is now teaching the craft to others.


Warping a Floor Loom, Fri 1-4 & 5-8

Lyla Agius studied weaving in 2007 from Hannalore Cole a master
weaver from Germany who teaches in Mountain View California, and
has been weaving ever since. Although Lyla has studied Interior Design,
she has her degree in Fashion Design. She uses weaving for these two
passions, Home and Apparel. Lyla also spins, knits and loves fiber and
fabric as an art medium.


Triangle Weaving, Sun 8:30-10:30
A Twined Hot Pad, Sun 12:30-3

Sandi Benge has been making rugs, teaching, and demonstrating rug
making for over 20 years. Her rugs have been in many exhibits in
southern Minnesota. Twining is her favorite method of rug making and
she also enjoys dyeing and weaving. When Sandi is not doing fiber
crafts, she is spending time with her mini horses.


Knitting an Entrelac Hat, Fri 1-3
Knitted Lace Shawl Explained, Sat 9-1

Cris Bjork is a knitting instructor and pattern creator with 40+ years of
knitting experience and extensive knowledge of yarns and fibers. She
has spent most of her life knitting, spinning, and herding sheep and kids
in Western Iowa. Her classes range from beginner to experienced and
flow with an easy, fun, low pressure approach to learning. She teaches
class and retreats in Western Iowa and for several years at NCFF. She
has studied under Meg Swansen, Amy Detjen, Franklin Habit, and
Galina Khmelena.


Felted Tote Bag, Sat 9-12
Pinwheel-Top Cap, Sun 8:30-11:30

Diane Corson is a fiber artist and pattern designer who lives in Ames,
IA. She began hand-dyeing the wool for her creations when she
couldn’t find any commercially-dyed yarn that was the exact shade of
yellow she was looking for. She now works with both natural and
chemical dyes, loves lots of other colors as well as yellow, and keeps
pushing the boundaries of conventional thought regarding color and
design. She is the owner of Art You Can Wear, a fiber studio whose oneof-
a-kind wearables are found in boutiques and galleries in central
Iowa. Diane is delighted to be returning to teach at NCFF again this


Basic Fair Isle Knitting, Sat 1-3
Designing Fair Isle Projects, Sun 12-2

Fair Isle knitting and designing patterns for sweaters, gloves, bags and
other items has been a passion of Jeanne Davidson for many years. She
taught Fair Isle knitting and design classes in Arizona for several years.
Jeanne loves watching people try it for the first time and realize the
wonderful possibilities knitting with two colors at once presents! Many
of her projects are on Ravelry – FairIsleFunatic.


Lace Crochet Necklace, Sat 1- 4
Two-Color Topper in Tunisian Crochet, Sun 12:30-3:30

Carla Fauske was taught knitting at the age of 4 by a generous and
patient 80-year-old neighbor, but her interest in lace and lace-making
began in the 1970’s with crocheted lace edgings and—yes—doillies. Over
the past 4 decades, she has taught classes in knitting, tatting, beadwork,
hardanger embroidery, and crochet: from tapestry and tunisian to lace
work including Irish, Filet and Brugges. She enjoys every part of
handwork from concept and design to meticulous finishing and sees
every class she teaches as a design class, geared to help introduce the
yarnworker to her or his own hands!


Lichen Identification & Ethical Harvesting, Sat 9-10:30

Carrie Gray-Wood is a geography instructor at Black Hills State
University by day, and a fiber artist by night. A recent trip to the Pacific
Northwest opened her eyes to the amazing and sometimes microscopic
world of mycology and made her anxious to apply her newfound
knowledge to her art. She has been working in the fiber arts since 2004.
Carrie knits, spins, dyes and crochets and her approach to creativity is
to jump in feet first and she thinks you should too!


Book Binding, Sat 1-4

Connie Herring has an MFA in sculpture from the University of South
Dakota. She has exhibited her sculptures and installations throughout
the Midwest, and maintains an active exhibit schedule. She also
designs and makes jewelry and books. Connie has taught numerous
workshops for children, college students, adults, and teachers, and
taught art at Dakota State University for nine years. Connie creates
books made with handmade paper, dyed fabrics, and inkle woven
bindings as well as purchased papers. She also creates books to be used
with her sculptures.


Weaving with a Bow, Sat 9-1

Joy Kammerer has been involved in fiber arts since high school.
Starting with crocheting and knitting, she then moved into spinning
and weaving. Over the years, she has raised sheep and at one time ran a
carding business with a friend. Joy belongs to spinning and weaving
guilds in Rapid City, and teaches individuals and small groups
interested in fiber arts. With family members, she attends fiber art
shows with Joy’s Wool Bag. The booth showcases felted hats, other
felted items and handmade articles. Joy enjoys teaching and certainly is
a fiber fanatic.


Beginning Wheel Spinning, Fri 2-4
Beginning Wheel Spinning, Sun 9-11

Kelly Knispel, a hand spinner and shepherd of +25 years, raises
Bluefaced Leicester sheep and Angora goats for their beautiful wool and
mohair locks in the “land of infinite variety.” She hand shears the long
locks, processes the fibers using plant dyes or protein fiber dyes which
are then carded into a cloud on “Clara,” an industrial carding mill at
Dakota Carding and Wool Co. Kelly spins the wool & fibers on spinning
wheels where they become luxurious yarns to knit and
weave. Biotayarns© wearable art designs, color fiber blends & yarns
are created at Dakota Carding & Wool. These are one of a kind creations
inspired by the colors that grace the prairie landscape.


Basic Dog Obedience, Sat 9-10:30
Advanced Dog Obedience & Agility, Sun 1-2:30

Tracy Kobberdahl has been training dogs professionally for over 25
years. She has a BS from Black Hills State University in Biology. Her
kennel is Billabong Border Collies (billabongbordercollies.com) where
she trains border collies to herd and show in competitive obedience.
Tracy conducts dog obedience and agility classes year round and is well
known for her techniques on dog behavior “reading” and teaching
people her techniques in communication with dogs. Dog speak, human
interactions, dog to dog interactions, and the basics of obedience
training for an improved relationship with your dog is not only a
philosophy but a way of life.


Beginning Knitting for Kids, Sat 2-4

Jeri Kurtz is an experienced fiber artist. She has taught knitting and
crochet for 50 yrs. Besides crochet and knitting, she enjoys embroidery,
sewing and quilting, and spinning.


All about Locks Fri 1-4
Finishing School for Spinning Fri 5-8
Color & Creativity for Spinners, Sat 9-12 & 1-4
Fine Tune Your Wheel, Sun 8:30-11:30
Spinning a Sound Singles Yarn, Sun 12:30-3:30

Kate Larson loves using fiber arts as a bridge between her passions for art
and agriculture. Her fiber journey has led her to a degree in soil
chemistry, travels through northern Europe in search of textile
traditions, and back to the farm where her family has lived for six
generations. She keeps an ever growing flock of Border Leicester sheep
and teaches handspinning and knitting regularly in central Indiana and
around the country. Kate is the author of The Practical Spinner’s Guide:
Wool, Her articles and designs have appeared in Spin-Off Magazine
and several other Interweave publications. She manages the Spinner’s
Connection blog at SpinningDaily.com and keeps her own blog at


Beginning Bobbin Lace, Fri 4-8

Jill Maisch have been involved with the fiber arts since a very young
age. At 4 years old, she begged her mother to teach her to crochet. Over
the years Jill has included knitting, spinning and all other crafts that she
can find room for in her studio and husband’s shop to store supplies and
have work space! To learn to bobbin lace (or knippling, in Danish) she
had to beg her grandmother to teach her and she has been working at this
art for over 30 years. Jill demonstrates at her town festival and has also
taught felting classes.


Bengala Soil Dye, Sat 1-4
Saori Free-style Weaving, Sat 9-11 or Sun 9-11 or 12-3

Chiaki O’Brien is a SAORI Leaders Committee Certificate recipient. In
2004, she brought SAORI Weaving to Minnesota when she and Dan
moved from Japan and opened the SAORI Studio “FUN” in Chaska,
MN. She is a teaching artist for the Weaver’s Guild in MN and other
local arts organizations. As a 2015-16 visiting artist, Chiaki has taught
Pre K-12 at the Blake school (MN). She also visits independent living
sites to do SAORI sessions with older adults. Chiaki teaches at
Shepherd’s Harvest (MN) and other fiber related festivals around the
region. She has Studio FUN in her home in Chaska, MN. Saori Weaving
taught her the way to create by following her heart. In 2012, Chiaki was
awarded a Jerome Fiber Artists Project Grant allowing her to study
“Bengala Dyeing” in Japan. She now teaches this natural soil dye
process as well. Chiaki wants to convey the “Joy of Exploration” to
students in her classes. Website: saoristudiofun.com


Saori Free-style Weaving, Sat 9-11 or 1-4 or S u n 9-11 or 12-3

Dan O’Brien was accepted into the SAORI Leaders Committee in the fall
of 2003. He is the first non-Japanese certified SAORI instructor. Since
2005, he has been active as a teacher at sheep and wool festivals,
children’s fairs and art festivals . He has a master’s degree in Advanced
Japanese Studies and currently teaches social studies in a high school as
well as teaching SAORI Weaving lessons throughout the year. Dan is
also an author and artist.


Wool Drying Basket:Taking off on the Tradition, Fri 1-4 & 5-8

Gary & Carol Oslage live in northern Wisconsin. They have been
teaching and weaving baskets for over 25 years. Carol worked as a
librarian and read about the history of baskets and how they are used.
As early people moved from place to place they had to have something
in which to carry their food and supplies. Carol and Gary’s true love is
making baskets that have a use, like the early baskets makers made.
Oslages’ baskets are both decorative and functional.


Fitting Your Knitting, Fri 1-4
Sideways Sweaters , Fri 5-8 & Sat 1-4
Knitting with Handspun & Luxury Yarn, Sat 9-12
Bringing out the Best in Your Variegated Yarn, Sun 8:30-11:30
Circular Knitting 5 Ways, Sun 12:30-3:30

A knitter, designer and teacher for many years, Margaret Radcliffe is the
author of the Knitting Answer Book, The Essential Guide to Color
Knitting Techniques, and Circular Knitting Workshop. Her latest book,
The Knowledgeable Knitter, was released in 2014. Since 1997,
Margaret has published a line of patterns under the name Maggie’s
Rags. Margaret’s books explore knitting techniques in a depth well
beyond what’s usually presented and do so in a way that makes both the
techniques and their appropriate uses clear to readers. As a designer,
her specialty is rewarding garments that look complicated but rely on
the simplest knitting techniques. As a publisher, she focuses on patterns
that help knitters learn new techniques and improve their skills. As a
teacher, Margaret enthusiastically teaches everything from beginning
knitting to garment design, and is acclaimed for her ability to help all
knitters to develop their independence and creativity. She teaches at
venues such as conferences, folk schools, retreats, shops and fiber
guilds across the US and into Canada. Like many knitters, Margaret has
a varied background with degrees in Medieval studies and English
Literature. She has been an internal auditor, computer programmer,
business executive, research administrator, dancer, and editor.


Perfectly Portable Crochet, Fri 5-8
Basic Brioche Knitting, Sun 12:30-3:30

Shaina Scott has been knitting and crocheting since 2007 and has been
designing since 2011. In the fall of 2015 her brioche knitting pattern,
Hatchmarks, was published in Knitters Magazine. She has had both
knitting and crochet patterns published in Knitpicks pattern collections
as well as a few self-published patterns. She enjoys sharing her love of
fiber with anyone who will listen and loves to teach new techniques to
anyone willing to learn. Because of this, she has had vast amounts of
experience teaching new techniques to knitters and crocheters over the


Recycled Felted Eyeglass or Phone Case, Sun 11:30-3:30

Kathleen Taylor is a spinner, knitter, and writer who has taught craft
and knitting classes in South Dakota, and around the country, for the
last 14 years.


Beginning Needle Tatting, Sun, 8:30-11:30

Marta Telkamp has been knitting for 30 years and crocheting for 25.
She was looking for a new challenge. After struggling to learn
traditional tatting, Marta discovered needle tatting and fell in love.


Dye Color Theory, Fri 2-4
Beginning Nalbinding, Sat 9-12

Amy Vander Vorste is an avid fiber arts fan dabbling in nalbinding,
spinning, knitting, weaving, dyeing, and anything else fiber related that
comes her way. She is interested in the Viking age and has enjoyed
historical re-enactment of the period. Learning nalbinding was just the
next step in learning about textiles of that age and helping to preserve
the craft. She learned nalbinding in 2009 and has been teaching it since
2012. Amy loves try to push the craft to new limits. Nalbinding classes
she’s taught so far include Beginning Nalbinding, Nalbound Hats and
Nalbound Mittens, and Nalbound Stitch Sampler, and the Karman
Vortex Nalbound Scarf. You can find Amy at shyredfox.com and on
Ravelry as cloudlakes.


Spinning Off the Quill, Sun 8:30-11:30

W. Michael Woody began spinning on a Navajo spindle in 1957 while
living with his grandmother on the Navajo Reservation in Arizona. Later
he moved to Southern California to pursue his fiber interests and
creating with anything that turns. Michael has been a potter, an auto
mechanic, and an elementary school teacher. While teaching, he found
that spinning and weaving fit into the Social Studies and Science
curriculum. His students learned to spin, dye and weave their own yarns
using the natural dye process. Michael retired and moved to Rapid City.
He continued to spin and weave, adding skills in turning wood on his
lathe. He now makes spindles and other tools for fiber artists and crafts