2013 HHFF Instructor Biographies
Heather Bussell is a mixed media artist, jewelry artisan, and design instructor living in Indianapolis, Indiana. She holds degrees in fine art from University of Indianapolis and interior design for IUPUI. As the daughter of a quilter and radio engineer, Heather grew up sewing and repairing electronics with her parents. This formed the basis for her rather eccentric artistic sensibility. Heather draws inspiration from the interplay of traditional handmade items paired with cast-off elements of modern technology. Her work emphasizes a combination of materials, featuring contrasting elements that blend together to form a unified design. She feels blessed that she can contribute in any way to the creative community and hopes to spend the rest of her life inspiring other people to do the same.
Nancy de Caprariis started weaving in the early 1970s and has pursued it on one loom or another (sometimes several at once) since then. She especially enjoys exploring colors and textures and feels that a weaver doesn't need a complex loom to create something beautiful. The rigid heddle loom offers that opportunity! Nancy opened her shop, Sheep Street Fibers, in 1999 where she and her husband, Pat, and their business partner, Tim Ackerman, currently offer classes in knitting, spinning, and weaving and care for their 90 sheep and 2 alpacas.
Robin Edmundson is an award winning fiber artist specializing in color. She has extensive experience teaching and lecturing on spinning, weaving, dyeing, color theory and creativity. Robin was a recipient of an Indiana Artist Grant by the Indiana Arts Commission and her work has been shown in many fiber arts exhibitions and fine art/craft shows. She lives in Greene County, Indiana where she homeschools her children, gardens and uses all kinds of dyes. On dye days, she often looks like she jumped into the vats herself. Her fondest wishes are to conquer the bugs that attack her squashes every year and to train the ducks to pull the weeks but not the flowers out of the flower beds.
Boyd Hastings has been the shepherd and resident fiber artist at Morning View Farms near Brookville, Ohio for the past twelve years. His most recent award-winning needle felts include either a Best of Show or First Place at Michigan Fiber Festival, Hoosier Hills Fiber Festival, and the 2012 International Blue Ridge Fiber Show in Asheville, North Carolina. His contagious enthusiasm for experimenting and exploring new techniques is evident as he shares his skills and knowledge with other in workshops and classes. He enjoys doing commissioned felts for his clients of their farms or homesteads, their favorite animals, or their special places. A retired teacher, Boyd lives with his wife, Jeri, on their small farm in Trotwood, Ohio.
Patti Hodge has been raising Alpacas and Llamas for 15 years. Her love of fiber and fiber arts developed and has progressed since this time. She began by taking several fiber classes from world renowned teachers that included: dyeing, spinning, rug hooking, and felting. Patti found her passion lies with wet and needle felting. For the last 10 years, she has been experimenting with different fibers and wool, trying out surface designs, embellishment, adding attachments and making her own patterns and shapes. She has taught several classes on Wet and Needle Felting at yarn and fiber shops, fiber festivals, group meetings, and in her home. Patti loves sharing her experiences with fiber and creating memories of a long ago art that is gaining in popularity. Patti believes that felting is an art that you can put a lot of creativity into and you do not always know how it will turn out, usually even better that you imagined, and if not, you can always make something else from it. She has learned that it is possible to recycle many items with great success.
Mandy Jared earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Herron School of Art in Indianapolis. For 10 years she taught various art classes. Her favorite class to teach was fiber arts because it thrilled her to teach traditional crafting skills to a generation that had all but forgotten about them. Her favorite materials to work with were the ones that were destined for the landfill. In 2010, she left the school environment and opened up her shop where she rescues unwanted art materials and equipment and sells them to other artists and crafters at pay-as-you-wish pricing. She also teaches Creative Inspiration workshops through her store to inspire members of her community and teach them how to use non-traditional materials in new and innovative ways.
Bev Larson has been weaving since 1988 and teaching since 1999. She loves to share the joy of basket weaving with those around her and has done so by teaching in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Kentucky, North Carolina and Oklahoma. Making basket weaving fun, relaxing and inspiring is her goal. She came in first place in the Eiteljorg Weavers Challenge.
Heather Robinson It was socks that did it. An avid crocheter for 20 years, Heather came across a hand knitted sock pattern and decided she just had to learn the wonders of knitting. The pictures in the pattern were of just the needle tips though. Having crocheted first, Heather found it easiest to wind the yarn around the left hand's finger and start knitting. A year later Heather found out that this wasn't the way most people learn to knit and it also had a name: Continental Knitting. Always apt to learn something new, Heather taught herself English style knitting and now uses them both, especially when knitting Fair Isle Knitting. Heather has been knitting for the past 6 years without stop (except when the call to crochet is too loud to ignore). She currently is employed at Starstruck Cat Studio in Greenwood, IN, where, among other things, she assists people in learning the intricacies of knitting (and crochet). She is currently teaching Beginning Crochet at the studio.
Victoria Smith A crafter from day one, I have experienced many media and found spinning and knitting about 10 years ago. I teach spinning, knitting, tatting and various other creative classes at Grinny Possum of Jeffersonville, IN. I also teach one-on-one as well as spinning and knitting at various regional events. Founding member of Fiber eXchange Guild of southern Indiana and Southern Indiana FiberArts Festival.
Benita Story Benita is a spinner with ten years of experience and has taught spinning, knitting and weaving for the last five years. She is a past Vice President of the Indianapolis Knitting Guild and has been a member of Weaving Indiana and Indy Spinners, Weavers and Dyers. She is currently a
member of SWIFT (Spinners and Weavers of Indiana – Fibers and Textiles) where she was the
newsletter editor for four years before the format switched over to the web.
Benita’s other passion is natural dyeing and each year she hosts a Natural Dye Day event in
Pendleton, Indiana, on Columbus Day, (event is free to the public). She and business partner,
Sandy Ferguson, have opened their own business called Dyed in the Wool where they specialize
in The Fiber Binder Club, tie-dyed apparel and accessories, spinning fibers, blended batts, and
naturally dyed yarns.
Marti Taylor began rug hooking in 1992 and enjoys teaching the history and art of rug hooking to all ages. She is currently a member of the Hoosier Hills Rug Hooking Guild and the Association of Traditional Hooking Artists. Her designs have been featured in various publications including Rug Hooking Magazine. Marti hasn't always been a rug hooker. Her love for fiber arts started at an early age and she is talented in all aspects of needlework including quilting, embroidery, and applique. She has over 20 years of experience as a fabric buyer and manager of two successful quilt shops. Marti is the owner of Olde Glory Designs and designs primitive rug hooking canvases, wool applique and hand dyes wool. Her rug and applique patterns as well as hand dyed wool are available on her website www.oldeglorydesign.com
Carol Wagner has been spinning for over twenty years and began dyeing to satisfy her love of color. She uses the dyed fiber to card into rovings which become one of a kind designer yarns. Carol works with fibers on a daily basis at Hidden Valley Woolen Mill, which she operates with her husband Paul. Her choice of fiber comes from the flock of 215 Coopworth sheep.
Valerie Zumwalt I am a knitting teacher, knitwear designer and yarn dyer from Columbia, Missouri, doing business as MamaZooma Handknits. MamaZooma emphasizes no fear knitting. The goal in my classes is to give each knitter an ah-ha moment where they think “I never thought of that, but it makes sense.” I also want them to leave class with a confidence that they didn’t have in the beginning. Too often, I hear knitters say, “I could never do socks (or a sweater, or cables, or
circular knitting etc),” and that’s just not true. What if they had said “I could never knit”? What happens after that first spark to pursue knitting followed by the joy that that first project brings? Through technique-building classes and patterns, MamaZooma builds confidence for no fear knitting. As a knitter of 10 years and a former yarn shop worker and manager, I have worked with knitters of all skill levels.