Meet the Teachers
We take the time to search out the best in the industry, introducing you to exceptional designers, best-selling authors, creative thinkers and visionaries. Taking classes at Original Sewing & Quilt Expo adds to a memorable and satisfying experience.
Patchwork & Paper
Michael Caputo was born in New York and after graduating from The Fashion Institute of Technology began designing children's books for many publishing companies in NYC. In 2008, Michael found a new passion of designing and creating custom quilts. Since then, Michael has designed dozens of quilts for magazines around the world. He has taught quilting classes in London, UK and locally in NC where he and his family now reside. Michael has published 2 books on quilting: 2016’s Quilting Basics and 2018’s Modern Quilting.
Future Fashion Designers
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Shawnelle is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles and the UCLA extension program, where she studied costume design for film. She worked in the Los Angeles garment industry early in her career and then opened her own design studio in Pacific Palisades, where she designed bridal gowns and evening gowns for the Oscars, Emmys, Golden Globes and the Daytime Emmys. In the mid 90s she became a costume designer for feature films, and is a member of the Costume Designers Guild in Los Angeles and has costume designed over 30 films to date. Shawnelle now has a fashion design and sewing school, Future Fashion Designers, in historic downtown Mooresville, NC. She has classes from beginners to advanced and teaches kids to adults. On her YouTube channel "Sew Shawnelle", she upcycles garments into new outfits and shows creative sewing ideas. She also has online classes for aspiring fashion designers and fashion sewists, as well as sewing retreats for the fashion sewists: Camp Sew Social (because adults want to camp too)!
San Diego, CA
Lorraine Henry for Conselle
Lorraine is a specialist in sewing, fitting and pattern alteration for Conselle Institute of Image Management. With a degree in Clothing and Textiles she has been a university instructor. Teaching pattern alteration and fit is her favorite thing to do. She has done this at international sewing shows for many years. Her Two Easy Measuring tape set has been an aid for achieving good fit for fashion sewers throughout the world. With 40+ years experience as a custom dressmaker/tailor/teacher, she has a wealth of knowledge to share with you about sewing and fit.
Inside The Hem
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Lindsey Johns is the host of the popular YouTube sewing channel, Inside The Hem. There she posts videos highlighting garment sewing. She's taught beginner and advanced sewing classes on everything from unboxing a sewing machine to fitting tips and sewing skills. She's also appeared on It's Sew Easy TV showing simple skills for improving garment sewing.
Bay Village, OH
The past 12 years Marsha has been a national educator for SVP worldwide. She is greatly loved for her enthusiasm and lively presentations while sharing masterful technical skills or the inspiration that sewers take away from her events. Using her education background she imparts an empowering "can do" attitude, opening up doors to creativity, and fun ways to embellish projects with exciting results. Student smiles at the end of her events are her reward. Marsha enjoys creating and designing garments, purses and home decor projects which incorporate a creative touch, especially through embellishment. She has had publications in Design in Machine Embroidery and Classic Sewing magazines and had appeared with Sue Hausmann on PBS and Behind the Seams, an internet sewing show through SVP.
Owings Mills, MD
Heather Kojan Quilts
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Heather has been sewing since her teens and quilting for more than 25 years. She considers herself a modern quilter, with traditional roots. Heather is the founder of the Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild and loves speaking to different groups and sharing the modern aesthetic. Foremost a teacher, she teaches modern quilting classes in local shops, guilds and shows across the country. Heather was a contributing author to the book Classic Modern Quilts and a featured quilter in The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters by Sherri Lynn Wood. You can also find her work in Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks magazine and Modern Patchwork magazine.
Quilter By Design
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Debby Kratovil has been "sewing for the camera" for 27 years. As an editor for Quilt Magazine (14 years) she designed and sewed hundreds of quilts and created almost 1,000 "how to" articles to make even the most difficult quilting techniques easy enough for a beginning quilter. She has published 3 books, 11 quilting calendars and hundreds of patterns. She sews and designs for several fabric companies and says she's never met a fabric she didn't like!
Off The Wall Quilt
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Following a nearly 20 year career as a business manager and tax professional while raising three kids with her husband in the Pacific Northwest, Julie retired to become a full time quilter and vendor at quilt shows. Now residing in Florida, Julie teaches, lectures and creates new quilt designs and templates. Her quirky humor and relaxed attitude are reflected in her presentations and not quite perfect quilts.
Martha Pullen Company
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Kathy McMakin is one of America’s foremost authorities in the field of heirloom sewing by machine and by serger. She teaches beginning and advanced sewers from every
corner of the world and inspires a new level of confidence in her students. Kathy is the Director of Education for Martha Pullen Company and produces sewing and serging
events held all across the United States. As the team leader and instructor for the Martha Pullen Teacher Licensing Program for both face-to-face and online curriculums,
she can be found designing, serging, sewing and writing instructions on almost every day of the week.
She has been a guest instructor at events for every major sewing machine manufacturer in the world. She has authored several smocking, sewing and serging books and has
produced and appeared in numerous sewing and serging videos. Her guest appearances on sewing television shows are many. Kathy is going on 30+ years with Martha Pullen
Company and lives in Birmingham, Alabama, with her husband. They have two grown children and three absolutely precious grandchildren.
SVP Sewing Ambassador
Barbara Moore has over 20 years experience teaching and selling Husqvarna Viking products, including time spent as a Husqvarna Viking dealer. She teaches classes and workshops in Sew What's New, Home Dec, Heirloom Sewing and Machine and Serger training. Barbara lives in North Mississippi and teaches locally as well as nationally.
What began as a simple interest in sewing 25 years ago has blossomed into an exciting adventure that Connie loves to share with her students. Her gifts for elegant design,
fabulous color sense and exquisite craftsmanship has made her a highly sought-after teacher in the US, Puerto Rico, Canada and Mexico. Connie is on the faculty of the
Martha Pullen Licensing Program where she not only teaches but creates a great number of projects included each of those courses.
She has traveled and taught for Martha Pullen events and returns year after year as one of the favorite teachers at the School of Art Fashion. Her showcase of skills can
often be seen on PBS television in Martha’s Sewing Room, America Sews with Sue Hausmann and Quilting with Shar. She has the privilege of having garment designs on the
covers of five Martha Pullen books: Lovely Lingerie; Elegant Sewing for Baby; Contemporary Heirlooms for the Older Girl; Six Easy Patterns and Fabulous Fashions. Connie has
authored numerous sewing videos on notions, garment construction, heirloom sewing, quilting and more.
Safety Harbor, FL
Abby has been sewing since her teens, and has over 40 years of experience both as a custom clothier and also in the home sewing industry. Her sewing business experience began with selling Leiter’s Fabrics, then to opening up her own home based businesses first in Madison, Wisconsin then in the Tampa Bay area of Florida, and most recently owning several national companies selling wholesale and retail in the sewing world.
Abby has first-hand knowledge of all facets of the sewing business. As a charter member of what is now the Association of Sewing and Design Professionals, Abby served in several officer positions, including a term as National President of the organization. Years of practical experience in fitting all body types have taught her how to fit quickly and accurately, and with over 40 years of business experience she helps those thinking of entering the field. Abby is a published author and her articles have appeared in various publications and books.
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Kathy is an international sewing celebrity, educator, pattern designer, Serger and fitting expert. Active in the sewing industry since 1962, she is the star of 10 Serger and sewing videos and author of 12 Serger and sewing booklets and her new enhanced books on CD called Three ways to Learn CD'S. You can look at pictures of her projects from start to finish, read the words next to the pictures as you listen to Kathy impart her wisdom and experiences as she develops her projects. If you like a hard copy you can print off as many pages from the CD as you like. Her specialty is to show how to sew and serge fast and easy without sacrificing quality, fit or fashion details. Her fresh, fun classes are brimming with surprises and ideas.
Sulky of America
Nancy Sapin is a Freelance National Educator representing Sulky of America. Nancy has been working with Sulky for the past 15 years, both as a National Educator, designer, and a sample maker. She has worked numerous consumer shows for Sulky, lecturing and teaching. Nancy also lectures and teaches workshops at various quilt and sewing guilds across the United States. You can find some of Nancy's designs in the three latest Sulky books and see some of her other works on her website.
Sew Much Cosplay
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Texture. Textiles. Technology. Teacher. These things sum up award winning fiber artist Cheryl Sleboda, whose work encompasses both heirloom sewing techniques and eTextile technologies. Cheryl spent 20 years in the comic book industry but now pursues cosplay, fiber art, and teaching full time. She’s the author of the Heirloom Sewing Techniques for Today’s Quilter DVD and has appeared numerous times on Quilting Arts TV and It’s Sew Easy TV.
French European Dress Forms
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Joe Vecchiarelli, founder and president of French European Inc., has worked in the fashion industry for over 40 years. During his college years, Joe worked in the family business, sharpening scissors for the industry's top designers. He later graduated from USC's business program and began to realize that opportunities in the apparel business were unlimited. Mr. Vecchiarelli's career took another fascinating turn when he made a foray into the entertainment business working in production with shows like Dancing with the Stars and The X Factor. A few years ago he was approached by NBC to help produce the competitive design talent show, Fashion Star. Presently Mr. Vecchiarelli is ever so busy maintaining his business and helping fashion students and enthusiasts grasp their dreams and become successful within the industry.
l as her own solo exhibits. Nelly enjoys reading, traveling and outdoor activities. She lives with her husband in Aurora, Ohio.
Martha Pullen Company
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Alicia is a designer, author and sewing instructor who specializes in heirloom and serger sewing. She has appeared Martha's Sewing Room with Martha Pullen and has published countless projects under the Martha Pullen Company label. As a beginning and advanced instructor at the Martha Pullen School of Art Fashion, Martha Pullen Teacher Licensings and events throughout the country, she has earned a following of devoted sewists. She is also the Assistant Editor of and a contributing designer for Classic Sewing magazine.