Meet the Teachers
More teachers and classes will be added, so check back often...
A Need To Create
Michelle is the founder and owner of A Need to Create and has always searched for ways to unleash her creativity. From sewing, quilting and embroidering, she is well-versed in various mediums and passionate about sharing them with others. Michelle is a licensed Silhouette Instructor and has been sharing the wonderful world of cutting machines.
Deb Canham Studio
Deb Canham has been a Sewing Educator since the 70s teaching clases in Europe and the USA. In her early days she was sponsored by the Pfaff Sewing Machine Company, Germany. She is a Palmer Pletsch Fit and Serger Instructor. Deb has spent the last 20 years working designing and working with her own factory in China and woking as a consultant to garment factories successfully improving their quality control through education and introducing system techniques. Her love of the serger was probably inevitable given the industrial nature of these machines. She sees the modern Sergers as great Creative tools an designs fun projects for the Serger and particularly enjoys the fun Decorative Threads that perform so well on these machines.
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Karen is an Event Specialist with Pfaff and Husqvarna Viking. She has 25 years of experience in the art of quilting, embroidery, sewing, heirloom and crafting. Karen is known for her enthusiasm in sharing her knowledge with others. Her teaching methods make even the most complicated task achievable for all students. She specializes in continuous machine embroidery, thread and fabric painting and free-motion techniques. Karen has been published in Quilters Newsletter, Craft Ideas and Designs in Machine Embroidery magazines.
Chris has been sewing since she was ten years old, which grew into a passion for sewing of all kinds. She earned a degree in Home Economics and has created all sorts of embroidered, serged and crafty projects. For most of her professional career she worked in the non-profit sector as well as a cottage industry alternations and sewing business. For the past twenty years she has enjoyed working and teaching at a local quilt shop where she shares her love of sewing through classes specializing in the serger, and has published patterns for making creative serger projects.
Fit For Art Patterns
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Rae Cumbie is Creative Director at Fit for Art Patterns whose three core patterns yield one great wardrobe! Her coaching, blog posts, Threads articles and Sew News fitting column encourages stitchers to sew successfully: adding fun, comfortable, fabulously fitting, artful and creative additions to their wardrobe. Catch her blog, Sew! Let's Get Dressed for everything from basic sewing to artful inspiration.
The Decorating Diva
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Known as the "Decorating Diva" Pam learned early in life, while spending time on her grandparents’ farm, that making something from "scratch" was not only a way of life, but it was the better way of doing things. Holding on to those values she went from farm to fabric and has had a very successful 30+ year career as an interior designer and sewing professional. Pam offers professional drapery workroom training. As a seasoned career speaker, she travels internationally teaching her specialty techniques that have brought her years of continued business as the "Couture of Home Dec Sewing". She is the author of Pillow Talk, Cheaper by the Dozen, Got Quilts?, The Tangled Home, Hold Everything and producer of 12 Home Dec DVDs. She has designed many patterns, rulers, scissors and other sewing related notions. An interior designer by profession and a quilter by passion, Pam lives on the shore of Lake Champlain in a log home, nestled at the foot of the Adirondack Mountains, where she teaches sewing retreats. Her down to earth nature, never forgetting her roots, combined with her professionalism creates a warm and creative experience.
Original Sewing & Quilt Expo
Liz has loved sewing, embroidery, quilting, and knitting for as long as she can remember. On her first day of first grade her mother gave her a stamped embroidery sampler and an enthusiastic stitcher was born. Six years of 4-H with a skilled seamstress perfected Liz’s sewing skills. These served her well when she became a home-based seamstress specializing in wedding attire and alterations while her boys were growing up.
Twenty years ago, during her first week as a sewing machine company sales associate Liz suddenly found herself teaching owners’ classes and, shortly thereafter, creative classes. She discovered that she loved teaching almost as much as sewing. As Education Coordinator and instructor for Joann Fabrics at several stores, and writing sewing curriculum for national distribution, Liz also enjoyed empowering other coordinators and instructors.
For the last twelve year as the Sales Manager for Original Sewing & Quilt Expo Liz has become a collector of fine fabrics and patterns. She still loves sewing and quilting when she is at home.
Gerke Enterprises LLC
Tammie started sewing at the age of 8 and have been hooked ever since. She has been teaching at the college level for 18 years. During all of this time she has continued to sew mainly garments but during the last 4 years she has been focusing on quilting, embroidery and starting a longarm quilting business. She teaches garment construction, embroidery and digitizing software classes, and quilting classes at stores in her area. In addition she has taught basic sewing demonstrations at her university for faculty, staff, students, and the general public. Tammie is never happier than when she is teaching others how to sew, taking an image she has for a garment and seeing it come to life, and exploring unique ways to use the longarm to make fabric or how to enhance a garment she is making with embroidery designs.
Oro Valley, AZ
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Lindee Goodall, owner of LindeeG Embroidery, is an award-winning professional digitizer with 26 years of experience in the embroidery field. With her first company, Cactus Punch, she was a frequent guest on popular PBS sewing shows and contributor to both home and commercial embroidery related magazines. Lindee has taught at numerous venues across the U.S. and Australia. She has also written articles on digitizing and embroidery techniques for many publications, including: Stitches, Threads, Creative Machine Embroidery and Designs in Machine Embroidery. She's currently a Wilcom Hatch educator, a Craftsy instructor and has authored four books: Poetry in Motion (for use the P.O.E.M.; out of print), The Embroidery Cookbook (out of print), The Anatomy of a Design: How to Think Like a Digitizer and Become a Better Embroiderer (e-book, 2009) and The Embroidery Recipe: How Your Ingredients Affect Your Results (e-book, 2018).
Lindee continues to digitize both stock designs for her website as well as custom work for other companies. She also creates YouTube videos, provides extensive information on a wide range of embroidery topics on her website at LindeeGEmbroidery.com, and contributes to conversations on various forums and social media platforms. Lindee is passionate about machine embroidery and helping others to make the best of their machine embroidery experience.
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Lori has had years of experience sewing, designing and teaching. She began her career more than 30 years ago, and has many specialties. Her desire and passion for the craft bolted her into a life long career of sharing her expertise across the United States. She owned her own business for many years, specializing in custom clothing design, construction, alterations and quilting, along with various artistic creative opportunities. Lori enjoys sharing her knowledge and excitement as she presents and teaches. She hopes to inspire and encourage all of her students as they embark upon a new journey or continue to enjoy their journey and further their skills.
Judie is a retired librarian turned knitting instructor. Since begging her mother to teach her to knit around 50 years ago, she has never stopped. Judie has been teaching at Harps & Thistles Yarn Emporium, the best yarn shop east of the Mississippi (maybe west, too!) for nearly 5 years. When not knitting or teaching, she enjoys spending time with her husband, two dogs and three daughters.
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.
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Monique is a collage artist of techniques – blending her respect for traditional patchwork with bobbin-work, thread painting, watercolors, felting, weaving, and often on her own hand-dyed and hand-painted fabrics. Many of her compositions include three-dimensional objects with a variety of fibers and textures. Born and raised on the same farm where her grandfather grew up in Northwest Montana, she picked up the tradition of quilting from her mother. An avid quilter and teacher, her mother's work lit her creative fire, and much of what she has learned has come from playing and experimenting together. The things that Monique cherishes most from her mother's teachings are the desire to constantly discover and explore, embracing her sense of adventure, and of course, having a sense of humor. Monique owns and operates Ladybug's Cabin in Bigfork, Montana, and has designed over two dozen patterns for applique, table décor and bed quilts. She considers her patterns an invitation to explore and play, and she loves to share her fascination of color and texture in the fiber arts to inspire others to let their creativity shine.
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.
Palm City, FL
Red Thread Studio
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Inspired by watching her grandma quilt and crochet when she was a girl, Jen has always loved to make things with her hands. She is extremely fond of learning new techniques, but doesn’t always have the time to sit down and sew on her machine, which is why Sashiko (Japanese Embroidery) and English Paper Piecing are the perfect fit for her. Whether she’s running to football practices or volleyball games, these mobile stitch crafts allow Jen to feed her passion for creating even when she is on the go. As an instructor and the owner of the online quilt shop Red Thread Studio, Jen hopes to connect with people around the world and inspire them with her passion for all things stitched. She invites you to join her on her journey as she explores the art of quilting and needlework.
Cedar Grove, IN
Sew Artfully Yours
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Cindy is a fun and enlightening teacher known for her incredible amount of samples and ingenious way of creating. She has been a guest on many TV shows and has traveled extensively...nationally as well as internationally, inspiring people to draw on their own creativity. She has been teaching for over 30 years and her students love her patient and understandable style. Cindy began her business Sew Artfully Yours, Inc. in 1998. In the sixteen years since, she has authored 100s of patterns, design disks and books, always designing new and interesting ways to push the limits of creating with fabric and thread. You will enjoy learning from this exciting and empowering sewing personality.
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.
Bernina of America
Pam has been working with sergers for well over 35 years and has filmed serger segments with Nancy Zieman, Martha Pullen and helped Fons and Porter understand how sergers are for quilters too. Pam has some very creative and innovative ways to use your serger and more than willing to share what she knows with you.
Sew Biz Inc.
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Donelle McAdams is the owner of SEW BIZ, Marion, Indiana. Donelle is the designer of Quick Easy Mitered Binding and Border Tools for the Sewing and Quilting industry that are sold internationally and she is also a pattern designer. Previously a Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher, she has been a quilt store owner for 37 years. As a Gold Accredited Teacher for Westalee Design /Sew Steady, Donelle teaches classes her love and enthusiasm for sewing and quilting is infectious. Taking a class with Donelle is guaranteed to be information-packed, inspirational and FUN! Why Westalee Design Templates? “Quilting with templates is my therapy! I find that I so completely concentrate on my project that I don’t think about other issues of life when sewing or quilting. That’s very relaxing for me.”
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.
Laura Murray Designs
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Artist, entrepreneur, teacher, and author, Laura began her experimentation with textile color and texture in 1989. Her work appears in books, magazines, quilt calendars and galleries, and includes award-winning quilts at the International Quilt Festival, and American Society of Quilters shows. Laura's passionate response to surface design resulted in designing her favorite images in a stencil collection, soon followed by a series of stamps, She has taught thousands of students how to use paintstiks on fabric, and authored books describing her special techniques using stamps, paintstiks, and fusible web to easily create seemingly complex designs without sewing. Laura Murray Designs specializes in techniques and products for quilt and garment artistry, including handcrafted silks and buttons. She and her husband Jim, travel across the U.S. to vend at large quilt and sewing shows.
Middleburg Heights, OH
Original Sewing & Quilt Expo
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. She is a designer, author and an international sewing instructor who specializes in Heirloom and children's clothing construction. Connie is a regular contributor to Classic Sewing Magazine and is on the faculty of the Martha Pullen Licensing Program, School of Art Fashion and Original Sewing & Quilt Expo.
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.
Euro-notions and SCHMETZneedles.com
Rhonda has a dream job. . . teaching sewing enthusiasts about the most important 2" piece of steel in the sewing machine – the SCHMETZ needle. During Rhonda's classes students respond with "a ha" moments and giggles as they learn needle facts. Rhonda enjoys sharing needle knowledge in classrooms and sewing shows throughout North America. She is delighted with the ingenuity and remarkable creations that sewing enthusiasts share. She publishes the monthly SCHMETZ newsletter and the inspirational e-zine, SCHMETZ Inspired to SEW. Rhonda is Marketing Director of Euro-notions and Spokesperson for SCHMETZneedles.com North America.
Catherine Redford was born in England where she learned to knit and sew as a young girl. After relocating from London to Naperville, Illinois, she learned to quilt and never looked back. She's an award-winning quilter, an active member of her local guilds, and a popular teacher at the local and national level. Catherine is a frequent magazine contributor and has enjoyed being a guest on Quilting Arts TV. She is enjoying the resurgence of interest in handwork with a new embroidery book published this fall and with two DVDs and a book on Modern Machine Quilting techniques, Catherine delights in finishing her own quilts on a domestic machine!
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.
Sew Cute and Quirky
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Brianna started sewing many years ago and realized she enjoyed it. She taught high school environmental science, physics and biology full time for many years, but now designs patterns and make bags that bring smiles to others. The company she founded in 2016 – Sew Cute and Quirky – designs and provides patterns for sewing enthusiasts. Brianna is a published pattern designer whose patterns have been been published in Make Modern Magazine. She also received an honorable mention for her bag as a first time entry in the 2019-2020 Hoffman Fabrics First Stitch Challenge. Brianna's Miss Kitty zippered pouch won in the By Annie's Sew Pink campaign in week two and was featured in their October 2019 newsletter. Her patterns have been featured in Lorraine Turner's Calico Horses of Freespirit fabrics catalog and in QT Fabrics catalog. Brianna loves to design, make purses, bags, wallets, organizers and mostly items that can be functionally cute. She is inspired by travel, unique designs, vintage finds and fun fabrics.
Grand Rapids, MI
OnPoint-TV and Quilting With Nancy
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Nancy started teaching quilting classes 27 years ago. Teaching a large variety of classes for beginners to advanced, traditional to art quilts. Teaching online or in person, her goal is to teach students the techniques to make their sewing and quilting experience enjoyable while still learning to be precise and efficient - helping to bring out the artist in everyone.
Silver Lake, OH
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"Everyone can do art, because everyone is a work of art” says Merrily Sprague, watercolor, oil, acrylic and glass artist. “There will only, ever, be one you. Art demonstrates your uniqueness in a fun way”. Merrily’s art career started in high school, being taught by Lisa Drumm of Drumm Studios in Akron, Ohio. She has a degree from Purdue University in graphic arts and photography and was awarded the national Tulsa Graphex II award for her work promoting clean energy for the US government. Her creations have been shown in Las Vegas, California, and Ohio. She loves most to teach and watch others discover themselves.
Big Sky Fiber Arts
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Karen Straight is a fiber artist with a passion for “painting” pets, wildlife, and flowers with wool. Karen first fell in love with fiber when she was a young child and her grandmother taught her to crochet. Ten years ago, she moved to NW Montana with her spouse, five rescued horses, and four dogs. Surrounded by the beauty and wildlife of the area, Karen discovered the sculptural and painterly qualities of wool and became increasingly focused on her artistic endeavors. She opened Big Sky Fiber Arts, an online store offering felting supplies and educational opportunities, in 2015 and never looked back. Today, she “paints” with a realistic style, finding meaning and enjoyment in rendering the beauty of animals and nature as closely as possible. A college educator by profession, Karen joyfully embraces the opportunity to connect with others through art and share in the knowledge she has gained through happy experimentation.
Sewing Machine Artistry
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Michelle Umlauf has made a career for herself in the sewing industry working as an independent educator. She loves to share her passion with others and enjoys sharing her knowledge. She began taking teacher certification courses with the Martha Pullen Company and Sulky of America. Today she is a Demonstrator for Clover and a National Educator for Baby Lock, Sulky of America, and Pam Damour - the Decorating Diva. She helped found and hosted the Sewing Online with Sulky webinar. Michelle enjoys traveling across the country working for one of these companies in their booths or teaching in a classroom at national expos. She also enjoys bringing classes and lecture/demos to sewing shops, quilt guilds, and online. When she is home, she enjoys spending time with her family at their home in the mountains of Maryland. Her German Shepherds and rescue kitty enjoy taking mom on nice long walks in the woods! To learn more about Michelle, lookup her Facebook page Sewing Machine Artistry and join her for a UFO Friday Live. Become one of her "Sewing Friends" at SewingMachineArtistry.com.
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.
Nelly's love affair with quilting started in 1985 while attending graduate school at the University of Montana. One day, while walking into the University Library, she saw the most beautiful landscape quilt hanging at the entrance. She said to herself, "I have to learn to do that". Three days later she was at Geneva Cheffy's home and her life changed forever. Geneva took Nelly under her wing and opened another world for her. For over fifteen years she has been sharing her knowledge as a freelance teacher. Nelly teaches quilt construction techniques and machine quilting. Since 2008 she has taught for Original Sewing & Quilt Expo, which takes her all over the US. She also teaches private workshops, gives lectures and does trunk shows. Nelly loves sharing her talent with her students and willingly encourages them to reach beyond what they consider their normal limits. She designs and publishes quilting patterns and when time permits, she works on other people's quilts using her long-arm machine. She has had numerous patterns published in several issues of Modern Patchwork Magazine. She continuously participates in International, National, regional and local quilt/art competitions and has won numerous awards. Most recently, her work has been included in many exhibits with The Textile Art Alliance of the Cleveland Museum of Art as well 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 Welcher is a designer, author, and sewing instructor who specializes in heirloom and serger sewing. She has earned a following of devoted sewists through her clear and concise teaching methods. She is an assistant editor of Classic Sewing magazine and is on the faculty of the Martha Pullen Teacher Licensing program, Classic Sewing Events and Original Sewing & Quilt Expo.
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Reen opened her online shop, Embroidery Garden, in 2001. She specializes in designing unique and creative ‘in the hoop’ machine embroidery designs that you will not find anywhere else. A lot of thought and pride goes into each design, beginning with the conception of the idea and continuing throughout the design creation, testing, and writing of instructions. In the summer of 2015, she began teaching classes using her designs. Since then, Reen has taught across the country at numerous events as an independent educator. As an author, she has written several articles published in a leading industry magazine. She has filmed various segments on It’s Sew Easy TV and written a project book for a major sewing company.
Gail Patrice Design
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Gail teaches classes and workshops across the country, and now online classes have been a way to stay connected with sewists around the world. Her workshops and lectures are always in high demand and Gail authored the book, Serger Essentials: Master the Basics & Beyond!.