Yarnover 2023 Teachers
Photo of Diane Augustin

Diane Augustin

Diane teaches knitting, crocheting and Tunisian crochet classes at several yarn shops and art centers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul/St. Croix Valley area. One of her passions is knitting and crocheting with beads. She has been teaching professionally for ten years. Her background as a graphic artist in the publishing industry facilitates her ability to design, write, produce and publish her patterns. She is also the photographer. Diane continuously develops new designs, offering them as classes, with a focus on teaching techniques.

Learning to knit continental or combination style at seven years old from her grandmother, was how Diane began her love for the craft. She was so drawn to knitting, her grandmother had to teach her in order to get her own knitting back!

She lives in western WI, just outside of Hudson, with her husband, Lance and the bosses of the household, Alex and Rosie, their brother and sister rescue felines.

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photo of Denise Bell

Denise Bell

When she was growing up, Denise always performed some kind of handwork. Upon learning to knit she was instantly addicted. Wherever she looks, Denise sees patterns, so it’s no surprise that her knitting emphasis is lace and colorwork. Denise is a sought-after instructor who teaches coast-to-coast at knitting conventions, yarn shops, retreats, and guilds.

Travel and spending time in the natural world provide inspiration. Her first book Ultima Thule – Patterns Inspired by the Shetland Islands drew from Shetland knitting traditions, but also from life-long Shetlanders themselves. Her next book, Deep Roots – Patterns Inspired by the Tallgrass Prairie took the same approach to the flora, fauna, and inhabitants of this distinctly American landscape.

Her business, Lost City Knits, named for the community nearest her Oklahoma farm, offers traditional yarns, fine hand-dyed yarns, and original designs. When not knitting, teaching, dyeing, or designing, Denise puts her pattern-seeking abilities to work solving cryptic crossword puzzles, and because no one can do just one thing, she also kayaks on lakes and streams near her eastern Oklahoma home.

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photo of Barbara Benson

Barbara Benson

Despite the fact that Sarasota, FL doesn’t have ideal knitwear weather, Barbara loves living and knitting in the South. Self-proclaimed as “a bit silly and a bit nerdy”, this often translates into her designs. When it comes to the art world, her love for the Art Nouveau and Art Deco movements shines through with intricate stitch work and swooping shapes. When not knitting she can frequently be found sailing or playing video games. Author of two books: Mosaic & Lace Knits: 20 Innovated Patterns Combining Slip-Stitch Colorwork and Lace Techniques and Big Yarn, Beautiful Lace Knits: 20 Shawls, Hats, Ponchos, and More in Bulky Yarn, she also has an extensive catalog of both independently published patterns and patterns in curated knitting publications.

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Photo of Alexandra Davidoff holding up a knit hat.

Alexandra Davidoff

Artist and designer, Alexandra Davidoff blends textures, colors, cultures and techniques to create unique pieces of wearable and decorative art. Her knitwear designs appear in Vogue Knitting, Noro, Malabrigo, Creative Knitting, Knitter’s and books and magazines, plus she is working with a number of yarn companies and online websites, including Knitting Fever, Cascade Yarns, Lion Brand Yarn Co., Knitty, Annie’s Crafts and Simplicity.

Alexandra has been teaching knitting classes and workshops in the United States, Israel and Rwanda, Africa.

Before becoming an Indie Knitwear Designer, she worked in the apparel industry, designing garments and accessories for Cold Water Creek and Soft Surrounding. She got her Fashion Designer degree from The Art Institute of Dallas. Alexandra lives and works in Dallas, Texas, together with her husband, two daughters and adorable cocker spaniel.

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Photo of Kristin Drysdale

Kristin Drysdale

Kristin Drysdale is an internationally renowned expert in Nordic knitting. Inspired by her Scandinavian heritage, she is a master of Norwegian, Swedish, Danish and Icelandic knitting design, technique, history, and symbolism. She has spent many years studying abroad and gathering techniques in knitting circles from Norway to Austria. She loves to share her love for Nordic Knitting and has taught workshops across North America and Europe.

Kristin has taught and designed for over 25 years. She has an extensive line of self-published patterns and her designs have also graced the pages of Laine Magazine, Knitting Magazine, and Knitter’s Magazine. She has also designed for Harrisville Designs and Brown Sheep Wool Company. Her lovely designs are found on knitting needles around the world. Her first book “The Nordic Knitting Primer” was published January 15, 2022.

Kristin specializes in continental knitting, colorwork, and how to make sweaters that fit any body type. Her goal is to help knitters everywhere become independent and confident makers. She believes anyone can learn to create heirloom garments that fit, last, and are beautiful both inside and out. 

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KiraDulaney

Kira Dulaney

Kira Dulaney has been teaching fiber arts classes and hosting crafty events in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond since 2002. As a teacher, her focus is on providing valuable information in a stress-free environment, and supporting students through the learning process. She is also the designer behind Kira K Designs, a line of original knitting and crochet patterns and kits featuring clean lines and intriguing details that are both interesting to make and easy to wear. Kira has taught at Estes Park Wool Market, Interweave Yarn Fest, Lambtown Festival, the Natural Fiber Fair, Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, Stitches events, and TNNA, as well as numerous guilds and yarn shops.

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Photo of Cori Eichelberger

Cori Eichelberger

Cori Eichelberger, of Irocknits Designs, was a former high school English teacher for at-risk students, whom she also taught to knit. She has over 20 years’ experience teaching beginning knitting, and technique classes and her workshops are popular at yarn shops and retreats throughout the United States. Her classes feature a sense of humor, a high energy style and an enthusiasm for the craft.

Cori co-authored the book Minnesota 52: 16 Knits Inspired by the Road in 2017. And in the Fall of 2020, she published Knitwords: 8 Patterns and 10 Musings that Celebrate the Knitter.

Cori produces a bi-weekly YouTube podcast – “Irocknits” – where she tries to inspire knitters to make beautiful sweaters and shawls while sharing ‘Tips and Tricks’ and a touch of humor. Why Irocknits? “Iroc” is Cori spelled backwards which she discovered when she saw the Iroc Z28 Camaro in 1978 pull up in her driveway. LOL

Cori is known for her love of color, especially orange, and she thoroughly enjoys knitting nightly in her rocker recliner until all hours because she is a certified night owl. While she learned to knit in a community education summer class in 1981 with a long straight needle tucked under her arm, she currently knits continental and loves showing knitters the joys of colorwork stranded knitting.

Cori uses she/her pronouns and currently lives on Wahpekute land* in southwest area of Minneapolis, Minnesota with her husband and a large chocolate labradoodle.

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JoyceJones

Joyce Jones

Joyce is a TKGA-certified Master Knitter and serves as a Co-chair for TKGA’s Master Hand Knitting program. She has developed mini courses for their educational offerings and is an instructor for their Professional Knitter course. Guiding knitters through the rough patches of learning new techniques and making knitting fun and rewarding is her teaching mission. She has presented technique classes and presentations for TKGA as well as community groups and libraries for over 10 years. She writes technical articles for, and has designs published in, Cast On magazine. 

Photo of Simone Kereit

Simone Kereit 

Simone Kereit, also known under her design name OwlCat Designs was born and raised in Switzerland, where she learned to knit around age five. Since (kids) knitting patterns were not often available, she learned to design her own knitwear at an early age.

She brings her enthusiasm for the creativity of yarn and love for teaching to all her workshops. Her passion for fine arts and ability to speak several languages have helped her understand and relate to students of varying levels of expertise and have shaped her ability to create patterns that are both creative and classic designs. Simone’s design aesthetic is inspired by her love for nature and being outdoors. She loves to sew and hike (not at the same time, usually) and currently lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, baby daughter and lots of yarn.

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KyleKunnecke

Kyle Kunnecke

Seattle designer, author, and instructor Kyle Kunnecke is obsessed with stranded knitting and the technique of locked floats. Through his fiber workshops he provides inspiration to his students; exploring the skills necessary to continue their personal knitting journeys. His patterns are published in numerous knitting books and magazines, by yarn companies, and under his label, Kyle William. He leads virtual and in-person workshops at national and international events. His book, Urban Knit Collection: 18 City-Inspired Knitting Patterns for the Modern Wardrobe (Interweave, 2016) showcases projects that utilize the techniques he loves to share with his students. Learn more about Kyle and his work on his website.

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LaraNeel

Lara Neel

Lara is the author of Sock Architecture, a book to inspire the most awesome socks you ever knit. Design your own or enjoy the 17 patterns in the book. Choose your favorite toe, heel and direction of knitting (toe up or top down) and really have fun with your socks!

She is also the co-author of Crafting the Resistance, which came out in 2017.

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Photo of Jesie Ostermiller

Jesie Ostermiller

Jesie Ostermiller is an avid self-taught knitter and designer with a passion for colorwork. She is the author of The Colorwork Bible, a technique guide and pattern collection featuring multiple colorwork techniques. Her designs have been featured in many different publications and can be found on Ravelry. She was born and raised in Alaska and now lives in northern Utah with her husband and two boys, and her less-than-tidy yarn stash (which, if we’re being honest consists of hardly any full skeins, hundreds of partial skeins and a zillion small scraps because that’s what happens when you knit a lot of colorwork projects!)

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Laura Ricketts

Laura Ricketts lives and works in north central Indiana. A history teacher by day, she enjoys knitting, crocheting, spinning, and weaving whenever she can, incorporating history into her articles, patterns, and classes. You may see more of her work and upcoming classes on her website.

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Lisa Ross

Lisa K. Ross (aka Paper Daisy Creations) is a knitwear designer and mother of four boys living in Bloomington, Indiana. She believes that pairing the right yarn with the perfect technique can unlock something magical, and has made it her mission to find these combinations and share them with the world. Her process keeps the experience of the knitter in mind to ensure that the work that goes into a creation produces incredible results. When she is not knitting, Lisa can be found enjoying time with her family and listening to audiobooks while multi-tasking around the house.

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Ann Weaver

When she is not traveling to teach or exploring thrift stores and estate sales, you will find Ann in West Baltimore, where she works as a freelance editor and writer and runs Plied Yarns. Ann has been studying and applying color theory and fiber arts techniques for decades, beginning with a studio art degree and continuing through over 15 years of designing, writing, and teaching in the fiber industry. Knitting, mending, dyeing, sewing, and piecing—she uses all her skills to inspire her students in her laid-back workshops and presentations.

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Meg Duncan

Vice President

(Term 1, Year 1)

Meg grew up surrounded by makers. Her mom, a master quilter, former Home Ec teacher, and 4-H club leader in Duluth, taught her to sew, embroider, and cook. She won a trip to the State Fair as the Dress Review Princess at 13! Another MKG member taught her to knit continental style 15 years ago. Meg can’t sit still and NOT be knitting, embroidering, rug hooking or sewing. Favorite thing to knit? Mittens! She loves taking classes and learning new things – absolutely amazed and inspired by all the amazing knitters in the guild! (she, her, hers)

Jess Dahlberg

Newsletter Editor

Jess learned to knit in middle school and attempted (but never quite finished) a few garter stitch scarves. Years later, she picked up crochet with her best friend in law school and eventually fell back into knitting. Ever since then, she's been a daily knitter (commuting time for the win!) and has never looked back. She enjoys knitting gifts for friends and family and loves trying new techniques. (she, her, hers)

Laura Haave

Great Guild Getaway Committee Chair

Laura learned to knit in 2003 by taking a four-week class during MIT's annual January Independent Activities Period. The class project was a striped hat knit in the round, and since that time, Laura has been a big advocate of 1) helping other adults learn to knit for the first time, 2) hats as a manageable first project, and 3) circular needles for everything. She enjoys thinking about knitting and planning her next project almost as much as she enjoys actually knitting. Laura is highly motivated by knit-alongs and loves to knit in community. (she, her, hers)

Anne Rojas

Librarian

Anna Turk

Yarnover Committee Chair

While Anna learned to knit at some long-forgotten point in time, her commitment to the craft really began her freshman year of college. Sitting still has never been Anna’s strong suit, and giving her hands something to do while chatting with friends or watching movies in the dorm brought a sense of calm during this new chapter of her life. Once the sense of calm wore off (and no one else needed a scarf), she began trying new techniques, patterns, and projects, and until 2018 was primarily a self-taught knitter. After being intimidated early in her crafting, Anna feels strongly about creating a welcoming environment within the fiber community for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. She enjoys knitting and fiber traveling, test and service knitting, a good challenge (knitting or otherwise), and is likely to have at least 3 WIPs at any one time. She is also learning to spin and ply her own yarn! (she/her/hers)

Bonnie Swierzbin

Marketing Director

(Term 1, Year 1)

Bonnie comes from a long line of makers, so between their sewing and her own knitting, her Barbies had loads of one-of-a-kind dresses. She loves to buy yarn and knit while she travels, so she has a yarn stash the size of Cleveland and memories imbued with knitting; she can tell you exactly what baby sweater she was making on the overnight ferry from Rab to Split, Croatia, in 1985. When she isn't knitting, Bonnie is dyeing yarn and vintage textiles, embroidering, and making felt or silk paper vessels. She's happiest when she is learning a new skill or knitting technique. (she, her, hers)

Melissa Mintern

Technology Director

(Term 1, Year 1)

Melissa has been knitting for 15 years. She loves socks and sweaters. She is a new member who hopes to use her marketing background to lift up the MKG. While she isn't local to MN, she really loves the atmosphere created by the Guild. Melissa and significant other Al enjoy traveling, wherein Al graciously offers to drive so Melissa can knit in the passenger seat. (she, her, hers)

Nikky Heidel

Membership Director

(Term 1, Year 3)

Nikky was first introduced to knitting in 2012 when her visiting sister-in-law taught her the basics of casting on and the knit stitch. A few weeks later, she learned how to purl from her mother-in-law. From there, it quickly became a passion and she has taken on each new project with a desire to expand her skill and discover new techniques. She loves a good mystery (knit-a-long) and knits way more shawls than a single person can wear in a month.

Betsy Preston

Service Director

(Term 1, Year 2)

Betsy never had patience for knitting, until she found herself spending a lot of time at little league games and waiting for the last kid to emerge from the locker room after swim practice. With her background in graphic design, stranded colorwork has a natural appeal. Not to mention the practicality of an extra layer of warmth. Betsy has recently begun publishing her original hat and cowl patterns, which are available on Ravelry. (she, her, hers) (See our Service Knitting Page for more information about our current projects and donation process.)

Janet Ungs

Programming Director

(Term 1, Year 1)

Janet taught herself to knit from a small green and white paperback called “Learn to Knit” at the age of 10ish. Her first attempt at a cardigan, with some very heavyweight baby blue yarn, was done without checking gauge. As you can imagine, it was very large, but amazingly still lives in the closet of one of her younger sister‘s friends! To this day, she still struggles with doing a gauge swatch every time, although the journey of making the product is always fun! Janet loves to knit socks, sweaters, and hats, but blankets? Not so much. She likes color knitting as well as making cables. Lace? Not very good at that. (she, her, hers)

Rose Tobelmann

Treasurer

(Term 2, Year 1)

Rose learned to knit from her mother at the age of ten. She started knitting on the ends of small paint brushes. She continued to knit off and on through her teenage and young adult years and became a more avid knitter after taking a Norwegian sweater knitting class through community education. Today, knitting has become a passion and she knits for charity, herself, and her family her stash. She enjoys meeting other knitters and learning new techniques.

Kelsey Sorenson

Secretary

(Term 1, Year 3)

Kelsey learned the knit stitch from her grandmother in middle school, and filled in the gaps enough to make lots of scarves for quite a few years. She began expanding her skills in college and is always looking to learn more. Kelsey is drawn toward projects that are seamless or include stranded colorwork. (she, her, hers)

Kelly Amoth

President

(Term 1, Year 1)

A visiting friend from Seattle taught Kelly the very basics of knitting (a twisted loop cast on and just the knit stitch) in 2008 before flying home. Turning to the internet (thanks knittinghelp.com!) Kelly taught herself through a lot of trial and error. Uncontent to keep knitting the scarf she’d started as her first project, she jumped into knitting a pair of striped mittens for her non-knitter, but very knitworthy, twin sister. Twelve years later the mittens are still in her sister’s glove box, and Kelly is usually horrified when she pulls them out and sees the mistakes she made using double pointed needles for the first time. Kelly loves knitting socks and is thankful for the many months of cold weather when she gets to exclusively wear her handknits. (she, her, hers)

Kathy Lewinski

Webmaster

Kathy has always been into crafts, but didn’t teach herself to knit until after college. She really got hooked while living in San Francisco when a friend opened a knitting store. To pitch in, Kathy started knitting up fun (and odd) things for window displays, as well as teaching classes. In the last couple of years, she has started designing her own knitting patterns (many of them available for free on Ravelry!) with toys and mittens being her primary obsessions. (she/her/hers)