Special Guests

Carla Scott

Carla Scott is a leading industry expert in knitting and crochet and President of McKnits International Inc. A knitter since age 7, Carla is the former Editor in Chief of Vogue Knitting, and Knit Simple magazines, both published by Soho Publishing Co. She has been working with Vogue Knitting magazine since 1982 and has enjoyed hosting the VK International Tours and teaching workshops at VKLive events and knitting guilds around the country. She created and edited the Vogue Knitting "Stitchionary" series and is closely involved in the various knitting books published by Soho, including the revised "The Ultimate Knitting Book". Her career in the hand-knitting industry spans over 35 years, working for various yarn companies, knitting magazine and book publishers. Carla resides in New York City.

Fiona Nadjer

Fiona Nadjer was born and bred in the Kingdom of Fife and has lived in Sanquhar for over forty years. She cannot remember not being able to knit, and made her first jumper for herself at the age of six.

When Fiona came to Upper Nithsdale she discovered Sanquhar gloves. Not being one to shy away from a challenge, Fiona knitted her first pair, which she still has. Since then, countless more pairs have followed. Latterly, since her involvement in A’ the Airts, she has become the key glove knitting demonstrator for the Centre’s popular Sanquhar knitting tours.

Di Gilpin

Di Gilpin is the founder and creative director of Di Gilpin Ltd, the hand-knit design studio which has been based in Scotland for more than 38 years.
Di Gilpin studied history and politics at university and started work as a teacher. In 1983, she took a year-off to travel, and arrived on the Isle of Skye with little more than a rucksack containing a tent, wool and knitting needles. Inspired by the nature, landscape, sea and people around her, she developed her knitting expertise, experimenting with different processes, styles and stitches. With her business growing, she moved to Fife and established Di Gilpin Ltd.

Di works with many Fashion designers to push the tradition of Hand knit in new creative directions. She reconstructs and challenges convention in the tradition of knit and creates couture pieces with precision and care. At the core of her work is the love of Gansey knitting and its unique construction techniques which she recreates to enable a perfect fit!

Her internationally renowned brand involves collaborations with designers including Graeme Black, Paul Smith, La Fetiche and Connolly England. She is an advocate for slow fashion, ethical production and realizing concepts and collections for designers. With her partner, Sheila Greenwell, she has created her own range of yarns, collections of designs and written The Gansey Knitting Source Book. Di and Sheila also worked closely on 2 major Gansey projects in Scotland: The Moray Firth Gansey Project and Knitting the Herring. From DI's beautiful studio, showroom and teaching room at Comielaw Farm on the Balcaskie Estate, workshops and classes are offered on a wide range of hand knitting disciplines. Education is very much at the heart of Di and Sheila's work.

Di and Sheila recently worked on a project with the Ettedgui Foundation and the Prince’s Foundation to create a Knitting Library at Dumfries House in Scotland. They also created a skills based archive for the project featuring Shetland Lace, Gansey, Sanquhar, Cable, Intarsia and Fair Isle knitting.

Michele Lee Bernstein

Michele Lee Bernstein, PDXKnitterati, loves designing accessories, especially if they use one or two skeins of very special yarn. She's fond of texture (brioche, lace, entrelac, elongated stitches) and how interesting techniques can be used to make small objects sing; her patterns are available through Ravelry.com. She loves teaching knitters to be the boss of their knitting, and does so at local yarn shops in Oregon, fiber festivals, and guild retreats. Find her on Instagram, Facebook, Ravelry, and Twitter as PDXKnitterati.

Ana Campos

Ana Campos was born in São Paulo, Brazil, and now makes her home in the Witch City (Salem, Massachusetts). She is a founding member of Vogue Knitting's Diversity Advisory Council and is committed to increasing equity and access in the fiber world. Ana brings more than 20 years of knitting experience to her yarn shop, Circle of Stitches, and to her workshops, which she teaches across the U.S.. As a teacher, her focus is on the technical aspects of knitting, and she strives to empower her students to create pieces they love.

Anneli Belsvik Aras

Anneli has a Master’s degree in specialized art (ceramics and print) and a 1-year study of art history. She has a long experience as an arts and crafts teacher at high school level. She designed a shawl for Bergen Knitting festival in 2018, and also works as a curator for the gallery space at the museum. 

Siri Angela Gamborg

Siri has a Bachelor’s degree of music and craft and holds a Master’s degree in art history. She has worked as teacher for many years. She is the regular designer of knitting kits for the museum as well as co-author of the museum’s own book of traditional knitting patterns (to be translated to English in 2020).

Andrea Mowry

Andrea is one of the many who was lucky enough to learn how to knit as a child from her grandma. After leaving her life as a pastry chef to start a family with her husband, her hands found the necessary freedom to begin creating with fiber instead of flour. She focuses on designing knits to fit the modern wardrobe – fun to knit and easy to wear, with clear directions for every level of knitter. She believes in enjoying every stitch and wearing at least one hand knit everyday! Andrea has a great love for indulging in new techniques and skills and then sharing them with other knitters thru her patterns and workshops. Her goal is to leave knitters feeling empowered and inspired, and wrapped up in their own beautiful knits! You can find her everywhere as DreaReneeknits!

 Andrea is a guest speaker at our first port stop in Portland NE on our Cruise to Canada & New England

Mary Jane Mucklestone

Mary Jane Mucklestone is a knitwear designer and author of 4 books specializing in colorwork knitting. With an extensive background in art and textiles she travels the world to learn traditional knitting techniques, recently completing an artist residency in Fair Isle, the namesake place of stranded knitting. Her book 200 Fair Isle Motifs and 150 Scandinavian Motifs have both been translated into multiple languages and are distributed around the world. Mary Jane has called Maine her home for over 30 years and loves that knitted garments are needed year round.

Mary Jane is a guest speaker at our first port stop in Portland NE on Cruise to Canada & New England

Bristol Ivy

Bristol Ivy is a knitting designer, teacher, and author from Portland, Maine. Her work has been published with PomPom Magazine, amirisu, Quince & Co., Making Magazine, and her own eponymous pattern line. She has taught at such events as Squam Art Workshops, Edinburgh Yarn Festival, and Vogue Knitting Live, as well as yarn shops worldwide. Her recent book, Knitting Outside the Box with PomPom Press, explores her lifelong commitment to breaking rules and finding beauty in unexpected places. Her latest book, Knitting Outside the Box: Drape and Fold with PomPom Press, is out in October 2019. When not knitting, she’s sewing, running, watching far too many British murder mysteries, and baking a mean loaf of oatmeal honey bread. Find her online at bristolivy.com and on Instagram and Twitter as @bristolivy.

Bristol is a guest speaker at our first port stop in Portland NE on Cruise to Canada & New England

Laura Zander

Laura Zander is the co-owner of market-leading yarn retailer Jimmy Beans Wool. Laura and her husband, Doug, worked as software engineers during the dot-com era in the San Francisco Bay Area. When they saw the dot-com boom turning to a bust, the couple decided to leave their jobs, move to their second home in the Lake Tahoe area, and begin a new adventure by opening Jimmy Beans Wool.

They started the business, which has been named to the Inc.5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in the U.S. list four times, with a $30,000 personal investment and have since grown it debt free into a booming operation. Laura is one of Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women and was invited to the White House for a forum addressing the American Jobs Act, where Jimmy Beans Wool was recognized as a notable Nevada Business. Known as an innovator in the Needlearts industry, Laura has created successful national high-profile campaigns including Stitch Red, Stitch Mountain, and Beans for Brains, which in turn focus on heart disease awareness, winter sports with a tie-in to Olympic athletes, and supporting access to higher education. Laura authored and launched her first installment of a three-book series drawing awareness to heart ,disease, Knit Red, in 2012.

In 2018, Laura introduced Namaste into the Jimmy Beans family and breathed new life into a popular brand by modernizing the shapes and styles to make fashionable maker-specific bags and cases. Along with Namaste, Laura was also handed the torch in mid-2019 to become the new owner of della Q, a separate line of handmade notions for makers. Most recently, Laura has taken the reins of Madelinetosh, a well-beloved brand and the largest hand-dyed yarn producer in the USA, rounding out Jimmy Beans’ roster of of diverse brands. When not knitting or working, Laura spends most of her time, hiking with her dogs on the trail behind their house and playing with their son, Huck.

Laura is a guest traveling on our trip through India

Franklin Habit

Designer, teacher, writer, and illustrator Franklin Habit is the author of I Dream of Yarn (Sixth&Spring Books), It Itches: A Stash of Knitting Cartoons (Interweave Press, 2008) and proprietor of The Panopticon (the-panopticon.blogspot.com), one of the most popular knitting blogs on the Internet. On an average day, upward of 2,500 readers worldwide drop in for a mix of essays, cartoons, and the continuing adventures of Dolores the Sheep.

Franklin’s varied experience in the fiber world includes contributions of writing and design to Vogue Knitting, Interweave Knits, Interweave Crochet, PieceWork, Twist Collective; and a regular columns and cartoons for Knitty.com, Ply magazine, Skacel Yarns (Fridays with Franklin), and Lion Brand Yarns. Several of his independently published designs are available via Ravelry.com.

He travels constantly to teach knitters at shops and guilds across the country and internationally, and he has been a popular member of the faculties of such festivals as Vogue Knitting LIVE!, Stitches Midwest and East, and the Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat.
Franklin is teaching an on-board class on the NCL Breakaway cruise

On Board Class by Franklin Habit:
The Joy (No, Seriously) of Intarsia

Intarsia is a bold, powerful technique with a severe image problem. Some say it’s ugly. Others say it’s complicated. We disagree. When practiced properly and used with skill, intarsia is capable of creating fresh and beautiful multi-color fabrics unlike anything else in knitting. And it’s fun. In this eye- and mind-opening introductory session, we’ll learn and practice the fundamentals; and then begin to explore the possibilities that lie in playing with color, texture, fiber; and in designing your own charts. Duration: 3 hours.

Prerequisites: Students must be fully fluent in the basics of knitting (casting on, knit and purl, shaping, etc.) and willing to work from charts.

Supplies: Two balls of smooth, even worsted weight yarn (for example: Universal Yarns Deluxe Worsted, Hikoo Simpliworsted, Plymouth Yarn Encore Worsted, Red Heart Chic Sheep Merino Worsted), each in a different solid or semi-solid color. Needles (straight or circular) to give you a nice, firm gauge using your choice of yarn. Pencil with eraser, scissors, tapestry needle. Materials for note-taking are strongly encouraged.

Dr. Priya Shashank

Dr. Priya Shashank is a physician and an IBCLC by profession, working with new parents, helping to empower them to breastfeed. She is passionate about knitting and crochet and has 30 years of experience practicing and teaching the crafts. She is associated with prestigious yarn and knitting needle making companies and works with them as a knitting and social media expert. Being married to an army officer, she moves a lot, and has tried to make knitting groups in every place that she has been to. She is a well known name among Ravellers in India, and has made many friends worldwide owing to her love for fibrecrafts. She loves meeting new people and is always looking to learn new things!

Dr. Priya Shashank is one of the guest knitters teaching a class on the India tour

Dr. Priya Shashank’s class: “Make your own stitch markers”.

As for materials required for my activity, the participants would each be using the following: 

  1. Jump Rings - 6mm, 12mm - about a dozen each
  2. Tiger tail - 1 roll
  3. Jewellery pliers - 1 pair 
  4. Miyuki beads
  5. Assorted Glass beads
  6. Crimp beads
  7. A pair of scissors

The participants would require to bring their own jewelry making tools, like pliers and scissors. I would provide the beads, tiger tail, jump rings, crimp beads etc

Dr Shruti Sharma

Dr Shruti Sharma, a practicing Sr Ophthalmologist in Delhi. Learnt knitting in class 2 and learnt crochet in class 7. It was just basics. Life had been hectic till I was on family way, and then I picked up knitting needles, and a close family friend introduced me to written patterns – in English. All I knew was knit and purl. Slowly learnt other stiches and shaping of a garment. THEN internet happened, made friends on Raverly.com and was introduced to patterns and tutorials on YouTube, to knitting magazines and books. And all that was addicting. Slowly learnt new techniques, and still keep looking for more to learn. Also love to make Madubani paintings, wheel work as in clay work, and just love to spend time on my terrace garden too, growing 6 varieties of basil, tomatoes, herbs and more.

Dr Shruti Sharma is one of the guest knitters teaching a class on the India tour

Dr. Shruti Sharma’s class:  Steeking and Colour work workshop. 

Materials required for her workshop: Circular knitting needles, preferably 3.5 mm in 16" length and yarn in two contrasting colors. Sports weight yarn would be good, but not necessary.

Prerequisites:  If knitters have about 100 stitches casted on and rib knitting done for about 1/2 inch in the round will be appreciated.

Norah Gaughan

Raised by artists in the Hudson Valley, Norah’s father, Jack Gaughan, was a well known science fiction illustrator in his day while her mother Phoebe Gaughan illustrated how-to books and magazines in the home and crafts fields. While immersed in both art and the needle arts from an early age, she also maintained an intense curiosity about science and the natural world going on to earn a degree in Biology / Art from Brown University. During the years that followed she concentrated on her greatest love, knitting. First as a freelancer for yarn companies and knitting magazines; then as the design director at JCA, followed by a nine year stint as the  design director at Berroco where she headed up the design team and published sixteen eponymous booklets. Norah’s upbringing, schooling and experience coalesce in her three hardcover volumes Knitting Nature, Norah Gaughan’s Knitted Cable Sourcebook and Norah Gaughan’s Twisted Stitch Sourcebook. As an independent designer working out of her studio in historic Harrisville NH, ventures include designing as a team member with Brooklyn Tweed, designing collections for Quince and Co, The Fibre Co and Wool Studio as well as collaborations with the magazines, Making and PomPom. Now the Editor in Chief of Vogue Knitting, Norah continues to design and teach whenever and where ever she can.

Follow Norah on Instagram:  Norahgn and on her website.

Knit Fold Pleat Repeat: Pyramids, Pleats and Smocking
Course Description: Learn the origami inspired techniques of knitting tucks, fun easy smocking and 3-D embellishments. Norah’s newest book uses these knitterly techniques to shape and add interest to easy square and rectangular shapes. The class project will be suitable for all levels of experience. Learn some fun skills used to make sophisticated garments from simple shapes.

Supplies students need to bring with them: 2, 50 gr balls of dk weight yarn, light colors highly suggested. Straight or circular needles to match yarn. Set of 5 double pointed needles size to match yarn.

Scissors, tapestry needle, markers

*as new dates and tours become available, instructors may change