Meet Interweave Yarn Fest’s Instructors

Instructor Spotlight

Fiber artists, next month is THE month. Interweave Yarn Fest kicks off on March 30, and you better believe we are counting down the days—maybe even the seconds—until it finally arrives.
If you’ve never been part of a large-scale fiber arts experience, you might be curious as to why it’s so special. The answer is simple. The feeling of being surrounded by hundreds of people from across the nation who all share the same passion is a magical one. Everyone at Interweave Yarn Fest, young and old, are inspired to be there because they love the fiber arts and they want to celebrate their craft.

Thanks to our lineup of incredibly talented instructors, fiber artists of all skill levels can build up their creative confidence and own their technique in a variety of workshops. Dreams are fulfilled at Interweave Yarn Fest, and today, we are sharing encouraging words from a few of the inspirational instructors teaching at this year’s event.

We’re loving this quote:

Internationally famous fiber artist, Lily M. Chin, gave us this wonderfully true and funny quote. Imagine if everyone channeled their negative energy into something productive, like an art form. The next time you’re feeling stressed, overwhelmed or downright angry, pick up that fiber project! You’ll be amazed by how it can turn your mood around.


Get inspired by the words of our wonderful instructors. 


Stephanie Gaustad 

Specialty: Spinning, weaving, dyeing, knitting


Out of all the fiber arts creations you’ve made, which one is your favorite and why is it your favorite?

A handspun, hand-woven Croatian Shirt. It is a kind textile that shows my skills.

How long have you been a fiber arts fanatic and what sparked your passion for the craft?

I started knitting at age 6 and got my first sewing machine at age 9. The possibilities of producing useful things was mind boggling!

Are you currently working on any projects?

My current project is a hand-spun, hand knit sweater/shawl. Also, have a scarf on the loom.


Workshop PickProductive Spinning (6 hours)

Maggie Casey 

Specialty: Spinning, knitting and weaving.


Out of all the fiber art creations you’ve made, which one is your favorite and why is it your favorite?

A pair of Fair Isle mittens spun on a drop spindle. I wore them for years.

What is the best advice you’ve received from a fellow fiber artist?

To finish a project. How else are you going to know if you spun the best yarn for it?

How long have you been involved in the fiber arts?

Learned to knit in college and learned to spin and weave about 10 years later.

Workshop PickStart Spinning (6 hours)



Deborah Jarchow

Specialty: Weaving, knitting and crochet


What will students gain short and long term from taking your workshops?

One of the things I love for students to learn is that most “mistakes” are really learning opportunities.  There are many easy ways to fix things on the loom and I love to share that knowledge.  I get very excited when students walk away from class with new confidence and then send me images of what they’ve created at home based on their classroom experience.

Out of all the fiber arts creations you’ve made, which one is your favorite and why is it your favorite?

Over the years I’ve woven several wall installation pieces, but I think my favorite is one of my first ones, Cascade.  It’s a very big piece that consists of three woven panels ranging in size from 27′ long to 10′ long.  Each piece is about 25″ wide.  There were made on a floor loom, all on the same 20 yard long warp, but with different colors of weft.  The color changes are based on the Fibonacci formula so it is subliminally pleasing.  After this piece was first exhibited, a church contacted me to see if I’d be interested in making banners for the wall behind their altar.  That started me on the path of weaving many liturgical commissions.

What are you most excited about for Yarn Fest 2017?

Interacting with the attendees and other teachers.  It’s always so much fun to see what people are working on and interested in doing.

Workshop PickDishtowels on the Rigid Heddle Loom (6 hours)


This year’s Interweave Yarn Fest is set to be a blast! We have lots of fun activities lined up, including a Saturday Night Fashion Show where you can flaunt your fiber art on the runway! Give your creative passion some attention, and register for the workshops you’ve been eyeing. They won’t be around for long, so reserve your seat today, and we’ll see you in March!

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