I started turning wood in 2008, and my collection of hand-planes has been largely neglected ever since. As much as I love experiencing that rush of discovery when cutting into a log destined for a local woodstove’s battle against the Vermont cold and seeing what grain patterns are hiding inside, or peeling away the excess wood at the lathe to reveal a beautiful form, I also enjoy seeing it in the faces of others as they remove their first completed bowl from the lathe.
In my own pieces I especially like working with spalted woods - the patterns and colors that develop naturally as the wood begins to decay are well worth the added challenges the material presents.
I have been excited about wood since I started exploring wood as a teen in California and in the Alaska wilderness, carving bowls and small expressive pieces. In my 20s I started teaching woodcraft in northern Vermont to adults and to children in a rural public elementary school. At that time I was moved to write about woodcraft as a vehicle for children in developing their creativity and self-empowerment.
Later I designed and built several saunas, a sailing dory and started sculpting furniture pieces including driftwood lamps, mirrors and chairs.
Recently I've been bringing my spoon and ladle carving workshop in a small caravan style studio wagon I built, out into the community. I have taught these workshops in the Alaskan wilderness, at Snowfarm Craft- Art School and will be teaching at the Carving Studio this spring in Rutland.
Using freshly harvested green wood and a variety of traditional hand-tools, I make asymmetrical spoons and other kitchen utensils, bowls, milking stools and woodland work benches, shaving horses, chopping blocks, mallets, tool handles, and other useful objects from material culture. After my introduction to green woodworking 25 years ago as a Goddard College student, I remain deeply in love with the process, experimenting, improvising, sharing and expanding the joy of spoon carving with others I meet along the way while instructing, "spoon busking" in Montpelier, and blogging on the topic at www.spoonderlust.com "
AnnMarie is a mostly self-taught crafter who has worked in many media. A children’s book editor and writer, she moved to Vermont from Brooklyn in 2021. For many years, she sewed and sold sock monkeys for a small NYC-based nonprofit that organized fine art and craft exhibitions and workshops for underserved artists, including seniors, those in recovery, and the unhoused. She also once organized a community art project for kids that involved weaving on old CDs with recycled yarn.
These days she experiments with needle and wet felting, knits, and weaves a bit. She is excited to join the fiber community at the Craft School, where she aims to learn as much as share her skills. She lives in Shelburne with her two kids, one husband, and a very old cat.
Ashley began her weaving journey in Scotland in 2018 learning how to weave Harris Tweed on a Hattersley loom. She then began to create highly textured woven wall hangings from all natural and eco friendly fibers while incorporating other fiber art techniques, like macrame and embroidery. Each piece is designed to preserve ancient ancestral craft and inspire inner healing and growth. Ashley creates in unison with nature by foraging for materials for natural dyes and paint pigments.
-After graduating from University of Vermont with a BFA in Art Barbara became a studio potter, selling work in galleries and at craft fairs. In 1978, she became the resident potter at the Craft School, managing the studio and teaching classes. Changing course in 1987, she opened a picture framing business in her home in Shelburne. The love of clay frequently brought her back to the Craft School as a volunteer, sharing knowledge and skills. She is now the instructor of the Independent Clay class.
Chris Ramos immersed himself in furniture making as an early student of the Vermont Woodworking School, studying under the prolific Bob Fletcher and other prominent Vermont craftspeople. Now working out of the Shelburne Craft School, Chris and his partner, Ryan Cocina design and build custom residential and commercial furnishings under the brand, Seral Designs. He returns regularly to VWS to teach introductory woodworking and is a resident instructor at the Shelburne Craft School. Chris is honored to share his method through community education, and his vision through his labor. SeralDesigns.com
Claire has been a lifelong Maker. She studied studio art in Ontario, Canada and has a degree in art photography and painting. She came to quilt making when her children were young, making her own clothes while teaching herself to sew on a treadle machine. Early on she began quilt demonstrating at the Shelburne Museum and developed a fondness for antique quilts. Through teaching her kids to sew and quilt, Claire developed classes for children in the homeschool community and taught adult workshops. She branched out to art quilting, incorporating unusual fabrics, clothing and many embellishments. As the modern quilt movement took hold, she found connection to a simpler aesthetic. It aligned with her intuitive approach to art making. She has many pieces which include both handwork and machines. She has served on the board of Champlain Valley Quilters Guild for the last four years.
Vermont Modern Quilt Guild
Studio Art Quilters Associates Surface Design Associates
Artist in Residence co-op gallery St Albans
Claire always has hand work projects on the go. Travel or movie watching, she lives by the ‘no idle hands’ philosophy.
Claire has made her home in Burlington for thirty years.
I have often said that my greatest strength as an artist is my very low standards! I love learning new things, and the best way I have found is to get comfortable with being bad at them. My lack of focus means that whenever I have the opportunity to try something new, I jump at the chance, and I am always excited to pass on whatever I have learned! I have been making art in all kinds of media for most of my life. After growing up in Washington, DC, I moved here and graduated from the University of Vermont in 2013 with degrees in Studio Art and Classical Civilizations. I have worked in clay, paint, charcoal, ink, glass, fiber, wood, watercolor, and anything else I can think of! I work as a baker and, occasionally, as a yoga teacher and live in South Burlington with my spouse, our cats, and arguably too many plants.