Our Teachers

Coming soon

Suzi Ballenger, Weaving
Suzi Ballenger received her MFA from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth and has worked in New England as a weaver and teaching artist since 1996. She has invented and trademarked specialized tools for weaving. Suzi’s love of thread and fiber informs her research in weaving and hand-paper making and was supported by workshops at the Honolulu Museum of Art, Hawaii, and an internship at Dieu Donné Paper Studio in Brooklyn, New York. She currently serves as the President of the Board of Directors for the Handweavers Guild of America, an organization of more than 3,500 members.
[email protected] / https://www.realfibers.com/rf/about/

Joan Bartram, Tapestry Weaving
Joan Bartram has been weaving on and off since Santa Claus brought her a “real loom” when she was ten. Since then she has studied textiles at the University of Rhode Island and a Norwegian Folk High School and attended workshops at Penland and Arrowmont Craft Schools. Her primary tapestry teachers were Archie Brennan and Susan Martin Maffai. Joan has a Certificate in Drawing and Painting from RISD/CE. Joan’s work is on Instagram @ joangreenbart.

Alyn Carlson, Paper Flowers
Alyn Carlson is a New England-based painter, author, graphic designer, performer, and paper artist. In the past four decades, she has been a street performer in California, renovated a church into a home and been the artistic producer for three theater companies. She also writes a blog called Colorgirl. Her art and designs have been featured in numerous blogs and published in magazines such as Uppercase, Print, Redbook, Communications Arts, Photo District News and RI Monthly. Her paintings are featured in Deborah Forman’s Paint Lab and Grace Bonney’s Design Sponge at Home. Her book, The Paper Hat Book, a how-to book for adults and children, feature her designs made from recycled materials and ephemera.

Carol DesForges, Mah Jongg
Carol Desforges is a retired high school science teacher who loves to play Mah Jongg. She has been teaching Mah Jongg at senior centers, local social centers and in pivate homes since 2007. Carol runs Mah Jonng tournaments and started teaching at the Handicraft Club in 2022.

Caryl Freedman , Needlepoint
Caryl Freedman taught herself to needlepoint as a young child. She has enjoyed a lifelong passion for needlepoint and is accomplished in numerous needlework disciplines. Caryl is a member of The American Needlepoint Guild, the Embroiders’ Guild of America, and The National Academy of Needlearts. She holds a B.A. in Studio Art and Communications and an M.A. in Media Studies, both from RI College. She began teaching needlepoint at The Handicraft Club in 2003. Her goal is to provide excellence in needlework education. Caryl’s professional background, as a corporate art consultant, adds to her expertise. Her “Needlepoint School,” established over a decade ago, provides needlepoint instruction to students at all levels of proficiency. Outside of The Handicraft Club, Caryl is a veteran URI Master Gardener, enjoys boating, photography and travel.
(401) 885-0034 / [email protected]

Karen Graves, Decorative Painting
Karen Graves has been a member of the Historical Society of Early American Decoration for 27 years. Karen has received awards in country painting, bronze powder stencilling on tin and wood and theorem painting. In addition to the techniques outlined above, Karen teaches gold leaf applications, country tin, bronze powder stencilling, reverse glass, brides boxes, floorcloths, pen and ink, fracturs, primitive painting, graining techniques, scherenschnitte, and illuminated letters. She has served as Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Corresponding Secretary, and Trustee of her chapter, Nashoba Valley. Currently Karen serves as a judge for theorem painting for HSEAD. She has taught at Sturbridge Village, chapter meetings, HSEAD meetings, and at the Handicraft Club since 2013.
(401) 474-7214 / [email protected]

Anne Huntington, Off Loom Weaving/Baskets
I’ve been weaving for 35 years. I most often weave on a traditional 8 harness treadle style floor loom, and I’m also experienced with “off-loom” techniques including card or tablet weaving, inkle loom weaving, and tapestry weaving on a frame loom. Most people know my work from Po Gallery in Providence which I founded and directed for 27 years before closing in 2014. In addition to exhibiting wonderful works of art and fine craft by RI artists, the gallery also served as my studio where I was able to weave, display my work, and give countless demonstrations to anyone curious about the process.

[email protected] / https://www.pogalleryri.com

Kate Huntington, Portraits
Kate Huntington has been working as a representational painter since the 70’s after attending RISD. Her work is now shown in and about New England in galleries and museums and featured in books, movies and TV shows. Her paintings and drawings are found in numerous national and international private and corporate collections. In 1992, she started hosting a weekly open portrait painting group that is still very popular today. Besides getting to explore new ideas and techniques of her own, Kate has developed a keen eye as to producing a solid portrait as well as a good likeness.
[email protected]

Dana Lane, Soapmaking
Dana Lane is the owner of The Matter Shoppe (www.themattershoppe.com), an online emporium of sustainable products for home and personal care that are curated for their understated elegance, reusability, and commitment to zero-waste. The ingredients in Dana’s soaps include aloe, lemongrass, coconut milk, pumpkin spice, and tea tree charcoal.
[email protected]

Kathrine Lovell , White Line Printing
Kathrine Lovell, who has a BFA in Painting from RISD, was born in Australia, raised primarily in New Jersey, and has been a Rhode Island resident for many years. She comes from a self-described family of artists and entrepreneurs going back centuries, including cathedral stone cutters in England, graphic designers who helped re-brand popular products after World War II, and fashion clothiers. As a painter, Kathrine has worked in oils as well as watercolors, but the body of her work is in acrylics using Birch plywood as a canvas. Reproductions of many of her designs have been sold in such companies as Kohl’s, Homegoods, and Trader Joe’s. Kathrine Lovell has taught at The Handicraft Club since 2019.
(401) 743-6077 / [email protected]

Virginia Mead, Decoupage
Virginia Mead has been a Member of the Handicraft Club since 1973, and an instructor since the mid ‘90s. She has taught sewing, knitting and needlepoint and currently teaches decoupage. She serves on the board of several medically related and senior service community groups as a treasurer. Virginia often says, “I have many PHDs-projects half done.” Her education started at Brown, Pembroke, then she moved onto Columbia. She received a Bachelor of Science and a Nursing degree from Presbyterian Hospital. She then became an instructor of nursing. She is a Certified Orton Gillingham tutor and a Master Seamstress through the University of RI Extension School. She loves reading and mysteries in her spare time.
[email protected]

Kay Mehls, Knitting
Katherine is a knitting instructor and knitwear designer. Her designs have been published by Vogue Knitting, Knit Simple and Noro magazines, as well as Knitting Fever Inc., Quince & Co., and Soho Publishing. She has taught at Northlight Fibers, Block Island, The Peacedale Guild, and at the Handicraft Club since (insert start date here!).
Website: https://www.ravelry.com/designers/katherine-mehls
215-5902 / [email protected]

Torin Richards, Jewelry
Torin’s love of traditional metalsmithing in silver & gold and her days designing costume jewelry have lead to a fabulous freedom of expression.
Torin’s jewelry exudes a youthful spirit, her exuberant hue of color, & symbols allows the wearer to tap into their own sense of wonder and whimsy. Antique & vintage glass beads & bits from around the world, highlighting their vibrant opaque color & craftsmanship to create wearable rainbows. Elements are hand-made in Sterling silver, Gold and 14kt gold fill by Torin in her PVD home studio. [email protected]

Inspiration comes from nature, sky, rainbows, ocean,
birds, wings, hands
symbols of hope, strength & light.

Liz Roessler, Calligraphy
Liz Roessler is a self-taught, professional calligrapher based in Boston with over 30 years client experience. Her hand lettering has been commissioned for countless weddings, parties, corporate celebrations, fundraisers, and unique gifts. Over the past decade, she has enjoyed “sharing the lettering love” by teaching 100’s of in-person & virtual classes to individuals, families, social groups, companies for their employees & clients, at museums (including the MFA & ICA), and in classrooms (including Boston & Brookline Public Schools) & at colleges (including Northeastern & Boston University).
(617) 697-3011 / [email protected]

Caroline Silverman, Embroidery and Quilting
Caroline Silverman is an artist and writer who works at the intersection of annotation, object, and context. Born in Newburyport, MA, she earned her BFA in Textiles from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2018, with dual Concentrations in Literary Arts Studies, and Gender, Race, and Sexuality. Her work has been exhibited at the Burroughs & Chapin Museum, Myrtle Beach, SC (2014), Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI (2017, 2018), Emily Harvey Gallery, Venice, Italy (2017), Dedee Shattuck Gallery, Westport, MA (2018), Mana Contemporary, Jersey City, NJ (2019, 2020), and the RISD Museum (2021) amongst others. Her work has also been published in A Form of Perpetual Caress (2020), Margin of Error (forthcoming, 2022), and Quiltfolk (forthcoming, 2023). Caroline currently maintains a multidisciplinary studio practice in Brooklyn, NY, and teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, RI.
[email protected]

Ida Schmulowitz, Painting
Ida Schmulowitz has been a professional artist for over 45 years, and holds a BFA in painting from RISD. She has exhibited her work locally and nationally and her work is in corporate and private collections including the RISD Museum and the Newport Art Museum. Ida enjoys challenging returning students and beginners with ideas from her education at RISD pushing them outside their comfort zone. Her main body of work is a series of 6’x8’ oil landscapes painted outside from a particular spot in Providence. She is also a certified Snake Style Tai Chi instructor.
272-9712 / [email protected]

Alice Tingley, Beginning Kintsugi
Alice started her work with furniture at Sotheby, Parke, Bernet in New York where she learned French Polishing, Japanning and Chinese Lacquer techniques.Later Alice apprenticed with Master Gilder, Nils Johnson in his Boston studio. It was here that she studied the art of gold leaf (both water and oil gilding) frame restoration. She has been restoring art objects for more than 20 years.In addition to furthering her fine arts and art history degree, she has taken advantage of many continuing education classes such as retail ceramic painting in Winchester, MA, water gilding at the Eliot School in Jamaica Plain, MA, tray painting at the Handicraft Club in Providence, RI and further training with the Society of Gilders.Alice has numerous clients in the New England area such as Blithewold Mansion and Gardens, St. Stephens Episcopal Church, Grace Episcopal Church, Leonard’s Antiques, Alan Renier Interiors and numerous private individuals (see CD contents). Her restoration work has ranged from period frames, mirrors, tables and chairs to antique Chinese Lacquer.Alice has been a member of the Providence Art Club for more than 15 years and is an Artist Professional Member. She has taught many courses on gilding and restoration.
[email protected]

Cynthia Treen, Felted Animals
[email protected]

Anne Wert, Watercolor and Painting
Anne P. Wert is an artist, educator, volunteer, and mother. She studied studio art at Parsons School of Design in Paris, has a degree in Sociology and Education from the University of Richmond, and a certificate in Children’s Book Illustration from RISD. Anne’s fine art work is influenced by her time living in Asia and Europe, and focuses on landscapes. She works in both oil and watercolor and her recent work is inspired by living in New England. In addition to being an Artist member at the Providence Art Club, the Rhode Island Watercolor Society, and the Art League of Rhode Island, Anne’s paintings and illustrations have been shown and juried into galleries around New England. She is currently a teacher at the Providence Art Club and the Hamilton House.
[email protected]

Dana Lane
Dana Lane is the owner of The Matter Shoppe (www.themattershoppe.com), an online emporium of sustainable products for home and personal care that are curated for their understated elegance, reusability, and commitment to zero-waste. The ingredients in Dana’s soaps include aloe, lemongrass, coconut milk, pumpkin spice, and tea tree charcoal.

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