Sharon Babbitt discovered her passion for knitting a few years ago, while on a weekend trip with a friend who happened to be knitting two scarves. Intrigued by the colors and textures of the yarns. Sharon soon immersed herself in knitting classes and projects.
An award winning commercial and portrait photographer for the past 22 years, Sharon finds her eye for detail and composition from still photography carries over to her knitting projects. She feels the pleasure of seeing the finished work from the hanks of yarn is much like seeing the image come to life in the darkroom when you print a photograph.
Sharon’s husband, Andy Dearwater is a graphic designer. They have two teenage boys and an assortment of pets including 2 dogs, 3 cats, a dove and a corn snake.
Angie is half Cajun French and half German and grew up in Acadiana (Southwest Louisiana). She says making handmade items and teaching others how to make them is what keeps her sane, grounded and focused. Handwork has been passed down in her family for generations. Her mother taught her how to embroider at the age of five, and she’s been creating handmade items ever since. Her mother also taught her to crochet when she was 8 years old.
Angie has a wide range of skills: tatting, knitting, crochet, embroidery, needlepoint, sewing, hand quilting, smocking, beadweaving and jewelry making. She has even won ribbons at county fairs for her quilts.
Rose Graham’s first knitting teachers were her mother and grandmother, and she has learned from all the knitters and weavers, dyers and feltmakers she has known. Among her current teachers are the students whose questions puzzle her and whose friendship she treasures.
She has learned historical and ethnic techniques from Tilly Marchwinski, Linda Romens, Melissa Leapman and Sally Melville. With Anita Mayer and Valentina Devine she has studied creative freeform knitting and with Judy Dercum and Candace Eisner Strick fine finishing and precise techniques. Katherine Cobey’s artistry inspires her; Brandon Mably’s colors give her new eyes.
Virginia Martinez, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother (of Trinity and Ella) learned to crochet from an Aunt in Victoria, Texas, many, many years ago. She was taught to crochet not by a written pattern but by looking at another crocheted piece at the age of seven years old. In later years she taught herself to crochet from written patterns. Most recent classes she has taken are with Lilly Chin and Robyn Chachula.
Virginia is very patient in her teaching of the basics of crochet.
She is looking forward to crocheting with Houston`s very own published designer and famed Drew Emborsky “The Crochet Dude.”
When he was a little boy in Ohio, Michael wanted to make something, so his mother taught him to knit facecloths. He went on from knitting to make things in lots of ways: macramé, rug hooking, needlepoint, cross stitch, pine cone wreaths, gluing string onto things – everything. This wealth of experience was to be expected in Michael’s family of fiber workers; his mother and grandmother knitted, tatted, and crocheted.
He honed his eye for color and design with a fine arts major in college and then he did what any self respecting arts major would do and got a job in retail where he continued his experience in merchandising with Joske’s, Lord & Taylor, and F.A.O. Schwartz (now he designs and knits toys!) He also managed to do painted faux finishes all around town. Today he has his own consultancy for non-profits in Houston.
Six years ago Michael took up the needles again to help a friend learn to knit. He crawled into the attic and dug out his mother’s knitting tools, and that year everyone got scarves. Michael has developed his old/new love and is now a master of knitting techniques especially color work and pattern and stitch work. And he still enjoys teaching people to knit.
While fairly new to Houston, Sharon Patterson is not new to knitting. Like so many others she learned at a young age from her mother and grandmother, both of whom always had a project close at hand. Although, where you and I knit for the challenge or pleasure, they were producing out of need.
She also quilts and needlepoints but knitting has always been her first love.
Sharon is currently involved in working towards the Master Knitter’s accreditation.
Macarena Smartt is a well-travelled artist who has taken inspiration from the many regions she has visited. Art was an essential part of Macarena’s family; her father, an architect, taught her to paint and draw and her mother, an avid knitter, taught her to knit. Having a mother keenly interested in fashion meant having the best-dressed daughter; the young Macarena had a closet full of crocheted and knitted dresses! It was no surprise that Macarena followed an artistic path. Macarena’s passion for crochet in fashion and fine arts has given her the opportunity to work on many interesting projects. While living in Sydney, she worked on costumes for TV, film and theater, as well as teaching crochet.
Her students included students of fashion, who viewed crochet as both fashion and art.
Macarena has also lived in London and now resides in Houston. She has continued painting, using oil paints on canvas, a medium which allows her to use a variety of techniques and styles. While every painting has a special meaning, she always includes the viewers in her pieces, allowing them to ‘write their own paragraph’ of their own emotions and story. Macarena incorporates this into her teaching style, giving guidance to her students, as well as encouraging them to explore their creativity to achieve unique and original pieces.
Macarena exhibits in Houston, donating paintings to charity auctions, and crocheting beanies for Texas Children’s Hospital.