I have a background of working with my hands, designing, and creating beautiful things. When I was 18, I joined my mother in her jewelry business. From her I was given skills, guidance, and a freedom to create. My first spoon was carved at an Art of Mentoring in 2013. Many thought I was crazy that I wanted to become a professional spoon carver. Since March of 2018 my focus has been to spend as much time with professional Green Woodworkers as I possible, living in the UK to learn from the masters. I am now back in Sonoma County, California co-founding the Hearth Folk School.
My art offers an experience to connect to our natural world with the beauty that enriches our lives. I teach art with the intention of reviving the lost arts and with a love of connecting others with their own individual expression, while offering a space for connection with ourselves, our community and our Earth. I have my B.A. of Arts and studied Weaving from the natives in New Mexico and have been Weaving and creating for 17 years. My passion for creating Pine Needle Baskets began with a friend, Jim Harper, for whom I will be eternally grateful for passing on the gift and reminding my hands of their many lifetimes of knowledge.
Nick LaHaise is a basket weaver, natural foods chef, green wood carver, and all around multi-talented craftsman. Over the last decade, he has studied various traditional crafts, wilderness skills, deep nature connection, permaculture, and rites of passage. Nick currently works at Credo High School and is co-founding the Hearth Folk School in Sonoma County, California. He's been teaching willow weaving for 7 years and loves sharing the craft with others.
Margie Miller is a painter and art historian. A graduate of the art department at UC Davis, she did her postgraduate studies in fine art at the Oregon School of Arts and Crafts. She has been a frequent presenter at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, has taught in public schools and colleges for over 20 years, and for the last decade has taught the High Sierra Painting Workshop at Elwell Lakes Lodge.
She is currently the principal owner of Margie Miller Fine Art Restoration, incorporating her technical expertise with a love for preserving history.
She is an associate of the American Institute for Conservation.
Lorraine Nielsen is a fiber artisan creating handspun yarns and wool products. Begining with a spinning class in 1975, she has cultivated a passion for spinning, felting, knitting, and weaving with wool from her own flock of majestic Jacob sheep. She is often found out in the pasture, checking on her sheep, twirling a handspindle, making yarn whenever she can. Lorraine has embraced her art as a way of life. “My journey with sheep has led me far beyond my wildest, early spinning dreams, deep inside questions and challenges of responsible agriculture, issues of global economics, and the ethics of textiles, in addition to the pure joy of creating with the medium of fiber.”
About 6 years ago, I started learning more about trees as organisms then branched into how to use them as a working material. I explored traditional techniques in a variety of crafts. In 2017, I found my passion in green woodwork and particularly in bowl turning on a pole lathe. It continues to be so fascinating for me to create something useful and beautiful with such simple methods. Through my travels to the UK in 2018 I had the opportunity to take a big step forward with my skills. Now I‘m travelling the world to share this knowledge with other interested and creative people. I‘m happy to share it with you, too.
I have been playing with fabrics my entire life. I learned to sew, embroider and macrame as a child. Then came quilting, knitting and surface design. Currently, I am excited about exploring more macrame, felting, weaving and basketry. Somewhere along the way, I decided to open a craft school.
I can't imagine my life without a few artsy projects in the queue.
We are looking to expand our workshops with:
Is this you?
You are passionate about your craft. Your happiest moments are spent thinking about your craft, dreaming up new designs, experimenting with new faucets of it and making lots of it. Talking about it animates you. You can spent all day immersed in your craft. You walk gently on the earth and love working outside. Your craft is made by hand using simple tools and natural materials. You are excited to share your skills and coax emerging ideas from your students. You might have teaching experience, might have liability insurance, might sell you work, or maybe not.