Deborah Robson

FiberTrain 2014 Welcomes Deborah Robson, co-author of The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook, the Field Guild to Fleece, Handspinning Rare Wools, and more!  We are honored to have her share with us her vast knowledge and love for fiber arts and history in her classes this year!

Deborah says, " I emphasize knowledge of raw materials, experimentation, discovery, and the individual creative process, all set in a context of history. One of my goals is to connect our current lives and textile crafts with the heritage that precedes us and also with the future. I tell a lot of stories and offer information that helps people both “mess around” with fiber and develop confidence in their own abilities." 

Many videos by Deborah, including her appearances on Interweave Craft and Knitting Daily channels can be found on Youtube.   [ Visit Deborah's Website ]

  • Fiber Farm, for People Who Want to Grow Animal Fiber
  • How We Made the Fleece & Fiber Source Book
  • Making The Most of Your Wool Crop
  • Hand Spinning on a Drop Spindle 

Carol Ekarius

FiberTrain Festival 2014 welcomes Carol Ekarius, prolific author and expert on sustainable small scale farming in all its forms!  Carol, a self-described “Word Smith” lives off the grid on the high plains of Colorado, and is co-author of The Fleece & Fiber Source Book and The Field Guide to Fleece. She is sole author of Storey’s Illustrated Guide to Poultry Breeds, Pocketful of Poultry, Hobby Farm: Living Your Rural Dream for Pleasure and Profit, How to Build Animal Housing, Storey’s Guide to Raising Sheep, and Small-Scale Livestock Farming. We can’t emphasize enough what a unique opportunity we all have this year to learn from Carol, and we urge our community to take advantage of it! The chance may not come again soon enough.

 [See Carol’s Website]

  • Fiber Farm, for People Who Want to Grow Animal Fiber
  • How We Made the Fleece & Fiber Source Book
  • Chickens 101
  • Livestock 101


Heidi Mikitish

FiberTrain 2014 welcomes Heidi Mikitish of “Thriving Hive Studios"; an art-centric textile studio specializing in handspun yarn and custom art batts based out of Nampa, Idaho.

Heidi is an accomplished art yarn creator, versatile spinner, instructor, and fiber artist, known for her “Freedom in Spinning Art Yarns" class and her energetic approach to the arts.

Knitting since 2003 and spinning since childhood, Heidi is a lover of passionate creativity. She loves to immerse herself in color and texture, and strives to communicate that love to the world through the works she creates. You won't want to miss this opportunity to take one of Heidi's spinning classes, and will find that your spinning skill set is broadened while you become inspired simultaneously. [ Visit Heidi's Website ]

  • Freedom In Spinning Art Yarns
  • Spinning Little Luxuries


Kim Mitchell

FiberTrain Festival 2014 welcomes local accomplished knit instructor, Kim Mitchell! Kim is helping FiberTrain accomplish its offerings for continuing knit skills this year, by offering classes that produce beautiful, wearable garments while advancing beginning through intermediate knitters.


 Addicted to all yarn-related activities, Kim has been knitting for over 30 years. Socks, sweaters,

shawls - she loves it all, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others overcome their knitting fears.  A web developer by trade, she also spins, creates glass mosaics, rides motorcycles with her husband, and has recently discovered rigid heddle weaving. Kim is a big believer in the therapeutic value of knitting, and carries at least one project with her wherever she goes. She finds the fiber art community to be an endless source of inspiration. She and her husband reside in Meridian, Idaho.
Kim Mitchell is the kind of instructor that you will want to follow if you’re a local; an encourager with a vast skill set that will set you free to act on projects that inspire you! Check out her great class offerings at FiberTrain Festival with the link below, and watch for her offerings in Nampa after the fest!
  • Bella Lana Reversible Knit Cable Scarf by Cornelia Griffin
  • Top Down Knitted Summer Cardi by Knitting Pure & Simple 

Lynn Ruggles

FiberTrain Festival 2014 welcomes Lynn Ruggles, Boise spinner, knitter, weaver, shepherd of her own Shetland flock, and known instructor. Lynn has been knitting since she was a child, spinning for over 20 years, and teaching for over 15. She has such large list of great classes to choose from, that it is hard for us to choose what she will teach every year!  Lynn has taught basic Drop Spinning, Spinning on a Support Spindle, and Color in Spinning at past FiberTrain Festivals, and teaches on detailed topics such as Spinning for Shetland, Wool Combing, and much more! 

For a complete list of current class offerings and events that Lynn Ruggles will be attending, visit her website and blog links below, and make sure to send feedback to FiberTrain Festival about what you would like to learn from Lynn in the future!

[Visit Lynn’s Website]  [Visit Lynn's Blog]

  •  Spinning For Socks


Melanie Smith

FiberTrain Festival 2014 Welcomes Melanie Smith, local instructor with more than 20 years experience as a Hands on fiber artist and fiber arts teacher specializing in crochet, knitting, and spinning, and weaving. She has taught classes through various yarn stores and community dducation programs, as well as in 4 H programs around the Treasure Valley and Idaho. She has also spent several years as a pattern tester for numerous yarn and design companies. 


Melanie is helping the mission of FiberTrain Festival along this year by offering a lesser-known historic art form called "Penny Wool" that will create beautiful finished products from your scrap wool stash.

  • The Historic Art of Penny Wool
  • Warp & Weave a Scrappy Scarf on a Rigid Heddle Loom


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