OUR CURRENT EDUCATORSUnsurpassed artistry.
Owner of Sew in Stitches Quilt Shoppe and partner in Bell Sisters Designs, Becky began her career in education after serving in the U.S. Army. She has taught 3rd-8th grade and worked as a Science Department Coordinator. Her experience working with a variety of students and managerial skills will be evident when you see her in action. She brings those same skills to the quilting industry. You will find her classes well planned for a productive and entertaining day. She is the proud mother of 3, and grandmother of 2. When Becky is not in the store, you will find her on the boat enjoying the sunshine or on a snowmobile enjoying the beautiful outdoors.
Tracey’s passion for quilting led her to open a quilt shop. Tracey soon found herself on the road more often than in the shop. With the increase of travel and responsibilities of home, the ownership of Sew in Stitches was transferred to Becky. Tracey understands the multitude of tasks a shop owner has to complete and respects the value of time. She has been a teacher and demonstrator for over 20 years. The demand for her to teach throughout the country continues to grow, so Tracey and Becky started Bell Sisters Designs. Tracey is the creative driving force behind Sew in Stitches Quilt Shoppe and Bell Sisters Designs. She is also a proud mother of 3, and grandmother of 3. When not working, Tracey helps her husband with his automotive business and spends time enjoying the outdoors with family.
Joanne Hillestad has been sewing for years and years. As a very small girl growing up in Duluth, Minnesota, my sister and I were always making something. Fabric is just one medium I love to play with. On my birthday in 2013, I woke up knowing that I had to follow my dreams. That was the day the Fat Quarter Gypsy was born. I started out designing quilts, which I still love to do. But then in April of 2015, I had this idea for a springy thread catcher. Once the Fat Quarter Pop came to life everything changed and my business took a design turn towards dimensional products.
Susan Emory and I began working together in 2017. Susan started helping me create a line of animal themed pop ups. I have always loved the Swirly Girls patterns. In 2018, the opportunity to purchase Swirly Girls Design happened and now I am the proud owner of two pattern lines. Fat Quarter Gypsy focuses on dimensional projects. Swirly Girls focuses on quilts, which feeds my quilty soul.
Kristine Poor started Poorhouse Quilt Designs was founded in September 2006, after designing the Sampler Tote as a gift for a family member. The tote was a hit around town and a pattern company was born! She has a degree in Engineering and a love of fabric and color! The pattern line has grown since 2006 – there are bags, bowls, quilts, banners, ornaments…recently we have added machine embroidery and laser cutting to the mix. The most popular pattern from the Poorhouse is the Fold ‘N Stitch Wreath. She enjoys experimenting with unusual materials and sharing the results with you! Think of these projects as a “creativity booster shot”! Stitch a little, add your personal touch and in a short amount of time, your project is done!
Jacquelyn Morris Smith
I have been sewing since I was 11 or 12, making my own clothing, my grandmother taught me to use needle and thread and embroidery. During my “young mother years” I sewed clothing for our family as well as utility quilts to keep the family warm.
Quilting entered my life in 2007, and I became so absorbed in all its facets, I knew I had to keep learning. I have taken classes from some of the nation’s top quilters, and from the VERY talented instructors here in our own little world of Pima County- Tucson, AZ. I am continuously amazed at the talent I see displayed at quilt shows and expos, as I travel the U.S.
Now I am teaching those who want to learn and those who are already advanced. But I have found through the teaching experiences that I also learn from the students. Teaching experience has taken me across the United States, and on the open seas- as the Program Director and educator for Quilt Retreat at Sea.
The Zentangle Method has helped me completely change the actual quilting of the three layers. Now I can do the whole quilt process from piecing to finishing on my very small domestic sewing machine. I enjoy sharing this incredible experience with those who are curious and who love the Art of Quilting.
Past students have remarked that they “like to take my classes, because I have already made the mistakes, and they won’t have to”.
Peggy has been quilting and helping others learn the joy of quilt making for over 40 years. As a quilt teacher, sharing the art of quilt making is her passion. She has taught quilt making across the United States and in Canada teaching at large guild classes, quilting retreats and small private groups in her home. Her teaching style won her a nomination for Quilt Teacher of the Year sponsored by the Professional Quilter.
Peggy loves making traditional quilt patterns look new again with modern fabrics and techniques. She enjoys trying and learning different techniques in the quilt making process, always looking for an easier way to conquer those seemingly intricate patterns.
Originally from Oregon, Peggy spent 22 years in Ketchikan, Alaska with her husband, Ron, raising their three children. With the children grown she and her husband have come back home to Oregon.
Learn more about Peggy and her style here: https://yellowhousequilter.com/
Sherida joined her first quilt guild over 20 years ago, and along with finding lifetime friends, it provides a constant source of quilting inspiration. She now belongs to several guilds and loves attending meetings, and seeing all the amazing things that others have accomplished. As a Certified Instructor for Judy Niemeyer/Quiltworx, Sherida has found a way to combine her love of teaching, with the sharing of the precision of Judy’s paper piecing techniques. It is a wonderful feeling to encourage others to develop more confidence in their own skills while creating something special, and having fun at the same time.
Johanne is an accomplished quilter and long armer, who has been involved in all aspects of sewing since she was a teen. She has worked at local quilt shops and taught a multitude of different quilting classes, including Quiltworx paper piecing, and is involved with teaching new quilters in 4H. She has taken classes from local and international quilt teachers, including Judy Niemeyer and various Quiltworx Certified Instructors. Her piecing and long arm work has been featured in several quilting magazines and a book.
She got her sea legs in 2018 while assisting Sherida on a Quilt Retreat at Sea Cruise to Hawaii and is looking forward to sharing her passion on her next cruise through the Panama Canal in 2021.
Jean Biddick is an award-winning quiltmaker, author and teacher whose specialty is creating stunning machine-pieced masterpieces. She is well known for her quilts inspired by mosaic tile work. Her quilts have won awards from both the American Quilter’s Society in Paducah and the International Quilt Festival in Houston. One of her miniature quilts is in the permanent collection of the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky.
She has been teaching quiltmaking for more than 35 years and loves to help students become more confident in their piecing skills. She started designing Mystery Quilts for The Quilter’s Market in 2006 and enjoys sharing those designs with her students.