Wool week teachers 2024

Guðrún Bjarnadóttir

Guðrún Bjarnadóttir has a degree in nature science. She dyes yarn according to old traditions with herbs, but uses modern technology, for example. electricity, although the methods are basically the same as before.

Guðrún started dyeing when she wrote her MS thesis on herbs and their use in Iceland, but plant dyeing is one form of that, but then she found old sources about dyeing that piqued her interest. Guðrún was brought up in a strong handicraft tradition, but her mother was a handicraft teacher and her grandmother taught her to know the herbs and use them. Guðrún runs the herbal dyeing workshop Hespuhúsið by Selfoss, where visitors have the opportunity to look into the dyeing pots and learn about the old dyeing tradition.

Margrét Jónsdóttir

My name is Margrét Jónsdóttir and I am a dairy and sheep farmer, but my main job is to run the wool shop at Þingborg.

I have been surrounded by handcrafts as long as I remember. My mother has always knitted and sewn a lot along with other handcrafts. She taught me to do things well. I have taken classes here in Iceland and abroad and learned a lot from the women in Þingborg over the last 3 decades. I have knitted and designed a lot of lopapeysur and together with my sister Anna Dóra we published the book Lopalist in 2015. I have been teaching classes in how to make a lopapeysa in Shetland Woolweek 2017 and at the Swiss Yarn Festival in 2023.

Helga Thoroddsen

First and foremost, I am a passionate knitwear designer as well an enthusiast about everything that has to do with creating beautiful and unique textiles. I have a M.Sc. degree in textile science from Colorado State University as well as a B.Ed. degree from The Iceland University of Education with special emphasis on textiles and crafts. Sweaters are my extra special passion as well as sample knitting and figuring out the most stubborn knitting patterns to the point of losing sleep. 

I offer clinics and lectures upon requests as well as many of my latest designs on my webpage www.prjon.is 

Liz Gaffney

Liz has a  degree in Floristry which has given her a good botanical knowledge and 8 years of developing new techniques. She also felts and grows her own dye plants

She teaches workshops and is looking forward to sharing the joy of imprinting with you.

Find out more about her on www.heartfeltbyliz.com  or facebook  Heartfelt by liz.

Gunnlaug Hannesdóttir

I am a textile teacher and have been teaching in schools for 34 years. I have also taught classes to grown ups outside of school: patch work, knitting, embroidery, paper making etc.

My main interest (apart from crafts) is to pass on my experience and knowledge. I enjoy when my students go home happy with a new craft and a new project mastered under my tuition. You can find me at www.gunnhann.is and in my studio, which is open by appointment.

Kathy Sparks, The Hand Maiden

Kathy Sparks, The Hand Maiden,  is celebrating  50 years as a fiber artist.  Living in the Midwestern United States (Indiana),  Kathy retired from teaching science at the college level and now devotes her life to researching traditional fiber arts, especially natural dyes.

“Everything I produce is By Hand, using locally sourced fibers, or crops I’ve grown on my farm. When someone works with yarn I have created, they hold in their hands a product that has been infused with color, naturally produced, locally grown and created with inspiration provided by nature.”

A popular workshop instructor, Kathy has taught spinning, weaving and knitting workshops around the globe. As breeder of Connemara Ponies, she continues to serve the breed society as Chair of the Inspections Program.   A grandmother to three active young boys, Kathy is the author of three books, including The Song of the Muskox which focuses on her favorite fiber – Qiviut.

Maja Siska

Maja is a textiler, maker and architect as well as running guest cotages on her farm. She has been a hand spinner and knitter since early childhood and is interested in all manner´s of making.

For the past 10 years she has been fascinated by the Icelandic sheep and its wool. She has made a series of works from raw wool: www.majasiska.is

Maja has taught spinning in Iceland, at PLYaway USA and at Shetland Woolweek. She designs knitting patterns and is majasiska on ravelry.

Anna Dóra Jónsdóttir

Anna Dóra Jónsdóttir is born in 1962 and raised in the farm Syðri-Völlur in Flóahreppur. She learned a lot of hand crafts from her mother when she was growing up. 

She went to school in Laugarvatn to study home making and is also an office technician. She has focused on knitting in the past few years and especially knitting from Lopi, she published the knitting book Lopalist with her sister, Margrét Jónsdóttir, in 2015.

Hulda Brynjólfsdóttir

Hulda Brynjólfsdóttir is a Spinning sister who took the spinning to the next level; quit her job as a teacher and founded the very first mini mill in Iceland with her husband, Tyrfingur. They farm with cattle and sheep and spin yarn at the farm from the wool of their sheep, as well as spinning for others who want yarn from their own wool.

Hulda runs a small shop above the mill where she sells her yarn, all in the natural colour of the sheep or dyed by herself.

Laura Senator

Laura Senator, also known as Laura Spinner, is a pediatrician and fiber artist from New Jersey, USA.

She has the Rainbow Twist Shop on Etsy and is known for creative spinning and colourful hand dyed yarn and has taught in classes and workshops in both USA and in Iceland.

She is an honorary Spinning sister.

Marianne Guckelsberger

My area of interest is viking and medieval textile techniques such as hand spinning like the settlers of Iceland did, drop spindle spinning, quilting and finger looping, along with other tools that are unknown to many people today.

By combining scientific and historical sources with practical work, we have a clear picture of the absolutely incredible labor contribution of women in earlier centuries. I have held courses in the above methods at the Home Industry School as well as other institutes both in Iceland and abroad and worked on the restoration of various ancient textiles, like clothing from Ketilsstaðir and Herjólfsnes along with accessories.

On Facebook, I go by the name Marianne Tóvinnukona, there you can find pictures of what I do.

Þórey Axelsdóttir

Þórey was born in 1949 in Fljótsdalur in the east of Iceland and was there until she was twenty years old, then she moved to Reykjavík.

She is a practical nurse and that has been her job through the years. Þórey has been interested in any kind of hand craft since she was young. Þórey has studied many things, for example what is now known as Creative Sustainability at Hallormsstaður in east Iceland, in the Iceland Wool school and many other courses with the Þingborg group and others.

Kristjana Kona Ragnhildardóttir Traustadóttir

I learned how to crochet in 2010 and was hooked from day one. I particularily love to make baskets. It is ideal to keep your craft projects handy in these beautiful baskets in your home. I enjoy working with natural materials and I crochet my baskets with wool yarn.

I hold a teachers degree from Universiti of Iceland in handcrafts/textiles and have been teaching under the name of my label and company “Hringlandi” since 2018. I enjoy seeing people get excited about carfting and witness the beginning of new interests and hobbies.