Meet The Instructors
Tammy Barclay was only 5 when she learned to knit and purl stitch at her grandmother's knee. It was the impetus for her lifelong love of fiber arts, particularly knitting. She still remembers the excitement of knitting her first Norwegian sweater as a college student, and subsequent and even more complicated Nordic designs that followed. Since 2006, Tammy has come from her home in Wisconsin every year to Norsk Hostfest to demonstrate knitting at the Lusk Scandia Woodworks booth in Copenhagen Hall. She is knowledgeable about knitting as well as the Nordic history that has contributed to making knitting such a popular fiber art.
As a first time instructor at last year's Norse Høstfest, Debi Feyh quickly established herself as an expert in Scandinavian heritage needlework. This year she teaches two new - but very old - forms of needlework that she researched; in Sweden, Näversöm (birch bark embroidery) and in Norway, Kräkesølvbroderi(mica embroidery). A Fargo resident, Debi has studied textile arts in Norway and Sweden and is passionate about sharing these arts with others who enjoy unique needlework forms. She initially became inspired by the needlework talents of her great-grandmother, who immigrated to the Little Sweden area of Kansas from Hälsingland, Sweden. Now, Debi designs, teaches, and lectures on many styles of needlework. She has touched the lives of more than 40,000 needlework enthusiasts with her teaching and newsletters.
Accomplished fiber artist, teacher, designer and business owner Bonnie Josephson Lundorff creates and shares her Scandinavian designs in wool applique and needle felting techniques with customers and students all over the upper Midwest. At home in the Minnesota woods, Bonnie owns and operates Willow Wood Market, a quilt shop/wool studio. Bonnie's original design patterns and hand dyed wool are also available at quilt shops in Wisconsin and other Minnesota locations. She is passionate about designing and working with wools and cottons, and eager to share the old-time Scandinavian arts of needle felting and wool applique with enthusiastic students.
Teresa McCue Thompson
Teresa McCue Thompson is a Vesterheim Gold Medal Rosemaling award winner, the highest award given in the United States for rosemaling expertise. Inspired by the love of her Scandinavian heritage, her education and growth over the years has come from a blend of instruction at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum, private study in Norway and professional practice. Her dedication as a rosemaling artist has enabled her to help preserve the integrity of this highly stylized art. Teresa is well known at Norsk Høstfest as one of the Copenhagen Hall master artists.
Now in her third year teaching nålbinding at Høstfest University, Kelsey Patton has proven she is a skilled artist and born teacher. Her nalbinding classes sell out and participants who couldn't pronounce the term when they signed up for the class rave about their new skills when they finish it. Kelsey comes to Minot from Nebraska where she owns and operates Spindle, Shuttle, and Needle, a business that specializes in sales of top-quality Icelandic wool as well as other yarns and wool, weaving supplies, patterns, designs and historical costumes. Her favorite method of spinning is with a traditional Viking Age spindle. She also enjoys weaving Scandinavian tablet-woven bands, used in many different folk costumes.
Living in Norway and studying Art Metals at the University of Wisconsin prepared Norma Refsal for her second career as a jewelry designer. Norma creates 21st century jewelry in Neo-Nordic styles. She specializes in Sami inspired jewelry, a Scandinavian traditional art she became familiar with while spending time north of the Arctic Circle with the indigenous Sami people. She has also studied Scandinavian folk arts with American and Norwegian artists at a variety of locations. She works in multiple mediums including metal, wood, leather, horn and bone. She and her husband, Harley, are in high demand as Scandinavian folk art teachers. They travel year-round throughout the United States and to Scandinavian countries teaching classes in their areas of specialty. Now in her third year teaching at Høstfest University, Norma Refsal has developed a word-of-mouth following that resulted in sold-out classes last year and a mailing list for notification of this year's classes.
Google flat plane woodcarving and you'll find that Harley Refsal's name is synonymous with this Norwegian art that was dying until the American-born Harley revived it. His efforts earned him a private audience with the King of Norway, who awarded Harley the prestigious St. Olav's Medal for reinvigorating and popularizing Scandinavian figure carving in North America and Norway. Harley lived in Norway on two separate occasions and speaks fluent Norwegian. Named Woodcarver of the Year in 2012 by Woodcarving Illustrated Magazine, Harley is the author of several books, including Scandinavian Style Woodcarving, Whittling Little Folk and Carving Trolls and other Scandinavian-Style Characters. He is also an excellent teacher, having taught on the college level at Luther College in Decorah, IA, where he is still a Professor Emeritus in Scandinavian Folk Art.
Vesterheim Gold Medal Award winner Nancy Schmidt is an accomplished rosemaler in various rosemaling styles, including Telemark, Gudbrandsdal, Rogaland, Os, Hallingdal and Valdres. Her work has received Best of Show awards in national competitions, she has taught classes throughout the United States, and she serves as a judge for rosemaling competitions. During a trip to Japan in 1999, she kindled an interest in this Norwegian art form among the Japanese. She has since returned to Japan several times to teach rosemaling classes, as well as across the US. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a degree in art education.