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About Us and Tutors

Below you can find information about all of our wonderful tutors including links to their own websites so you can view even more images of their stunning works.
Jane Read

Jane was taught to make lace by her mother, Pat Read, a lacemaker awarded the MBE for her services to lacemaking and author of three books on Milanese lace, which include Jane’s designs and lace. Both her grandmothers were lacemakers too!

Great Escapes was thrilled to start Jane’s teaching career on the ‘retirement’ of her mother back in 2013. Jane has won many competitions for her designs and work, and contributed patterns and designs to lace magazines over the years.
It goes without saying that Jane comes with an incredible lace pedigree and a wealth of knowledge that she enjoys sharing with her students. Jane has endless patience and the work that her students produce is always inspirational.

Justine Gage

Justine has always loved crafts of many kinds, especially those that are three-dimensional such as origami and dressmaking. She has been teaching beadwork
for more than five years and regularly publishes in various beadwork magazines such as Bead & Jewellery.

She is always experimenting with new bead shapes, and looking for new designs, that are easy to make and use accessible materials. Justine also has a special interest in beaded beads.

Justine is a relatively new teacher to Great Escapes but she has been welcomed
by all and her beautifully produced, clear and detailed instruction booklets are much appreciated.

Justine won the British Bead Awards non-jewellery category in 2014 with her Mexican Miracle Box.

Sue Hawkins

Sue began her working life apprenticed to an antique dealer whose speciality was seventeenth century English embroidery. It was under this lady’s expert tuition that she learned to restore and care for these treasured textiles. Many years later as a well-known embroidery designer, her inspiration still comes from these more traditional designs.

Sue has authored several needlepoint books over the years and now runs ‘Needleworks’ her own embroidery kit company. Specialising in beautiful counted canvaswork, the designs make up into the most exquisite needleworkers’ accessories. Sue is regularly to be found on her stand at all the major embroidery shows around the country.

Sue is a great tutor and her classes are always a lot of fun with plenty of laughter as well as a lot of stitching. Great Escapes is honoured to be the only residential weekend that Sue teaches at.


Siân Nolan

Great Escapes is thrilled to welcome Siân in 2019. When Siân’s obsession with teeny tiny glass beads began nearly 20 years ago now, she never could have imagined where it would take her; travelling, teaching workshops, writing for books and magazines, meeting her beading idols and the biggest surprise of all, in 2015 having her own book published.

Siân loves the whimsical and the unusual and is inspired by bright colours so it’s no surprise that her book, ‘Sian’s Needle Cases’ contains a quirky and fun collection of playful cases.



Lizzy Pye

Great Escapes are delighted to have Lizzy back after the birth of her son, Harrison.  Lizzy has been stitching for longer than she can remember, thanks in no small part to her wonderful Granny who is sorely missed - she taught her to knit when she was just three! 
The moment her love of stitch began to form itself into a career came at the Knitting & Stitching Show in 2004. Lizzy met the very lovely Jenny Adin-Christie, and first came across the Royal School of Needlework.  Long story short, in 2006 she enrolled as an Apprentice at the RSN, completely innocent of the three years of hard graft to become a professional embroiderer.  In 2009 she was lucky enough to be one of the last six graduates, finishing with a Distinction and very sore fingertips!

Lizzy is passionate about passing on her skills through teaching, and preserving both skills and heirlooms for future generations to enjoy.
Lizzy was commissioned to write the Royal School of Needlework’s Essential Stitch Guide: Whitework, published in 2012.  She has worked on embroidery designs with the Royal Opera House and was privileged to be involved in the creation of Kate Middleton’s wedding gown.  Lizzy has now written another book, this time her subject is Goldwork.  It is due for publication anytime soon!

Anna Winter

Anna Winter specialises in the art of Flemish Lace and Danish Whitework, teaching both traditional and more contemporary designs. She has been teaching lacemaking and Danish Whitework for many years and is an active member of several lace making groups including the North Downs Lace Makers. Anna has been a very popular Great Escapes tutor for many years now.



Sandi Woods

Sandi Woods trained as a Fine Artist, a background that has been invaluable to her work as a lacemaker and designer.
Having always had a fascination for textiles, in 1983 Sandi started teaching herself lacemaking from books. A fortuitous chance to attend a Honiton workshop by Patricia Read led to many more years under Patricia Read’s wing, specialising in Milanese lace.

Eventually, Sandi’s love of colour inspired her to draw all the threads from her previous painting and textile experiences together and develop her own colour
techniques, using coloured threads in a descriptive and painterly way. All Sandi’s patterns are original creations.


Lorna Bateman

Originally from South Africa, Lorna has lived in the UK for more than twenty years. Lorna has been teaching embroidery for Great Escapes for many years and is a much loved member of the team. Teaching and sharing her designs and embroidery techniques is Lorna’s passion. Her teaching has taken her all over the world including the USA, South Africa, Europe, Russia and Ireland.

Lorna has a passion for flowers and gardens, and this shines through in all of her work. She is currently working on her first book ‘Embroidered Country Gardens’ to be published and released by Search Press in the spring of 2019.




Julie Harris

Julie Harris is a knitwear designer and botanical artist, who has been knitting for over 50 years.  Since starting her business in 2012, she has published over 20 knit and crochet designs for shawls, garments and accessories using traditional stitch patterns such as Fair Isle, lace, cable and gansey stitches.  These vary in complexity from simple designs ideal for beginners, to more complex patterns in fine yarns.

Julie is also an indie dyer, and to complement her designs she produces hand-painted yarns and threads in luxurious natural fibres under the brand name Watercolours & Lace.  These are available online and at events around the UK, in an ever-changing palette of over 400 colourways inspired by flowers and the landscape surrounding her home in the Norfolk countryside.


Chloe Menage

Delighted to have Chloe back teaching after the birth of her daughter, Rose. As an experienced jewellery designer and teacher, Chloe was previously Editor of popular publication Bead & Jewellery magazine and online TV channel Bead.TV. She is a Starman Trendsetter Alumni and regularly contributes to bead and craft magazines.

In 2018 Chloe won first place in the Professional category of the Stitchncraft Beads challenge. She has had her work exhibited in various galleries and exhibitions including Winchester Discover Centre, the Willis Museum, The Spring and Ashcroft Arts Centre. Chloe has been teaching beading and jewellery making techniques for more than 10 years and enjoys sharing her passion for beads with others. Her teaching has taken her all around the UK as well as further afield to Sweden.

Judith Cordell

Judith’s love of lace was born in 1994 at an Adult Education class and by 2002 she was specialising in Rosaline Perlé. She has since self published two books on Rosaline. Judith has a passion for taking traditional lacemaking skills forward and has spent time studying antique pieces of Rosaline searching for fillings and techniques, which are teased out and worked into modern pieces.

Judith started her teaching career on a Great Escapes weekend way back in 2003 and she takes inspiration from the many country houses she has taught in across the country. She has also taught in Europe and the USA and runs her own local lace classes near to her home in Southampton, Hampshire.

She is a dedicated and competent teacher, and Judith prepares her workshops thoroughly, and has endless patience and kindness. Judith is a delight to spend the weekend with and is a popular and much loved member of the team.
Judith and Great Escapes are rightly proud of keeping one of the little known Belgian laces in the limelight. You’d be amazed how many people ask if Rosaline is a new lace.

Bethany Woods

Bethany has stitched, drawn and made ‘things’ since she was a very small child. In fact according to family folklore, you could always find Bethany by following the trail of string about the house - and nothing's changed. After five years at Edinburgh College of Art studying landscape architecture, Bethany turned her attention to three-dimensional design on a rather smaller scale and is now making her counted cross-stitch and embroidery designs available to all. 


Bethany's quirky, whimsical creations are set in Honeyapple Meadow - a magical country estate inspired by the beautiful English countryside, stately homes, historic textiles, and a lifetime spent in art galleries and museums. Whether you are beginning your stitching journey or are many miles down the road, there's always something new to discover...



Laura Andrew

Creating art and beading began for Laura when she was a child. Her mother, a very talented artist, taught her beading, sharing the importance of creativity and originality.

Training in art, colour, theatrical costuming, glass lampworking, metalwork, wirework, beading and communication have led Laura to teaching the art of beadwork. Her extensive background in theatrical costume design has provided a great deal of related experience, especially in the area of colour selection and tonal relationships. Favorite past productions include Costume Designer for "Cats" and Jewelry Designer for "Evita". She has been taking classes and now teaching at the Bead and Button Show for many years.

Laura has taught throughout the US and Europe, including teaching for Swarovski and Toho Beads. The German bead magazine, Perlen Poesie, featured Laura in their 4th issue. In 2014 Laura was a designer of the year for Beadwork magazine. Her work has been featured in many publications and used to advertise Bead & Button Show, Beadfest and Beaders Best Bead Fair.

As a recognized international designer and instructor, Laura is eager to share her love of colour, design and bead artistry.