Staff & Tutors

Find out more about the Staff and Tutors at Crafts Bee.

We have some very experienced tutors at Crafts Bee. All have years of experience, and loads of talent, in their chosen craft. Find out more about them below.

Karen Murphy – Stained Glass, Jewellery and Mosaics

Karen is the owner of Crafts Bee and the holder of a PTLLS qualification in teaching.

Karen loves making anything but her favourites are stained glass and jewellery. She loves making tiffany style stained glass lamps. With their small and numerous pieces patience is essential although to her the smaller the better. Her record is 724 pieces in one lamp, most of them tiny grapes!

For jewellery she enjoys silver smithing, beading and chain maille.

Mhairi Furtado – Sewing, Dressmaking and Corsetry

Mhairi started her fashion career as a knitwear designer with River Island and spent many years working and travelling internationally with a number of High Street names.

Her passion was always for beautiful gowns and in 1998 Mhairi set up on her own working with private clients to create their dream Bridal dress. The process began with a detailed drawing and from there with the client’s measurements a toile would be made and many hours later the perfectly fitted gown would be ready for their special day. Mhairi loved making every gown as there were never two the same and working with beautiful silks, chiffon’s and lace fabrics made it a joy.

Mhairi has taught children and adults and loves to pass on her knowledge and skills to others. With patience and her designer’s flair she sees no limits to anyone’s creativity.

Claire Ceuppens – Knitting and Crochet

A keen crafter as a child I had a break for a few years studying Physics at university and working as a developer in IT . Having had my children I then decided to study again and successfully gained a City & Guilds in Design & Craft for Sugarcraft in 2010.

When my youngest started school I found I had some more time to fill and discovered quite by accident jewellery making. I set about teaching myself this new craft and absolutely love it. Since then I have enjoyed making commission pieces, selling at craft fairs and teaching others how to make their own jewellery. I am also a very keen on crochet, knitting, card making, macrame, working with polymer clay and many other crafts. I love to teach others the skills I have learnt in crochet, jewellery making, knitting and other areas and have taught both adults and children (including some with special needs).

Regan Purcell – Patchwork and Quilting

Regan Purcell has had an avid interest in patchwork and quilting for over 15 years. As a resident quilter with Popular Patchwork she certainly knows her stuff and spends some of her time making up samples for them, testing and editing other contributors’ articles and problem solving for readers.

She is very patient, loves teaching and holds a PTLLS qualification in teaching. One of her specialities is the design stage, preparing the pattern, solving any problems and creating a unique piece of work. 

Liz Pearson - Jewellery

Following a glittering career on the stage as a dancer and a diploma in musical theatre Liz changed direction and took a City and Guilds in fine jewellery.

She has been working as a jeweller for the last ten years, making her own and commissioned pieces. Liz is also a very experienced jewellery tutor, a senior metal clay instructor and the holder of a PTLLS qualification in teaching.

A patient and caring teacher come along to one of Liz’s fun and creative classes.

Karen Lewis - Silk painting

Karen Lewis – Silk painting Karen loved painting from an early age. Following a visit to Indonesia and seeing the beautiful batik work created there she began painting and experimenting with batik and silk painting. This developed into business with a range of hand painted silk garments, wall hangings and paintings which sold at galleries, shops and shows nationwide. Many pieces were one off’s or commissions, working with the ideas and preferences of the client to make them very personal and unique.

Karen followed this with teaching arts and crafts to people with physical disabilities, on a full time basis for 5 years. She encouraged them to both explore and enjoy different forms of expressing themselves and to sell their work.

A successful painter, especially with watercolour and charcoal, Karen has had her work exhibited at several galleries.

Nicola Corrigan – Sewing and Soft Furnishings

Nicola is a textile designer, artist and maker with many years’ experience as a commercial designer after studying Printed textile design at West Sussex College of Design. She has designed and styled textile designs and illustrations for a wide range of customers and ran a design agency specialising in Europe and the USA. In 2010 she launched her own range of home furnishing products, textiles, tea towels and cards. Her work is decorative, illustrative and contemporary and includes applique products, painted textile designs and illustration. Recent projects have included bespoke textile products and designs for fabrics, ceramics, packaging and homeware products. Nicola has taught children and adults for many years at community venues, Art Schools, Universities and Adult Education Colleges. She has taught design, Soft Furnishings, sewing, arts and crafts, painting and creative writing. Nicola loves teaching and is currently half way through a distance learning PGCE in teaching at Greenwich University. She also has a degree in English Literature and Creative writing from the Open University. Nicola enjoys designing, making, painting, writing and inspiring creativity in others.

Sandra Mckears Johnson– Paper Cutting, Lino Cutting and Print Making

Sandra Mckears Johnson is an experienced tutor and artist printmaker.

She studied fine art at Birmingham Polytechnic in the 1980’s Sandra sells her work at a gallery in Kent and has exhibited her work in many shows including the Society of Women Artists in London. Sandra has been successful in getting three prints into the Society of Womens Artists Exhibition which held at The Mall Galleries date 25th June – 5th July 2014.

Sandra loves printmaking, in particular lino cutting, and any craft work. She is always keen to share her skills. Her work can be viewed at

Elizabeth Coates - Patchwork and Quilting

Elizabeth has been interested in patchwork and quilting for over fifteen years.

Passing on her passion for patchwork to others has been a long term ambition. She has attended numerous courses with some well-known teachers of the quilting world including Mandy Shaw and Carolyn Forster. She has produced many quilts from small wall hangings to one measuring over 100” square and anything in between including small items such as bags and book covers.

Elizabeth is enthusiastic and patient and will encourage new quilters to become confident to explore the wonderful craft of patchwork and quilting.

Layla Totah - Sewing and Dressmaking

Layla has been sewing for 10 years and makes all her own clothes. She started sewing for a living when she moved to Beirut 6 years ago and started a small business teaching others to sew, The Old Fashioned Way: she had soon persuaded half of Beirut that sewing was cool!

As well as sewing pretty much all the time she knits, bakes and teaches English at a secondary school.  



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