Member Profiles


Colleen Arnold

Colleen Arnold (Kyabram, Vic) began selling handspun yarn at markets in 2007. Market items now include hand dyed yarns and wool tops, and also bringing the NEY products to another area of selling. Other handmade items include scarves and beanies.

Most items are handmade from handspun yarns, but commercially processed natural fibres are also used. She currently attends the Girgarre Farmer’s Market on the 2nd Sunday of every month, the Nagambie Market on the 1st Saturday of every month, and the Mooroopna Farmers Market on the 3rd Sunday of every month. Special events include the Echuca Steam Rally on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend and sharing with the North East Yarns at the Bendigo Sheep & Wool Show in July.

Machine knitted garments and accessories are being slowly introduced.



Graham Carson

Pauline and Graham Carson live in the beautiful Wooragee Valley in North East Victoria and run a small flock of coloured Corriedale sheep. Pauline has enjoyed “doing things” with her fleeces such as spinning, knitting and of more recent times, felting. She enjoys the natural colours and soft handle of the Corriedale fleeces.

Graham supports the association by making all kinds of items to assist at markets - portable panels, umbrella stands, folding tables.


Pauline Carson

In addition to her flock interests, Pauline brings to the group her organisational and administrative skills.

She records market activity, works out the distribution for joint projects, books markets and undertakes many tasks that help to make our natural fibre products available to all.

Laura Gunkel

Laura Gunkel

I live in the gourmet region of Milawa.  I have had a passion for wool for many years, mainly knitting and spinning.  I am a former member of the Black and Coloured Sheep Breeders, owning a coloured Corriedale flock during that time.  

I have completed many hand crafted items over the years, mainly  knitted and crocheted garments and am always looking for new ideas  to inspire me for my next project.

My other interests include breeding Welsh Mountain ponies and poultry.


Suzanne Kleefman

Suzanne has been spinning for 20 years and is proficient in spinning silk and alpaca. Suzanne’s fine handspun yarns result in her knitted and crocheted shawls being in demand. She has recently acquired a weaving loom and looks forward to adding weaving to her craft skills. She is also experimenting with felting.


Madeline Larkin

Madeline has a passion for art and craft and has her hand in a variety of crafts with the latest being felting. She has been doing this for approximately 5 years. Her interest initially came from Marj Larkin, her mother inlaw, who breeds alpacas. Madeline uses a mixture of wet and dry felting along with needlefelting and embellishing. Her small daughter inspires her to create special garments and interesting trinkets for children.


Marj Larkin

Marj is a breeder of alpacas and produces alpaca fleeces in a wide range of colours. Her skills in transforming this elite fibre into saleable products are extensive. She produces hats, bags, scarves and toys in knitting and felting but her forte is needle felting. She lives at Gundowring in the Kiewa Valley.


Cyril Lieschke

Cyril has had a life-time involvement with the breeding of coloured sheep from his property in Henty, NSW. Through extensive travels overseas he has sent coloured fleeces to craftspeople in many countries including England, USA, Japan. His knowledge of sheep husbandry, wool classing and judging of sheep and fleeces has generously been shared with other breeders of coloured sheep.

 Diane Profile Photo - VT Market

Diane MacKenzie

Diane has a wealth of knowledge about craft, having trained as an art teacher (with Marion Stewart) and taught in primary schools and overseas during her career.

Her latest passion is scrumbling and she continues to paint, crochet and spin.

Diane has recently moved to Wangaratta after living for some time in Avoca and has quickly become involved with local spinners both here and in Shepparton.

Her crafts can be found at the NEY market stalls and at the Glenrowan Gallery 10 to 4 and she is a regular at the Violet Town Market stall, the Wool Day, Bright Autumn Festival and Canberra Celebration of Wool.


Kate Martin

Introduced to felting in 2005, I am constantly learning and experimenting with techniques in felting and embellishing and love working with beautiful merino and silk fibres to produce scarves, wraps, vests and jackets. I love to use used mixed media techniques in my work - printing, painting, felting, hand and machine stitching to obtain exciting and interesting textural surfaces. My most recent direction has been experimenting with eco dyeing, with all dyes and mark making being derived from plants, mainly eucalypts and other natives. One of the joys of my involvement in the textile arts has been networking and sharing with other artists.


Jan Milhinch

Jan is a vigneron from Rutherglen with a passion for coloured sheep. She enjoys the company of her flock of coloured sheep who share the property with her vines. She produces and markets a select line of wool accessories available at her cellar door at Scion Vineyard & Winery. These hand knitted articles are made using both hand spun and mill spun yarns.

 MP - Profile Photo

>Marion Pilley

Marion joined the North East Yarns Group in 2013 when she was still living in Melbourne.

She has had a long standing interest in craft, having started to knit at age 10 and spin in the 1970's when she lived in the North East at Rutherglen and Wahgunyah.

She was involved in a craft shop in Rutherglen during that time called 'Calico and Hessian' run as a cooperative with three other local women and an abundance of local craft people.

Marion has returned to the North East and acquired some very lovely rare breed English Leichester Sheep (and a few Corriedales) that are agisted out near Beechworth.  She is spinning and knitting garments from these fleeces and other NEY yarns, experimenting as she goes.

Marion hopes to build up the quality of her flocks in the near future.

Her handcrafts and garments can be found at the NEY market stalls and at the Glenrowan Gallery 10 to 4 which is open 7 days a week.


Liz Salmon

Liz Salmon is a spinner and the owner of a small flock of sheep. She enjoys producing yarns from her own fleeces but also works in other natural fibres. She has a passion for the colour purple and seems to be able to incorporate this colour into all aspects of her wool craft work which includes spinning, knitting, weaving and felting.


Marion Stewart

Marion is a breeder of coloured sheep and runs a flock of coloured Corriedales at Wangandary, near Wangaratta. She produces fleeces for craft use in a wide range of natural colours. Her craft interests are spinning and weaving. She uses natural fibres in her weaving and incorporates handspun yarns in her fabrics.


Barbara Tatterson

Barbara is a very skilled craftswoman in many fields but has a particular love of spinning. She works with natural coloured fleece and combines this with hand spun yarns dyed with natural materials to produce knitted beanies with multi-coloured patterns.


Marree Vinnicombe

Marree Vinnicombe is an experienced breeder, exhibitor and judge of coloured sheep. She has an extensive knowledge of wool and specifically the suitability of various fleeces from various breeds for craft use. Her own flock of coloured Corriedales produces high quality fleeces in a range of colours for the craft market.


Erin Whitford

Erin’s passion is for hand felting and her skills result in superb nuno felted articles using exotic fibres on silk. She uses combinations of alpaca, silk and merino in her work. Her flair for colour and design ensure that her one-off shawls and scarves are fashion accessories.