The Faces of Skeins

Mary Bennett LilekMary Bennett - Instructor

“I was taught to knit at the age of 10 by one of my grade school teachers (thanks Sr. Shawneen!).  Forty+ years later, I am still enjoying the craft and learning something new all the time!  Our family (husband Ron, son Kyle, and daughter Clare and the two dogs) moved to Michigan in 2004 and I found Skeins on Main and started attending classes.  I began working in the store in 2007.”

Karen Kroll


Karen Kroll - Assistant Manager, Instructor and Customer Service Rep.

I’ve been employed at Skeins on Main for over five years.  I’m an avid knitter and have recently begun teaching beginner knitting classes at Skeins.  I reside in Oakland Township with my husband and German Shepherd, Alta.  We have three children and have recently become empty-nesters.  While my favorite passtime is knitting, I also enjoy gardening, travelling, and working out.”

Cris Platto

Cris Platto - Store Manager

“Hi! I’ve been at Skeins for almost 10 years. I am the Store Manager responsible for drafing and sending the Newsletters and email from Skeins as well as coordinating the inventory and many other things. I am also an instructor on Monday and Wednesday mornings, teach workshops and write patterns (a.k.a. the store ‘Knit Wit’). You may also find me working on the floor or making clay buttons to sell at the store. I love the creativity that surrounds me at Skeins and hope to see you soon so I can share some of that off on you!”



Sharon Brock - Instructor

Sharon believes that one of the best things about knitting is that there is always something new to learn.  Over the last 12 years she has had the opportunity to attend many 1- to 5-day workshops with notable designers/instructors including Melissa Leapman, Cat Bordhi, Lucy Neatby, Beth Brown-Rensel, Jane Thornley, Galena Khmelva, and others, learning both traditional and contemporary techniques.  As a fiber enthusiast, she has also gained proficiency (or at least dabbled in) many related techniques, including crochet, spinning, weaving, Tunisian crochet, wet felting, needle felting, rug hooking, and yarn dying.  As a former music teacher, she feels that it is a good thing to pass along the skills that she has learned from others.

When not knitting or teaching, Sharon is self-employed as a sales representative for various yarn companies.  As a result of her employment, she feels that she now has enough “stash yarn” in her house to qualify it as insulation!

Shelly Buckman - Instructor

“I am a botanist/horticulturalist who hopes to retire to a life of spinning and knitting of the accumulated stash.  I have taught basic to advanced knitting for about five years, and natural dye workshops around the state for five years prior to that.  I have a teacher husband, and a middle school son who always needs rides to every activity he can possibly sign up for.”

Jackie Pettitt - Instructor

“My knitting journey started in the mid-1970’s with my Great Aunt.  It wasn’t long before that wasn’t enough.  I decided I needed more.  I started taking classes and the rest is history.  Challenging myself with different creative knitting artists and learning from them always left me wanting to learn more.

My main career is in the automotive business with GM for more than 28 years, as a designer who details individual pats of the automobile.  This will kind of explain how I challenge myself when it comes to my knitting projects.

I have also taken on a new project.  I’ll take and design a dress made from an old bridesmaid dress by crocheting the upper portion.  This is a big step outside the box.  Always have an open mind and don’t be afraid to take a risk!”