Meet the team

 

Kate Dewmartin; founder

I grew up in a craft business as my parents were rocking horse makers. After several years of marketing jobs in France and London,  I moved to Pembrokeshire and set up CraftCourses, which has come to feel a little like my fourth child.. 

I believe that making and doing is good for our health and happiness. Whilst creating beautiful and useful things, we relax... we enjoy the sensations of colour and texture, we go into 'flow' state. Later on, we get enormous satisfaction from being able to say 'I made that’. Our purpose is to help as many people as possible access that fantastic feeling.

My role at CraftCourses is to create an excellent and useful platform for makers, whether they be at the learning or teaching end.

Likes: family life, nature, music

Dislikes: timetables (and times tables)

Favourite craft: leatherwork

Kate Dewmartin

 

Suki Baynton; customer relations

Having been lucky enough to grow up surrounded by creativity from wood working and sketching to poetry, singing and musical instruments, I can honestly say that I live and breathe crafts and embrace new lessons every day.  I live on a smallholding with my husband, 2 dogs, 1 cat, 5 goats and lots of chickens and ducks and I love it.  I make jewellery, pottery and soap, grow fruit and vegetables (very badly), take a LOT of photos and cuddle goats. Although my former career was predominantly science-based (much to everyone’s surprise); working with CraftCourses feels like coming home.  

My role at CraftCourses is to look after our tutors and students, providing answers and solutions and guiding them through our service. 

Likes: naughty goats, good books, cwtchy dogs and creative projects

Dislikes: heights, small spaces and rice pudding

Favourite craft: silversmithing is my current passion, but I haven’t met a craft that I don’t like yet!

Suki Baynton

 

Francesca Smith, digital marketing

I live and breathe craft. I absolutely love to experiment with different materials and learn new and exciting skills. I practice mindfulness through creativity and a lot of the materials I use are ‘found’ items from Pembrokeshire’s stunning coastline, so I benefit from the walk and the fresh air too.

My role at CraftCourses is to promote the incredible courses we have available with our amazing array of skilled tutors. I review and edit our website content and tell the world about our makers to inspire others to experience a creative course for themselves.

Likes: Beachcombing, picnics with family, my gorgeous dwarf rabbit, Bruce.

Dislikes: Mushrooms, long-distance running, fruit salads and trifle.

Favourite craft: Too hard to choose!!! Supplies for jewellery making, sewing and crochet take up most of my craft space at home.

Francesca Smith

 

Mark Dobbins; engineer

I love strategizing and solving problems, be they large or small.

I believe that coding is also a craft, and it’s very rewarding to see the results of that work come to life.

My role at CraftCourses is to maintain and improve the software platform

Likes: maps, stars, music, salty licorice, board games, buying spices I’ve never heard of and only later considering what to cook with them, ice hockey, badminton, birdwatching, just generally being outdoors and exploring nature

Dislikes: crowds, daylight savings time

Favourite craft: home brewing, calligraphy – I’m keen to try many more!

Mark Dobbins

 

Magda Powalisz; UX designer & front end engineer

I used to live a life of an indie rock star, but now I simply enjoy chilling with my two lovely cats ;)

I am addicted to learning and always curious about how things work. I guess that’s why I could never commit to one professional area. When I don't learn, read, watch or listen to audiobooks, I like to paddleboard and enjoy outdoor walks and cycling.

My role at CraftCourses is to improve the current website’s user experience and to design and develop new ideas to make it easy and fun for students and tutors to engage and communicate with each other.

Likes: books, paddleboard, bike, bouzouki, bass, food and video games

Dislikes: airports and flying

Favourite craft: cross-stitch and playing fretted instruments

Magda Powalisz

 

Aled Bidder; junior software engineer

I love to learn and am so thankful to have the chance to learn the craft of software engineering with a company that has such a lovely ethos and mission. Alongside my work with CraftCourses, I try to fit in work as an actor and presenter where I can.

My role at CraftCourses is to support the development team in their work while learning as much as I can!

Likes: Learning a new game or system, sports (especially rugby and basketball), and good coffee

Dislikes: Wet socks - nightmare!

Favourite craft: pottery 

 

Aled Bidder

 

David Bowen; engineer 

I am passionate about solving problems and building smooth and sustainable software. I won the Welsh web finals aged 16 which led me to representing the UK in the Web Design category at WorldSkills London 2011, where I gained the highest scoring Medallion of Excellence.

It was at WorldSkills that I met Kate and soon after began building the first iteration of CraftCourses. As luck would have it, I was also based in West Wales, though have since followed my partner Sandra to Sweden.

My role at CraftCourses is to build, develop and maintain the website.

Likes: computer games, animals, Sweden

Dislikes: cats jumping on me when I’m asleep

Favourite craft: figurine painting, wild foraging in my new homeland

David Bowen