Barbara Zaretsky and Cara May
BZDesign, Cloth Fiber Workshop and Cara May Knits

Studio 104,
828.505.2958, 828.215.9809,,

Barbara Zaretsky: creates handcrafted decorative textiles for home and wardrobe. Her plant based dyes impart a distinctive earthy palette, yet her motifs veer toward the modern. The unexpected blend of the two influences is a hallmark of her approach, which equally honors graphic geometry and fluid, imprecise edges. 

Barbara, is a textile artist and the director of Cloth Fiber Workshop, a textile arts learning center. Originally from the Chicago area, she studied textile design at Northern Illinois University and the Art Institute of Chicago, and Art History at the University of Illinois, continuing her education at Penland School of Crafts. A member of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, Barbara was named one of the top five designers in Asheville by Southern Living magazine. Barbara has many pieces in private collections across the U.S. and abroad and her work has appeared in Victoria magazine, Metropolis, Southern Living, Our State and other regional, national and trade publications and blogs.

Cara May: Creativity and beauty are a vital part of our lives. Natural, raw beauty touches our souls in rare and magical ways and transforms us and our world. It is essential to our very cores.

Knitting becomes increasingly intuitive to Cara as she has grown well beyond the age of 8 when she began to pursue "perfection" in the craft. Cursing her mistakes or sobbing while unraveling hours of work has morphed into intrigue by the opportunities offered by a dropped stitch, and random dye lot, a perceived mishap. She finds peace and joy in that space, quietly crossing barriers between fashion, craft, perhaps art.

Small batch artisanal production - her pieces are understated natural fiber creations. The subtlety of each piece belies unique textures, remarkable fibers and sculptural shapes. She often includes silk-wrapped stainless steel into her sweaters, lending a crumpled memory to her fabrics. Cara handcrafts every garment from start to finish - selecting yarns (mostly from Japan), designing, knitting, felting, sewing seams, blocking finished pieces, (or not blocking, just leaving deliciously crushed, distressed, & deconstructed). Asymmetrical, artsy & offbeat, yet subtle - these are simple pieces that don't scream, but somehow stand out in their effortlessness.