LaVera graduated from the Fashion Institute with a degree in Fashion Design. She worked as a designer in New York for eight years before having children. She continued her art education studies at Beau Art in Paris. LaVera has written a quilting book, “Cats, Quilts and Crafts,” published by Krause Publishing. She designs rugs for Le Beau Tapis and has several published art pieces, including, “Dressed for a Night Out”, published in “The William and Mary Review”. She has had numerous shows and exhibits her work frequently.
LaVera has taught art to elementary school students from kindergarten to 5th grade as a volunteer for eight years in the Bellingham school district. She enjoys working with these young students. Besides teaching them art, LaVera works at building self-esteem. She has done everything from a complete puppet show on the Civil War (which included sets, puppets, and props) to simple craft projects like May Day baskets and Sock Snowmen. LaVera presided over the Lowell Elementary “Reflections” PTA art competition for 4 years during which time she transformed the program from a competition into program in which everyone is a winner.
LaVera believes that the process of art should always be a positive, confidence-building experience. She feels that quality of art at the early age levels should not be judged by the final product, but by the joy, effort and time that go into it. LaVera loves to work with teachers to create projects that are unique to what they are teaching.