Carole Lake Obituary

At our January meeting, we shared the news of Carole Lake’s passing. Several of her friends spoke up and shared just a few stories of how much she touched people’s lives. In honor of her talent and selfless service to EGA, we’d like to share her obituary here. We send our deepest condolences to her family and friends.

Carole Holmes Lake died January 5, 2024, in Austin Texas following surgery. Born September 14, 1949, Carole was an Austin native who lived a life of great diversity and accomplishment.
Carole was known by many as a “fierce lady and a force to be reckoned with.” She wielded her snappy wit and razor-sharp tongue to stand up for a diverse group of people who were lucky enough to be her friends. She showed her love and generosity with a tireless devotion. She was known for reaching out to anyone who might not have a place to go for a holiday and welcoming them into her home and life as if they had always been there. No matter how she found her friends, when she engaged them, she became a second home.

Carole graduated from Rice University in 1971. Among her great loves and talents was her passion for stitchwork, in which her aptitude was legendary. She generously shared her love of needlework with friends and students. She was a prolific designer, inspirational teacher, and wrote several books with Michael Boren with whom she founded Stitchplay Designs.

She was a much sought after teacher and taught at multiple regional and national seminars for the Embroidery Guild of America (EGA), the American Needlework Guild (ANG), Callaway, and the National Academy of Needlearts (NAN). In addition to teaching her own brilliant designs, she also conceived of and taught color work theory, needlework design and helped countless people with stitch guides to bring their own needlework to life. Her students describe her as a “phenomenal, warm and generous teacher…Smart and witty with a razor-sharp tongue, a great teacher designer, friend, mentor, and an incredibly talented artist.”

Carole gave generously of her time during her career, serving on National and International Needlework Associations, Teaching Certification Committees and as Chair of the EGA South Central Region Seminars in 1991, 2001 and 2011. In 2017, she received the National Academy of Needlearts Lifetime Achievement Award.

Married to her husband, Larry Lake for 48 years, together they created a cherished family in their children, Leslie and Jeffrey, who shared in the joys of her love, sense of humor, generosity, and uncanny ability to make the most unlikely of strangers a devoted friend with ease. The pride and comfort she found in her children and grandchildren cannot be overstated. Her delight in being with her grandchildren was as clear as it was reciprocated.

Carole is survived by her husband Larry, daughter Leslie of Garland, TX, and son Jeffrey, daughter-in-law Corina, and two granddaughters Livia and Lucia of Austin. Also, by brother David Holmes of Houston and sister-in-law Wendy Holmes of Dallas. She was preceded in death by her parents Robert Holmes and Mary Sue Kerbow, and brother Robert Holmes Jr.

We will be honoring Carole with a Celebration of Life held on Saturday January 27 which will be held at 2 pm at The Church of Highland Park, 5206 Balcones Dr., Austin, TX 78731.

Carole was an avid supporter of the Texas Performing Arts. In lieu of flowers donations to the Texas Performing Arts youth program are encouraged to assist in keeping generations to come enjoying the fine arts that Carole so cherished.