I met the assistant to Carleen Hutchins - he works at my local home depot.... I hadn't heard of her before then, so decided to do a search and read about her. Pretty amazing. She was building violins until just before her death at age 98!
Great obit . . . sounds like my kind of woman . . . flying in the face of tradition! I tried to find some other women luthiers and found a good interview with Tish Ciravolo (she's not a luthier, but she is the founder of Daisy Rock Guitars and is still flying in the face of tradition even today- trying to change the future of girls and women playing guitars). That's very inspiring, too. I also came across a picture of a harp guitar made by Kathy Wingert - It took my breath away! I found a site on the Acoustic Guitar Forum that started from the question "Are there any female luthiers out there?" There are quite a few names mentioned in this thread that could be researched individually. One guy gave about 9 names and their websites. OK, women, we have our work cut out for us!