Karen FrickeMy medium is fabric, my method is quilting, and the source of my inspiration is frequently the written word. It may be a poem, a quotation, a prayer. The thoughts and feelings ignited by those words form mental images, which I sketch first on paper, and refine until I am satisfied with the design. The sketch becomes my working pattern, and I employ a wide variety of methods for creating the image in fabric, from traditional piecing and appliqué to raw edge applications. I frequently embellish my quilts with reverse bobbin embroidery and hand beading. I finish all my quilts with hand-guided quilting on my long-arm machine, using abstract, thematic motifs inspired by the words and images that first caught my attention. I enjoy sharing my interest in art quilts as an instructor and lecturer, and as the author of numerous articles for quilting and sewing magazines.

Image Gallery:

Publications and Appearances:

Awards and Recognitions:

  • “I Don’t Wear Hats, But I’m Fine with My Tiara” self-portrait quilt included in Cate Coulacos Prato’s book, Mixed-Media Self-Portraits; Inspiration and Techniques, published by Interweave Press, 2008.
    (Purchase book)
  • Quilt selected for the 2008 Quilting Arts Magazine Calendar
  • Quilt selected for 2006 International Touring Exhibition “Tactile Architecture”
  • Quilt selected for 2006 Hoffman International Touring Exhibition
  • Self-portrait quilt published in Quilting Arts Magazine Winter 2005, Issue 20
  • Review of Touchstone Gallery exhibit in Washington, DC, includes write up of my quilt in the Examiner Newspaper, August 12 & 13, 2006
  • Feature articles written about my work in Washington Jewish Week, June 23, 2005 and December 24, 2008
  • Prayer Shawl entry received Fiber Art Study Group Award at Creative Crafts Council 25th Bienniel Show

Education: B.A. from Illinois Wesleyan University, 1981.  M.A. from The University of Chicago, 1986.

Profile: 51 years old, married 24 years (!) with four children, ages 23, 21, 16, and 13. Fluent in Spanish and enthusiastic about gardening, walking the dog, and eating out.