Karen Kunz joins a community of quilters to present patterns, appliques, and fine stitching at Quilters Unlimited return show, Metamorphosis: Transformation at LeMoyne Arts.
“Every time I pull a quilt down. I feel like you are hugging me,” says Karen Kunz’s granddaughter. What a gift – to keep your grandmother’s hug in reach forever. For quilter Karen Kunz, that is the true beauty of the art of quilting. ” [A quilt] gives comfort. People know you care,” says Kunz. The history of American quilting reflects that sentiment. Be it as a necessity for surviving the harsh winters experienced by early settlers or as a communal effort to provide warmth to soldiers overseas during World War II, quilting has what Kunz refers to as the “healing and caring aspect” that transforms the maker and the receiver.
Kunz, too, carries her grandmother with her in her sewing, as well as her best friend, who introduced her to quilting in the early 1980s. Each woman’s individual craftsmanship inspired her to find her own aesthetic and process in quilting. A quilt guild meeting set the spark in Kunz that led to a lifelong obsession with patterns and petals. “I was addicted to it. I love the feeling of quilts. I like designing quilts,” exclaims Kunz. “And I love flowers. All my quilts have flowers.” Since then, Kunz has explored the layering of applique quilting and the fascinating effects of flowering patterns. Her work is made to be given away. Kunz will pray over it as she stitches and sews and eventually gives it over to its rightful owner with love and peace. “I’ll give it to them because they’ll cherish it and not make it a dog bed,” chuckles Kunz.
As Kunz relishes retirement, she prepares to travel with her husband and plans to take her quilting anywhere she goes. “Train, plane, or car, I always have hand work, embroidery, or applique work that is going to be in a quilt [with me],” admits Kunz. The mobility of the work should not deter from the delicacy needed to complete a quilt. Kunz points out that preparation is key.
Read the rest of the article on the Tallahassee Democrat.
To learn more about the exhibition Metamorphosis: Transformations feat. Quilters Unlimited