Karen M. Wertz

Surface Pattern Designer

My grandmother was an excellent seamstress who spent her days in her sewing room. I would visit her often and vividly remember her jars of buttons, boxes of rick rack and bindings, and other notions.

I would sit, watching her go from the sewing machine to the ironing board and back, surrounded by all her colorful fabric. I recall her excitement when she told me about a new type of fabric that would be coming out - polyester. It was innovative at the time, as it didn't need to be ironed.

My grandmother would often take me to Kovak's, a fabric store in downtown Milwaukee that was filled with wonderful brocades, satins, silks, chiffons, taffetas and lots of bright, colorful patterns. I loved to walk around the store touching all the fabrics, and was energized by their color.

I am a lifelong resident of the Milwaukee's North Shore, an area just outside of Milwaukee, WI that runs along Lake Michigan. I spent 17 years of my career in the banking industry and 24 years selling real estate.​ My life has slowed down over the last few years, and I have since pursued my dream of being a surface pattern designer.

As a self-taught designer, I find great joy in creating a visual representation of my life experiences through this wonderful art form. I have thoroughly enjoyed educating myself on the latest trends, design tools, and techniques. Each day brings a new adventure - and new inspirations for unique designs!

In need of custom designs for your business or home?

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