Artist of the Month: Gift Shop Featured Artist of the Month: Kathy Kruger

Kathy presenting some of her embroidery creations (Photo by Russell C. Stokes)

Kathy presenting some of her embroidery creations (Photo by Russell C. Stokes)

Linda Whitehead and Russell C. Stokes

This month we’d like you to meet another of our super-talented members, Kathy Kruger. Kathy was born in Illinois and spent most of her life in Moline, an agricultural/industrial/financial community.

Kathy was employed for 30 years at the home office of Modern Woodmen of America (a Fraternal Insurance Company) working 15 years in Data Processing and then in Human Resources specializing in Employee Benefits. While working full-time Kathy also graduated from Western Illinois University! Gary, her husband of 46 years, worked at Modern Woodmen of America for the same 30 years as Kathy.

Upon retirement in 2002, Gary and Kathy left behind the “cold, damp, humid weather of the Midwest and moved to Tucson for its warm, dry climate.”

Kathy’s craft is Machine Embroidery and Quilting. She first began sewing in Junior High School and learned many needle crafts from her mother. She knits, crochets, does cross-stitch, needlepoint, and both hand and machine sewing. After retirement Kathy began to focus on quilting and machine embroidery.

The equipment Kathy uses is a Pfaff Icon embroidery machine, a smaller Pfaff sewing machine, and a Baby Lock serger. Most of her preparation time is given to pattern, fabric, and color selection before she actually begins sewing. Her works “require a great deal of cutting, matching, and piecing.” Kathy’s sewing room is the guest bedroom until visitors arrive and it reassumes its old identity.

Much of Kathy’s meticulous work includes finely embroidered items with colorful Southwest images. Many of her kitchen towels have sayings that will make you laugh and make great gifts. Decorate your own table with fabulous Kokopelli napkins as well as other fun patterns, all with vibrant colors on lovely cloth material. Her denim shirts and sweatshirts truly represent our beautiful desert community.

Kathy describes herself as an organized, logic-oriented person who enjoys combining design and pattern with technology in her chosen hobby. She finds sewing a relaxing and peaceful way to spend time. 

“I hope my products make people smile and give them happiness!” Kathy said.

Kathy joined the SaddleBrooke Gift Shop in 2005 and was amazed at the artistic talent of other members. She joined because after doing projects for her home and her friends, she “wanted to share her work with the community.” 

“[I] enjoy meeting the gift shop customers and have a wonderful time talking to people from all areas of this country and occasionally from other countries,” Kathy said.

She appreciates the imaginative creativity of our artists. 

“It’s really a treat to see the outstanding products our people offer!” she said.

Currently, Kathy is the hardworking Gift Shop Club Accountant who compiles sales records and does the monthly checks. Prior to this she was Assistant Manager of the shop.

See Kathy’s exquisite work at the SaddleBrooke Gift Shop located next to the Fitness Center in SaddleBrooke One. Current hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.