Stories in Cloth with Karen
  • Alcalde, New Mexico, United States
  • 20 hours over 4 days

Stories in Cloth with Karen

Explore how to tell stories through textiles with master artist Karen in Northern New Mexico, near artist Georgia O'Keeffe's former home and studio. Learn to uncover personal themes on cloth through surface design techniques such as dyeing, printing, and stitching as you immerse in the stunning natural beauty of the Land of Enchantment and develop a deeper connection to Native American and Hispanic history.
  • Lunch, Snacks, Coffee, & Tea


One Guest
USD $1750
Additional guest(s) (max 4)
USD $1315

Meet the Artist

Karen is a narrative textile artist who weaves together the ancient world with an imagined future. She learned sewing techniques from her grandmother and mother and trained with renowned textile artists, including Master Weaver Ida Grae. Currently, she is a fellow of the American Craft Council, and her artworks are displayed in major museums across the country.

Karen’s main interest is to create a culturally inclusive textile vocabulary. Her textile practice includes everything from raising animals and processing their fleece to natural dyeing, weaving, embroidery, printmaking, felting, printing, and photo transfer. She merges handwoven textiles, digital prints, embroidery, and hand-dyed fabrics to tell the stories of African American lives and her ancestral heritage.

She is also a futurist. “I use my artwork to examine the past,” she says, “to find solutions to world problems and help guide a path for human survival.” She sees her home and the surrounding New Mexico landscape as one of the most inspiring places to produce art – a perfect setting to explore your own stories in cloth.

VAWAA Includes:

  • Create textile artworks exploring personal themes of family, home or travel.
  • Explore visual and narrative techniques to go from an idea to a finished artwork.
  • Learn surface design techniques such as natural dyeing, shibori, wax resist, overdyeing, printing, and painting.
  • Experiment with stitching on both new and repurposed cloth.
  • A trip to the Museum of International Folk Art and Ghost Ranch.
  • A trip to the village of Chimayo and the Santuario de Chimayó, known for its holy dirt, followed by a true New Mexican lunch at Rancho de Chimayó.
  • If time permits, you can explore wonderful hikes, hot springs and spas nearby on your own.

Explore Alcalde, New Mexico

Alcalde, a quaint town in the Land of Enchantment, sits at a midpoint between Santa Fe, Taos, and Ghost Ranch, once home to Georgia O'Keeffe. It boasts a remarkable history as one of America's oldest inhabited regions, with a diverse cultural legacy influenced by Native American and Hispanic traditions, as well as an exceptional concentration of dinosaur fossils.

This small town serves as an artist's sanctuary, hosting yearly festivities that showcase local culture, traditional music, dance, and cuisine. Nature enthusiasts can revel in O'Keeffe's beloved Red Rock cliffs or partake in fishing, kayaking, and rafting along the nearby Rio Grande River. Alcalde truly provides a peaceful haven for those seeking New Mexico's natural allure, cultural heritage, and outdoor recreational pursuits.

Additional Details

The best time to visit Santa Fe year round with beautiful landscapes and light. Late spring and fall offer the mildest weather and fewer crowds. Summer has the most activities and events, along with the highest number of visitors.

This VAWAA can be extended for up to 10 days. Please ask when you submit your booking request.

The studio is wheelchair accessible and sessions can be adapted for individuals with special needs upon request.

Karen speaks English.
Karen's Availability 4 days

Guest Reviews

  • Debora G., United States

    Karen welcomed me into her studio and gave me the inspiration to be more free and creative with weaving. She shared some of the different techniques she uses in her art and let me experiment with trying some of them myself. She also told me the many layered history of the area she lives in and took me out to dramatic areas of rock formations and light that have inspired other artists to create. Read more