Friday, December 11, 2009

Handmade Showcase: Karla Dornacher

I am absolutely thrilled to present this week's Etsy shop to you: Karla Dornacher. Yes, that Karla Dornacher! I've been a fan of Karla's work for years. She's an illustrator and author with homey, comfortable art and a conversational writing style that I admire so much. A couple of weeks ago I found out she had an Etsy shop featuring some of her artwork, and I immediately marked it as a favorite. The next time I was looking for a shop to feature, hers was at the top of my favorites list, and I thought, "You never know till you ask!" So I sent her a note asking if she'd be interested in being featured on my little blog, and she very graciously replied that she'd love to!

If you're unfamiliar with Karla and her work, here are a few excerpts from her website detailing how she became an artist and author:

I loved to draw as a little girl and more then once, was caught doodling when I should have been doing something "more important!" I always wanted to be an artist when I grew up and even had the opportunity to study graphic art at Southern Illinois University fully paid. But just weeks before I was to leave for school, I fell in love and, with little hesitation, changed my plans from being an artist, to being a wife and mom.

In 1972 we moved from Illinois to the White Salmon, WA area and I got my first taste of country living. I loved it!! It was during the next ten years that I developed my passion for gardening, canning, sewing, and crafting - the creative avenues which helped me express my own personality and my love for my home, family, and friends. It was also during this time, in 1980, when I first met and came to know Jesus Christ as my Savior, Lord and Very Best Friend.

I painted my very first watercolor as a gift for my daughter for her wedding in 1993... seriously, every time I had attempted to paint prior to that, it would all turn to mud! I knew this was the Lord and I was so excited! After much prayer, I decided to create a series of paintings based on and including scripture text. Because God's Word is so visual and the truth of it had truly changed my life, I was both humbled and in awe of what God was doing. Within six months I had six paintings and decided, with much fear and trembling, to attempt to sell my artwork as framed prints through a home party format.

To date, I have written and illustrated sixteen books, but I have to tell you, being a writer was never part of my plan for my life. And even though I wanted to be an artist when I was a little girl, I would have never imagined illustrating so many books of my own and having a collection of products created from my art!

My granddaughter Jessica painted this sweet snowman while visiting at my house a couple of weeks ago. She has agreed to donate 100% of the profits from the sale of her print to support Option 360... a non-profit pregnancy center
that helps women make informed decisions regarding unplanned pregnancies.

Karla's Etsy shop is just the most recent venue she's utilized for her artwork. She also has her own website, Karla Dornacher, where you can buy her books and other products; a blog, where she shares some of her artwork and glimpses into her personal life; a Facebook page, where you can become a fan and interact with other fans; and you can even follow Karla on Twitter!

Thank you, Karla, for so graciously allowing me to feature you here! I was a little bit afraid to write to someone who was so well-known in the world of Christian books and art, but you were so kind and friendly, even at such a busy time. You have been a blessing to me through your books, and now that I know the lady behind them a little better, they're even more of a blessing! God bless you!

Karla even eased my mind and told me how to pronounce her last name! LOL Not knowing how to pronounce something drives me batty, so I figured I'd ask her that too. She didn't think I was strange after all! And in case you're wondering too, it's pronounced door-nuh-ker, with the emphasis on 'door.' So now I can rest, finally knowing how to pronounce Dornacher! ;)

** All images used with permission of Karla Dornacher. **


  1. How fun to "meet" Karla! :) I've always enjoyed her artwork too. It was nice to know how to pronounce her last name - I'm glad you asked!

  2. I enjoyed reading this...I have a couple of her things..she indeed is so talented....
    I will check out her Etsy shop...

  3. Thank you Susan for showcasing my Etsy Shoppe... you are a blessing! I posted links to your blog and etsy and hope you don't mind that I used the image of your Merry Christmas tag to mini-showcase you! Blessings and hugs for a Christmas season full of love, joy and peace in Christ!


  4. Tammy, does it bother you too if you don't know how to pronounce something?! LOL

    Deby, she is indeed very talented. And one of the encouraging things about her life, to me, is that she didn't even start selling her artwork until after her daughter was grown and married. Gives me reassurance that my life is still growing and flourishing even as my children grow up and leave the nest.

    Karla, thank you for stopping by! I don't mind at all that you used my picture, and I sure do appreciate the mention of my blog and shop!

  5. I have been a fan of Karla for a long time also. Have a lot of her books. Loved reading your story.
    Blessings! Sharon


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