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Kari Bender



I'm Kari Bender and I have been sewing since I came out of the womb.  In March 1993, I took over ownership of the Needle Workshop - needlework was my passion at the time. I opened the Quilting Workshop in 2002 and have since proven to the community that I'm not just a stitcher but also a quilter. 


Much like the building the shops live in, I've had many careers.  This includes working at other craft supply stores, working as a Family and Consumer Education teacher and I have been a jewelry salesperson. My college degrees are in Textiles and Clothing from UW-Madison, and Teaching from UW-Stevens Point. 


I'm passionate about giving to others, so I volunteer at assisted living homes, organize fundraisers for the Wausau Area School Food Pantry, organize quilt drives, teach youth to sew, donate sewing supplies to those in need and much more. When I'm not busy running a business or sewing, you can find me baking, passionately caring about the environment and recycling or spending time with animals. My “floofy” cat Carmel also helps with day to day activities such as sewing, shoveling, driving and picking out the day's outfit.


If you want to know anything else, just ask! 

The Shop

Centrally located close to downtown and the highway lies a little shop with a big personality and selection. The historic 1880s building (which was once a grocery store, pharmacy, and plumbing store) now houses the area's largest selection of needlework patterns, threads, batiks and quilting fabrics. The Needle Workshop carries supplies for cross stitch, counted canvas, needlepoint, hardanger, drawn thread, embroidery, sashiko, wool appliqué, needle punch, knotted rugs and more! The Quilting Workshop has over 4,500 fabrics to choose from and carries flannel, batiks, quilting cotton from top brands, children’s, homespun, over 300 clearance fabrics, thousands of patterns and notions!  The staff is passionate about customer service, crafts, and helping you succeed. Stop in for advice on projects or life, classes, shopping, friendship and inspiration.  

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