The Secret Lives of Deans

No embellishment necessary – Dean Karla Zadnik’s latest publication is top notch

Dean Karla Zadnik holding a quilt
Dean Karla Zadnik, OD, PhD

Dean Karla Zadnik, OD, PhD, has more than 170 scientific publications to her credit, and although her latest piece might not line up with her established pattern of vision research, it’s spectacular in its own right.

The April 2022 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting featured a 10-page spread on Stitched Together, an original pattern Dean Zadnik wrote from scratch for the local Common Threads Quilt Guild, of which she was president in 2020 and 2021.

At the project’s inception in January 2020, the original name of the quilt pattern was Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, but evolved to Stitched Together as the project picked up steam in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. The intricate pattern featured diverse girls and evoked feelings of teaching and helping. Detailed step-by-step instructions were revealed to guild members monthly, and quilters met over Zoom to share their progress and talk about challenges and lessons learned.

“I am a huge believer in hobbies as wellness – something beyond work and family that you deeply care about,” explained Dean Zadnik, who began quilting in 1998.

“Activities like this bring quilt guild members together to work on a common project,” Dean Zadnik said. “Probably 30 people have made the quilt already, and the feedback I’ve received throughout the project has been wonderful. American Patchwork & Quilting is like the Science or Nature of the quilting world, and it is humbling to know that this pattern will reach its extensive readership.”

Copies of the April 2022 edition of American Patchwork & Quilting may be purchased at