Monday, July 20, 2015

Sacred Threads - A Little Bird Told Me

I've been remiss in blogging about this year's wonderful Sacred Threads exhibit. We were out of town for most of the duration of the show, but I was delighted to go Friday morning and record an interview for Quilter's SOS and, more importantly, look at the exhibit. I didn't expect to be as moved as I was; it was a remarkable experience.

As I wandered through the exhibit several other quilters were being filmed for their interviews. Hearing the stories of the quilts in their own words and voices was wonderful. There was also an audio tour, available by phone, and again hearing the voices of the artists made the exhibit even more meaningful.

I had two quilts in the exhibit, California Dreaming, which I've blogged about before, and a new quilt made expressly to enter in Sacred Threads. It's called A Little Bird Told Me.
A Little Bird Told Me copyright 2015 Diane Rusin Doran

Detail, A Little Bird Told Me copyright 2015 Diane Rusin Doran
Here's an approximation of what I recorded for the audio tour for this quilt:

We found out in August 2013 that my mother had malignant melanoma. After months of enduring surgery, infection, infusions, and many hospitalizations for a variety of serious side effects, we knew that most likely she was nearing the end. In May of 2014 I went to stay with her for the weekend, as my father was in the hospital and my mother could not care for herself. She had become more and more forgetful and depressed, but never complained. We finally took her off one of her medications, for cholesterol, and it seemed to really perk her up. She was still somewhat forgetful, but so pleasant to be around. That weekend, to my surprise, she took me up on my suggestion to go for a walk in the park behind her house. It was a stunningly beautiful, perfect spring day, glowing with light and new growth. As we walked, I realized that it almost seemed as if she were already in heaven, and I was visiting her there. It was a dreamlike experience, and I’m so grateful not only that I shared it with her, but also that when it happened I had the presence of mind to recognize the beauty of it. This piece represents the glow of that day. The two birds are my mother and I, both blue as that is the color we both wear so much. As a child, when I asked her how she knew something, she often said “a little bird told me”, so that’s why I chose the birds and the title. The buttercups are a melancholy touch, as she could not remember what kind of flower they were and asked me their name during the walk. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Happy Things

A couple of fun and exciting things have happened recently.

- I went to the AQS show in Lancaster. It was wonderful to see so many lovely quilts.

- I won a Judge's Choice award at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival for California Dreaming. Yeah!
California Dreaming copyright Diane Rusin Doran

- I'm so pleased to have two of my quilts (Winter's Tarnish and Return of the Grackle) featured in the April/May issue of Quilting Arts in Jane Davila's article on filler stitching, plus a full page ad for Craft Daily featuring Sunrise Serenade as the backdrop. (All these quilts are on my "Recent Quilts" page.)

- I finished a small quilt! When I find out if it was accepted to the exhibit I entered it in I'll share all the details.

I was so wishing spring would have arrived by now, but alas, this is how it looks in my neck of the woods today:

Here's hoping spring has already sprung for you.

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

NEW Work for FFAC 2015

I am very honored to be an invited artist for "The 100" to be held tomorrow, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 . The goal for this fiber fundraiser for the American Cancer Society is to raise $10,000 in one day.

How? All the details are here:, but here are the basics: On February 4, the first 100 people to contact Virginia Spiegel (Virginia(at) beginning at 10 a.m. Central will be given a link to donate $100 by credit card directly to the American Cancer Society through Fiberart For A Cause.  Each donor will receive an artwork from one of the 100 artists who have generously donated their work. Assignments of artwork will be made using a random number generator. 

I'm sure you will want to be one of the very exclusive 100 patrons who will be randomly assigned artwork from an extraordinary line-up of international fiber artists. 

Here is my contribution, Leaves/Reflections 1
Leaves/Reflections 1, © Diane Rusin Doran 2015
11.5 x 11.25 inches
Digital collage, Machine quilting

Fiberart For A Cause has already raised $240,000 through the generosity of fiber artists and patrons. I've been a participant several times before. This year I especially wanted to contribute, but at the same time it was very difficult for me. This is the first piece I've made since May of 2014.
Detail Leaves/Reflections 1 ©Diane Rusin Doran 2015

My mother was diagnosed with metastatic Melanoma in August of 2013. She had surgery that fall, and we rejoiced when it seemed that it was "only" stage 3. Unfortunately, in February of 2014 we learned that the disease had spread further. The months between then and her death on July 8 were a blur of doctor's appointments, infusions, and emergency room visits. My brother, sister and I tried to go to as many of these with our parents as we could, and we counted ourselves lucky to be able to do so.  

I've seen the impact of cancer on other family members, but this was truly overwhelming. I hope that by doing my small part I can help just a little to prevent someone else from going through something like this. I don't want anyone else to have to miss their mom the way that I miss mine, or watch her go through so much.

To preview some of the other artwork go to our Pinterest board, .

Thank you!