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I had the pleasure this week to speak to the Embroidery Guild in Manlius. As many of you know, I am an Asian Antique dealer and was on the board of The Asian Arts Society of Australia. With my limited knowledge, the Guild asked me to speak on Chinese textiles. My mentor, Judith Rutherford of Sydney Australia, is one of the leading textile dealers worldwide. Her expertise on Chinese rank badges is well known in the textile community. Judith graciously took a lonely American under her wing and brought her into the Chinese Arts community in Sydney.
On Wednesday, I spoke about one’s passions. Judith started as a collector, became a very respected dealer, author and even went on to be one of the curator’s of an exhibition at The Art Gallery of NSW for Chinese Robes. Judith’s mentoring not only gave me an exceptional education in her field but it also helped to shape my life.
Now, here in Syracuse, I see mentors every day at the store. I am always amazed how people are so eager to share their knowledge and expertise. Every day I see someone who takes the time to comment on someones choices of fibers or volunteers a pattern that would be perfect for that special project. I have watched people blossom into wonderful knitters and crocheters. Their understanding of fibers, color and design grows with their passion. And the community built within this fiber world is as important as any other.
I miss Judith and think of her often. But I am fortunate to have the wonderful people who are associated with the Yarn Cupboard now as friends and mentors.