Hi! My name is Diane Bohn. Thanks for stopping by my shop and checking out my patterns! I hope you love everything you find!
Before I created From Blank Pages, LC, I was a stay-at-home mom raising 2 beautiful boys, and working on my Etsy shop selling handmade kids toys while my husband worked his way through his masters degree.
Then one day I started having a lot of health problems. I was pregnant with my third baby and was put on bed rest for the last 3 weeks of the pregnancy. After I had her the health problems continued, as well as bouts of postpartum depression and intense anxiety. While the health problems, anxiety and depression have come and gone over the years, I have continued to immerse myself in my quilting and my business to an overwhelming degree.
I was concerned that spending so much time in my new hobby of quilting would take away from my family and be a negative factor in my life. I got to a point where I hated quilting. I resented it for being a distraction from my family and friends, and from living the life I wanted.
But then as I looked back over the years, I realized that it wasn’t the quilting that was the problem. Over the years I dealt with a lot of different things from health issues, poor mental health, overcoming and resolving past issues from my childhood, and struggling in my marriage because of the stress of everything else going on. As I reflected on these things I realized that while quilting was closely intertwined into all of these negative experiences in my life, it was the quilting that actually carried me through them. Quilting truly had been my therapy and my life boat. The creative process of quilting and designing patterns kept me afloat, keeping me from spiraling down the pit that depression can be. It gave me an outlet to connect with others with similar interests at times when I wasn’t able to leave the house. It has given me opportunities to serve others and to share my love with people who have experienced grief and/or illness as I’ve been able to send out charity quilts and work with others in doing so. Instead of it keeping me from living like I had thought it had done, it helped me to live and experience life despite my struggles and in a way that I wouldn’t have experienced otherwise. Not only did it help me reach out and connect with others, it helped me to connect to myself in creative and powerful ways, helping me see the beauty that has always been inside myself.
I decided to set out to create the most versatile patterns for the most creative and unique individuals across the world. Patterns that, like they did for me, will provide the creative outlet to help them enjoy life more fully.
It turns out, the road was more difficult than I imagined.
Trying to establish a successful business one handed was wearing me into the ground. It took so much time and energy, that after also caring for my family, I didn’t feel like I was able to take care of myself, which led to a whole new set of health problems. I also didn’t know the best way to get my patterns out there and let others know of the creative possibilities of each pattern, helping them see how easily they can be customized to fit their own unique style.
I couldn’t keep up with the stress and expectation so I did the most unlikely thing and quite my job. I decided to stop trying to force my passion to be a successful business, and instead focus on the purpose that I started with – to help others and provide a means for them to connect to their own creativity. I also decided to reconnect with the art of quilting in a healthy and positive way. To use it as a means to bless instead of it being a distraction that took away from myself and my family.
At the same time that I quite my job and walked away from my business, I really struggled to find my identity and purpose in life. I lost my confidence in being someone who could help others and make a difference in the world. More than anything, I want to be a light to others and spread the hope and healing that I have found, but I didn’t feel like there was anyway that I could accomplish that. But then I went to a quilt guild meeting in Winnipeg and shared my Celestial Star quilt. The response was overwhelming (and threw my social anxiety through a loop! lol) but the experience made me realize that it doesn’t take a super star to make a difference and lift another person. I realized that when we connect to our own talents and share those with others, we can inspire others and give them the freedom to do the same.
Through it all, I have continued to design and quilt, finding balance and joy in all that I do, and the response has been pure love and support from everyone.