"My work fills me with joy. It lets me express my ideas in colorful designs."
"I'm Maria Eugenia Diaz Franco but my friends know me as Maru Diaz. The opportunity to show my talent has been challenging. It brings a lot of responsibility because a person never stops acquiring all the knowledge and techniques that this implies. It's necessary to continue learning, to stay up to date and, in my case, I continue taking classes so I'll be able to find new ideas while working in this wonderful handcrafted art.
"I learned how to work with textiles thanks to a very special person in the community. Since then, I also teach and train others who want to learn.
"My work fills me with joy. It lets me express my ideas in colorful designs. But my inspiration comes when I'm looking at an infinite variety of fabrics and their textures. Sometimes, I re-use fabric scraps from other projects in order to give life to other prints. Then I'm able to visualize the shapes and figures that will become new designs with distinctive rustic touches.
"My husband and daughter have been a fundamental part of this project and, despite the challenges that have come up, I've been able to make my work known. Finally, I love to see the expressions of the people who buy my designs.
"At the moment, my plans are focused on my work. I want to be able to create jobs for women who can sew and appliqué at home while looking after their families. I'd like to find new points of sales in different markets — even on the Internet — so that more people can see my work."