In Memory – Marilyn aka Pandagirl

In Memory – Marilyn aka Pandagirl

It is with great sadness that I am writing this post. I was notified that Marilyn, aka Pandagirl, died from complications of a respiratory illness, while recently visiting her family in California. I emailed her husband Craig and expressed our condolences from The Felting and Fiber Studio. He kindly gave his permission for me to write a post in memory of Marilyn.

Marilyn joined The Felting and Fiber Studio forum in June of 2013, where she has written almost 5,000 posts. When one of our original members stepped down, Marilyn joined our team and posted to the website here for five years (March 2014 – April 2019). She had a background in marketing and wrote quite a few posts about how to market artwork and gave some great ideas on boosting small businesses like many of us run.

In Marilyn’s first post, she introduced herself and talked about her fascination with textures. I think a lot of fiber artists have that inclination to be a “hands on” type of person and Marilyn showed us many different fiber textures over the course of her posts.

Marilyn’s work ranged from Easter baskets, nuno felting, felt bags, dyeing, surface design, 3D pods, creating her own hand carded batts, and many felt pictures. She often made gifts for her family members and even one for her retiring physician (wine bottle cover above).

When I asked our other members about their memories of Marilyn, I heard over and over how kind and thoughtful she was. I have included their comments below, interspersed with photos of Marilyn’s work.

“I remember Marilyn from my first postings on the Forum, she was always very present and generous in her suggestions.” Caterina

“She will be missed. Marilyn always contributed to TFFS, either in her posts or with her thoughtful comments.” Antje
“It was only last week that I was wondering how Marilyn was.  Soon after I joined the Studio, I remember a post from her mentioning that she was not well.  Having delved into the archives from time to time, I have come across her posts and I remember that they were always very upbeat and interesting.” Ann B.
“Marilyn was an enthusiastic felter (one of her many talents) and she made beautiful items – many of which were gifts for her family in California. She was always cheerful and very encouraging in her comments on all members efforts. She will be sadly missed by many.” Lyn & Annie
“It was always lovely to see Marilyn at our gatherings, always cheerful and bright.   I briefly knew her through social media (Facebook).   She came across as a beautiful person with family at the centre of her universe.” Helene
“I’m heartbroken to hear that Marilyn passed away. She and I used to exchange emails occasionally, talking about our lives and exchanging news. She always had lovely photos of her grandchildren to share and made me feel a little like I was part of her family life. Marilyn was a lovely human being, always ready to help and always upbeat (even when her illness was taking its toll). I’ll miss her dearly. She’s actually the reason I started blogging with TFFS, so she could have some time off – so Marilyn is the reason I got closer to you wonderful people :)” Leonor
“I remember Marilyn as much for her encouragement as for her interesting and inspiring posts. When I first started felting and discovered this wonderful online community she was so supportive. No matter how crude my early attempts with fibre were Marilyn always responded with a positive comment and that encouraged me to continue trying!” Karen
“This is very sad news, Marilyn was such a lovely person, always cheerful, kind and generous, she will be sorely missed. She was the inspiration behind this watercolour sketch from 2018, may she always be happy and smiling.”  Teri
“She was always so positive and encouraging in her kind comments that I felt I got to know her a little as a kind, loving and generous person.” Lindsay W.
Marilyn will be missed by us all. If you have memories of Marilyn or wish to express your condolences to her family, please leave us a comment. If you would like to read more of Marilyn’s posts, use the search function on the right side bar using “Marilyn Aka Pandagirl” and her posts will come up.

32 thoughts on “In Memory – Marilyn aka Pandagirl

  1. So very sorry to hear about it! I remember her being very positive and supportive from forum years ago, We followed each other on Facebook and I was sure that she was recovering. So sad…

  2. Seeing the photo of the bootees reminded us that Marilyn had a lot of stamina and determination with her felting – when she set her mind on making something – it happened! Her creative work was varied and always interesting.
    Marilyn gave good business advice and was always positive and helpful with any comment she left.
    Our hearts go out to Marilyn’s family at this very sad time.

    1. Thanks Lyn and Annie, I had actually forgotten about the booties until I was looking through the photos. What a load of work that was!

  3. Marilyn’s legacy will extend beyond her beloved family, to all of us who read, and were influenced by, her interesting and informative posts – reflecting both her wide experience, amazing energy and humour.

    She was always there to support and promote our organisation, generously giving advice to us if we requested it, forever encouraging our endeavours.

    It is hard to believe she will no longer be amongst us, but I’m sure she will be the whisper in our heads, particularly when we are floundering with decisions.

    Yes, my heart goes out to her family at this sad time, but it carries a wish that they remember and share all the memories with a smile.

  4. I was in tears before I’d got past the first paragraph. Why is it we always seem to loose the best people before their time and the rotten ones seem to live for ever?
    I joined too late to see Marilyn’s posts first time round, but I’m glad that they are in the archives for us to go back to.
    A sad time for Marilyn’s family, but if they remember only the good times with her it will help to heal a sore heart in time.

  5. So sorry to hear this, condolences to Marilyn’s family and friends and to all who knew her.

  6. I’m so glad to have met Marilyn, even if was “just” online (we had plans to meet in person one day but sadly that never materialised). She was such a lovely human, and I’ll miss her dearly.

    This was a lovely memorial, Ruth. Thanks so much for writing it and honouring Marilyn’s memory and spirit.

  7. This is a lovely tribute Ruth and thank you for giving the rest of us the opportunity to contribute.
    I hope Marilyn’s family will take some comfort from knowing just how much she meant to everyone in the group.

  8. Marilyn will be so missed. I loved reading her posts and she was such a friendly presence within the online fiber arts community. My best wishes to her family.

  9. A beautiful post celebrating Marilyn’s memory, and her interactions with you all. She made such wonderful art and felt. RIP.

  10. A sad turn of events, she had seemed to be getting better. I am glad she got to see her family before she passed. It was great to have become friends with her through the blog and the forum. She was always so up beat.

  11. So sad to hear this, but thanks Ruth for a very nice post showing how much she meant to so many of us. Marilyn was such a lovely, generous and supportive person. I will truly miss our correspondence, not only about felting but about anything and everything. My thoughts go to her family. She will be so very missed.

  12. Thank you Ruth for putting together such a beautiful and sensitive tribute to Marilyn.
    I thought I would spend a little time with Marylin’s posts this evening. As I have relatively recently joined the group I wanted to spend this time getting to know the Marilyn as the prolific creator she was. The beauty of her works have touched me deeply. May she rest in peace.

  13. I am Marilyn’s sister! Thank you for this wonderful memorial and tribute to my sister. I will cherish the kindness all you have displayed by remembering my sister this way. Thank you for enriching her life with something she truly loved. Lorraine

    1. Lorraine, I am glad that you are pleased with the memorial post. As you can see by the comments, Marilyn touched many lives with her enthusiasm for the fiber arts. We will miss her. Our condolences to you and your family.

  14. So very saddened to read of her passing. She and her posts will be greatly missed. Prayers to her family.

  15. This is such heart-breaking news 🙁 It’s a lovely tribute to Marilyn, Ruth, and I agree whole-heartedly with the comments that Marilyn was thoughtful, kind and generous. She was the same ‘Behind the scenes’, even when she wasn’t in the best of health herself, she would offer to fill-in for one of us if we couldn’t post on our scheduled day, and try to find guest posters to help us out when she couldn’t post. She was always really generous with her knowledge and advice both here and on the forum, and very generous and eager to share when we had fibre swaps and gift exchanges or giveaways. She often talked about her family, and shared with us the gifts she made for them. I hope they know how much they meant to her, and get some comfort in knowing how much she meant to us.

We'd love to hear your thoughts!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: