Creative Japan Podcast Episode 2: Patricia Belyea

Patricia Belyea, the co-owner of Okan Arts, graciously accepted my invitation to be a guest on my podcast, and I couldn't have been more thrilled. She brought us back to her quilting and Japanese textile "origin" stories, shared the organic way in which her business grew and evolved over the years, and explained how her daughter Victoria became her business partner. 

My biggest take away after the interview, was a feeling of hope and empowerment. She did not visit Japan for the first time until she was 50, and made her first quilt at the age of 53. A business was not even in the picture in the beginning-- so anytime I feel like I am "behind" in my creative endeavors, I will think of Patricia and be reminded that I have plenty of time to keep learning, growing and that I do not have to fit into an existing box!

Patricia is a creative quilt maker, speaker and teacher. She co-owns Okan Arts with her daughter Victoria. The small family business imports vintage Japanese textiles for adventuresome quilters. Patricia is the author of East-Meets-West Quilts, a book about making improv quilts with Japanese fabrics.

These days, Patricia and Victoria are busy leading textile tours to Japan! To learn more about Patricia and Victoria, visit or follow Okan Arts on social media @okanarts. 


The podcast episode is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, as well as a video version on Youtube Podcasts.