Serious randomness...

Honestly, I feel like I have ADD really bad lately.  Far too many things going on at once.  Getting ready for Quilt Market, dealing with the demands at my "day job" as we enter into our busy season (heck, when AREN'T we busy?), loads of kids stuff and "issues" with school. Hard to keep focus on any one thing for very long.  Ya know, like hard to blog about just one thing because I write a sentence and soon enough my mind is already thinking about what else needs to be done next...

So here's to all kinds of randomness...I got back all of our fab photos from our shoot from a few weeks ago...today I'm touching up the Madison pattern text and couldn't wait to share with you the cute and adorable Cait who is gracing the cover!  Isn't she a doll?!  And a future teacher too...just as sweet on the inside as she is on the outside.  Love her!

And then Uncle Mel, love him too.  He's been working on some "manly things" for our Quilt Market booth.

And I had to finish up one of the Madison bags because I wanted some new photos for the pattern...just wasn't feeling the ones I had.  So...now I have a design sample of the Madison.  Probably gonna list it in my etsy shop soon unless anyone wants first dibs at it!

xoxo,

Trish

Say hello to a few amazing crafters...

Continuing on with "holla" out to my girls who helped test patterns for me.  Geniune, lovely, creative and talented describes these ladies.  I love to see what they are coming up with next and watch their adorable kids grow.

Paige Hill is the talented lady who works in marketing for Where Women Create, the magazine.  We "met" online almost a year ago now.  Paige has been a really great supporter of my art - offering me features on both the WWC blog as well as inviting me to guest blog on the Creative Connection Event site. This fabulous event that is being put on by WWC is full of the most awesome stuff ever.  Session after session with fabulous artists who get to craft along with.  I'm still crossing my fingers I can go (it's in September - I'm also hoping to hit up Houston in October for Quilt Market so not sure I can leave the gardener at home that much.  Men don't multi task for long very well.  A day, maybe.  More than one...I worry about his sanity).

Paige is a fantastic artist herself and a published author.  Her version of the Patsy Ann Apron top included ric rac, a posie and more.  See her blog for all the details!

KIMBERLY VOJACEK is another wonderfully talented pattern tester.  Kimberly doesn't blog or have a shop - she just sews for her own children and was so kind to help me out.  Kimberly shares a little about herself with us..."I am a mother of two beautiful girls, 8 and 10 years old.  I work part-time for St. Stephen's Community House as a Volunteer Coordinator.  Most of my time is spent with the girls and their many activities.  I do enjoy crafting - scrapbook, cardmaking, cross-stitching, sewing, and my new craft, crochet!!  I am very passionate about raising my two girls to be compassionate, independent and responsible women.  I believe that being their mother is the most important job I have!"

Nikki Rainey is also known as "Madame Crafty"... a name her husband has bestowed upon her and for good reason.  She is all kinds of crafty and shares a bit about herself here...

Nikki Rainey has been a military wife for almost 14 years and takes her home business with her wherever she goes with her Army husband.  Family is most important to her. Her business includes everyone in the family and makes it possible for them to spend most of their time together.  She has been teaching various craft and quilting classes for over 10 years. She has her own quilting business, NikKitty Quilting & Design , as well as a beading party business. Nikki and her husband just updated their long-arm quilting machine to one of the uber-cool Gammill Statler models. Nikki likes to blog about her quilting and blogs about it here on her blog.  She enjoys pattern designing as well as customizing other patterns.

Two Peas in a Pod was her first experience pattern testing for someone else. Always in the past someone has been pattern testing for her.  She says this experience was a lot of fun!

Her husband likes to make quilting tools out of wood. He makes seam rippers, stilettos, crochet hooks, and also nice writing pens on his lathe. You can see his work in their etsy shop. http://www.etsy.com/shop/nrnoodle

Nikki tested the Madison bag for me...and hers is so cute.  You'll have to pop in over here and tell her so yourself!

I still have a few more wonderful friends I'll be featuring over the next couple of weeks.  Can't thank you all enough for testing for me - I'm very blessed to have your input!

xoxo,

Trish

The Evolution of a bag

First, one last reminder, TODAY JANUARY 20th - is the last day to enter the wonderful giveaway from Honeyrun Farms. So, don't forget to go HERE to enter!

I have to tell ya - I'm really, really tired.  I've had sick kids.  Not sick all at once.  Just nice and evenly spaced so that somebody seems to be sick every week for going on 6 weeks or so now.  And I just am not getting things done.

And no where near enough sleep.

If you've emailed me and I haven't responded yet, I'm sorry.  I will.

If you called me, (my sister - mostly) and I haven't called you back, I love ya and I will, soon.  I'm either running around or...too tired to talk.  Sorry.

If you left a comment here on the blog and I didn't respond, I'm sorry.  I will try to go back and visit everyone.

If you've asked me to do something and you are waiting, ask me again (Julia - I haven't forgotten you, I swear!  I just reordered some fabric for your bag - I have an idea!).  It may still be on "my schedule" but delayed because everyday, it seems like my entire days' plan gets tossed out the window for one reason or another.  Mostly one tiny one - who I decided I would now refer to as "Sprout".  (The "two peas" = twins, "sprout" - the baby).

Seems like my free time to "work" on the blog and sewing and all has become non-existent or only after 9pm.  Bummer.

I don't like being behind or keeping people waiting or letting things fall.  As I told my husband the other night - "I'm just trying to keep all the plates spinning" and I don't always make that happen.  A few eventually fall.  My apologies if your plate was one I've let drop.

Enough of that.  Let's talk bags.

Let me re-introduce you to an old friend.

This...is "Madison"

Madison has been around for quite awhile.  All of my bags are "original" patterns.  I use that term loosely because "original" and purses - is there really anything "new" you can do in bags anymore?  It's all been done.  But you get inspired, you twist and turn and create it into something unique to you.  And it keeps evolving.  Like Madison.

Up above, all decked out in Heather Bailey prints - she sports a little a pleat in the middle.

From there, a customer asked if I could add some front pockets just like a bag she saw from a famous maker whose initials are "VB" and whose bags adorn the shoulder of every college girl in america.

Well, here's Madison with that pocket request...minus her center pleat.  (And I free hand draw all of my patterns - mostly on gift wrap.  The kind with the grids on the back - helps me get things straight)

Love these Joel Dewberry prints...I still have some stashed away. They have since retired this design

Well, from there, I decided I would make my Mom this bag.  Only, I liked the little dart that my neighbor Barb found on a bag pattern which gives some depth to the bag.  So, I tried it on Madison.  And made my Mom this for Christmas.

Madison with no pleat, added dart and an applique bird and flower pin

Well, I was thinking.  I'd like to try that bag but I like to have a flap or a zipper on mine.  I've done lots of flaps - on my "Olivia" bags.

I've been making split face flap bags for - years. 4 years actually - since 2006. I just like the subtle patchwork feel of it.

So I thought - Madison plus Olivia - a Madison bag with a flap.  And I found a bunch of pins on sale after Christmas.  I made little clutches for my family for the holidays and had used these pins.  I have more left over and added one to this bag.  Here's where the evolution of the Madison has landed at the moment...

Here she is...Madison with darts and a flap...

I think I like her.  The first "new" bag of 2010.  I'm going to carry her around for a few days and see how she does before I offer her for sale at my trunk shows.

Before I bore you with all of this and leave YOU falling asleep...have you visited  Craft Hope for Haiti yet over on etsy?  They have been collecting all kinds of crafty donations and selling them with the proceeds to benefit Doctors without Borders.

I have one of these over there...soon.

Hope you'll take a moment to stop over there and shop.  And if you must...come over to my shop and grab an owl clutch for yourself.  (I'm loading a few this evening - morning now I guess.  Sheezzz!  This is why I'm tired. It's 2am!).

See you Friday for the Honeyrun Farms giveaway winner announcement AND a little something special for YOU!

xoxo,

Trish

So in Sew withdrawl...

I'm experiencing a little bit of "sewing withdrawl". See, I'm used to working under intense pressure, too many orders, deadlines and have heaping amounts of anxiety to get it all done.

But in my New Year's resolutions - I'm "scheduling" my work better.  Being more careful about the work I take on.  Trying NOT to drive my family crazy with my um, craziness.

SO, without all of that pressure - I'm kind of sewing at a slow steady pace.  Churning a little bit out at a time.  This.  That.  The other.  I'm even making myself...a jacket.  It might not be done until it snows again next year but at least I'm doing a few "me" projects that don't involve marketing, advertising and sales.  Ahhh...that feels nice.

Wanna see what I have been casually stitching on?

See?  That's like nothing.  I've got a few more things in the works...

Just gonna enjoy the slow ride while I can...oh yeah.  You got anything interesting going on in your sewing room?

xoxo,

Trish

make it monday {patchwork wristlet}

Make it Monday - Trish Preston - Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs

The Patchwork Wristlet - January 2010

Are you ready?  Here we go...

New for 2010, I will be hosting "make it monday" "sew it up sunday" (I'll explain the change later!) at the top of every month. Make it Monday Sew it Up Sunday is your opportunity to make something with me.  I'll have the complete instructions for you here on my blog.

In addition, if you're feeling pressed for time and want to sew along with us but don't have the time to put it all together, I'll have a limited number of kits prepared for you.  HERE in my etsy shop, you will find a handful of these projects all cut and ready to be sewn for you under the make it monday sew it sunday category.  Neatly packaged and ready to ship but only available for a very limited time.

Let's sew!

To start off the new year, a patchwork wristlet. You can adorn the front with a brooch, a buckle, a button, a yo-yo - be creative!   Read through all of the instructions first before beginning.

Here's what you'll need fabric wise besides all the typical sewing do-dads:

  • 5 strips of fabric cut 2" x 6.5"
  • a piece of fabric cut roughly 8.25" x 6.5" for the rear exterior.  I usually wait to cut this - using my top panel as my pattern.
  • 2 pieces of heavy fusible fleece interfacing cut 7.5" x 5.25" give or take.  You just want this to be about 1/2" smaller than the piece you are fusing it to.
  • a strap cut 2" x 14" in length
  • a piece of ribbon for the front of the wristlet
  • prequilted cotton, corduroy or heavy home dec fabric for the interior OR you can choose a quilting cotton.  Cut 2 approximately 8.25" x 6.5" (I usually do not cut my interior until I get my top pieced - then I use that top as my pattern to cut the exterior back and the interior pieces.  If you use a heavy fabric, you don't need to interface it.  If you choose to use a quilting cotton, you will want to interface it.
  • your embellishment for the front
  • 7" or 9" zipper

  1. Using 1/4" seams, sew your 5 strips of fabric together to construct the front.

3.  Use the top you have just assembled as your pattern.  Lay it on the fabric you chose for the rear exterior and cut out the rear panel.  Then cut out your interior pieces as well.

4.  Fuse the interfacing to the front and rear exterior panels following manufacturers instructions.

5.  Press your strap.  Press the fabric in half.  Open up.  Then press each half in half to the center.  Press in half again.  Stitch down both side of strap.

6.  Topstitch the front panel 1/8" from the edge of each seam / patch.  You can skip this if you want but it looks nice to topstitch.

7.  Stitch on your ribbon to the front panel.

8.  Make a loop with your strip and lay your wrist strap about an inch or so down from the top along the side - matching up raw edges and stitch.

9.  Sewing on your zipper.  I used a 7" zipper however, it is exactly the same size and can be a bit tricky to work with.  If you want a little wiggle room, use a 9" zipper.

10.  With right side up, lay your front panel down on your table.  Take your zipper and lay it right side down.  Take one of your lining pieces and line it up with the front panel and zipper and pin all 3 layers together - making sure everything is even.  Refer to the photo here for this step.

11.  Now flip these out so that your wrong sides are facing together and give it a little press.  Topstitch.

12.  Repeat for the rear panel.  If you're not sure if you have it correct - pin in place and then flip around while pinned so you can check before you sew.  Oh, you knew that!

13.  Don't forget to topstitch again!  When you are all done attaching your zipper it will look like...

14.  NOW...put your right sides together for the exterior panels, pin, and sew all 3 sides using a 1/2" seam allowance.  You'll need to fidget with it a bit, line up your seams along the zipper, push the zipper up a bit...you'll get it.  You want it to come together all nice and neat.

15.  Once you've sewn around those 3 edges, open up your zipper almost all the way.  Now pin the lining panels together, right sides together.  Stitch around all 3 sides and leave an opening in the bottom.  Clip the corners.

16.  Turn your bag.  You'll be pulling it all through the lining opening.  Sew the lining closed and tuck it inside the bag.

You're done.  How's it look?  I added a little ribbon to my zipper for a pull.

Everytime I do something new - it never turns out that great the first go 'round so practice and in a time or two of making these - you'll be a pro!

Do you have any suggestions?  Did you like it?  Did I screw anything up?  (I wouldn't be surprised :>) ) I'd love to hear from you so please - leave me a comment and let me hear from you.

Of course, post your make it monday projects on my Flickr page so we can all take a look at the gems you are creating.

Next months Make it Monday Sew it up Sunday project is full of Valentine sweetness - a doll blanket OR table topper.  I'll be posting the kits for this project in about a week give or take a few days so you can have them shipped in time for the project post when it comes up (I'm actually posting the Make it Monday Sew it up Sunday February project on January 25th) and you can whip it out straight away for the holiday.

{and just an extra note...I hope you enjoy the ideas and photos on my blog but please note that the content here including photos and text are the property of Trish Preston and may not be used, copied or transmitted without the express consent of Trish Preston.  For any inquiries, please email me at twopeasinapoddesigns@gmail.com.  Thanks!}

xoxo,

Trish

Etsy schmetsy!

Spent the better part of um, all day, loading new stuff in to the etsy shop.  Wanna sneak peek?

Hmmm...and did I happen to mention that if you find something you can't live without over in my etsy shop and you just happen to be a blog subscriber (it's easy to do - just look over in the sidebar =>) that you'll get a little something extra in your package?  What is it you say?  That's a "new year's surprise" but I promise - you'll love it!  ok...I'll give you a little hint...Gotta get back to making dinner - the hubs has already started without me and the baby is crying because she wants more "cawk-late" - chocolate milk.  I gave her Ovaltine yesterday - wow!  I've created a monster!  She comes in, pointing at the cabinets - "cawk-late! cawk-late!".  What have I done!?

Next post - a zip top wristlet tutorial!

xoxo,

Trish

Don't sneeze when you're hiding

1) Spy on people who are acting weird and looking suspishise.  (I love the spelling here!)

2) Don't sneeze when you're hiding.

3) If criminals are being nice to you, stop walking and run away.

4) If you're moving, pick a house with a mystery.

5) If you want to know about someone, go on the internet.

I found of all of those things written on a piece of paper lying in a heap of toys and other junk.  Written in colored pencil by one of the Two Peas.  I'm sure it was copied from a book - I think.  But it totally made me giggle when I found it.

Don't sneeze when you're hiding.

You know, because, then you'll be found out.  This really struck me because one of the things I've been wanting to do with this blog is to get some of YOU out of hiding.  I have found so many new and fun blogs through my readers and I'd love to highlight some of the fun and wonderful things you are creating.  Would you like to be included here on my blog roll?  Start sneezing!

I have a new link section called "Crafty Friends".  I'd love to include your blog there.  Leave me a comment with a link to your blog and a short description about your blog.  Once in awhile, I'm going to highlight some of you right here!  That way, we can all find new blogs to visit and enjoy.  Sound good?

 

Alrighty then...would you like to come and visit with me in person?  I have some craft shows coming up and I'd love for you to visit.  Print off a page from the blog or pull it up on your phone and bring it to any of the shows.  I'll extend to you 10% off any one item!

 

Go here to see where I'll be in November and December.  I'll have some kids shirts and skirts.  Upcycled jeans too.  Key fobs, pocket tissue covers, wallets, accessory bags, scarves, lanyards and of course, purses.

What are you making for Christmas gifts?  Do share your ideas...we could all use a little inspiration.

xoxo,

Trish

You will have to speak up...

What's that you say?  I'm sorry.  Can't hear you over the whir of the sewing machine.  The giggles and screams of three kids.  The washing machine and dryer.  You will have to speak up... I've been a bit busy lately.  You know, the usual.  Filling orders like these and oh, yes, 18 aprons!  (Sorry no photos on those yet - they are off getting finished with Nova, my super accomplished wonderful seamstress helper).  Just the usual ho hum chaotic noise around here.....

WAIT!  No!  Not the usual!  I have some exciting news!

Hazel Hipster PatternSPROUTS!  Sprouts is finally here!

After a full year or so of designing pattern covers and kicking around which projects to pattern first - we have finally completed our first draft pattern from the Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs pattern line aptly called, "Sprouts".  (Sticking with the whole garden theme here...the gardener actually developed this name.  He's pretty good, isn't he?)

Sprouts, Pea sized projects you can complete in 3 hours or less.

Because really, who has more time than that?  And even at that - it'll take days, right?  As I type this now...I'm listening to the baby NOT take a nap and I'm thinking, there goes my tiny 2 hour block of time to do anything.  (she's quite skilled at pushing my sewing machine foot pedal while I'm not looking).

The Hazel Hipster.  Yep.  Here she is, in all her glory.

One of my friends from my twins club served as my "model" for the cover.  (Her Dad is also my accountant - he'll find some creative write off for me on this one I'm sure!)

I love, love, love this pattern because it is the FIRST purse I ever designed.  First purse I ever made.  And it is oh, so very simple.  The pattern is chock full of real life photos so you don't have to guess what I'm talking about - you can see it for yourself.  No line drawings or anything.  And the price.  Ya can't beat it.  Affordable.  And just think of all the bags you could make just in time for Christmas!  (Oh I see you out there rubbing your hands together!)

And you know what else is cool about it?  I made up a mini version so you can have matching Mommy and me bags.  The cute factor is just too much here!

Go quick before they are gone. And if you have any questions along the way as you sew - drop me a line at twopeasinapoddesigns at gmail.com.

There are a few giveaways going on with these patterns - you'll find them scattered about in blog land.  Keep checking back here - I'll keep updating the page at the top of my blog titled "Sprouts" - you'll find a growing list of blogs to visit where you might be able to win one of these Hazel Hipster patterns.

I have more SUPER exciting (ok, well for ME it's super exciting) news to share but I'll save that for next time.  I did mention, things were starting to go wonderfully around here.  I got into my first juried show.  Cool but that's not the big news.  Kind of bigger.  You'll just have to wander on back here later to find out!  (wink! and a head nod)

See ya soon,

xoxo,

Trish

Little Pea...meet the ocean. Ocean, this is little pea.

20 AG doll aprons had to made the day before we left for our excursion I was working so hard so that our family could enjoy a little R&R.

...and loads of inventory for shows.  Come find this purse Sept 26-28 at the Tuttle Mall in Dublin, OH at a center kiosk.

If you are also a mompreneuer like me, you know that there really are very little days off.  I work at the university 3 days a week and then 4 days a week, into the wee wee hours, I'm sewing, designing, sketching, blogging, filling orders and on and on and on...

So, I can't begin to tell you how excited I was to go to the coast for some rest and fun.  AND I didn't even bring my sewing machine with me, can you believe it?!  A true break.  So rare.  I'll share more later from our little trip

I love this photo because if you look way out in the distance you can see the gardener with our two peas out in the water.

but here's some evening photos of our littlest pea meeting the ocean.

Sand...a whole new texture we haven't explored before.

The sun is almost gone...love the reflection in the water

Work hard to play hard...

I'm having one of those months.  One of those months in which I am literally chained to my sewing machine.  I'm not sure I could possibly show you the shear amount of STUFF coming out of the Two Peas studio lately.  It's a lot. Like a bazillion key fobs and wristlets and bags and t-shirts.  Ohhh, t-shirts.  Which is what I really need to be doing right now.  I have 3 shows coming up AND we have some serious fun planned for this weekend.  I have GOT to have everything done and out the door so I can relax a bit.  I can not wait!  Seriously.  Can. Not. Wait.  Somebody.  Unplug.  My.  Iron.  I'm just about done!

I said I shared with you some of the other little outfits I had made for my girls for school and here's a few.

3 tiered skirt in Anna Maria Horner Good Folks.  I love this print!

This peas request was for a "Rock Star" shirt.

The skirt and pants pattern is Simplicity 4206, Sewing Pattern for Dummies.  And let me tell you, it is seriously extremely easy, very few instructions / steps and really quick.  I think they turned out cute.  I added the ruffle to the bottom of the pants and I added bias tape to the hem of the skirt.  But if you want an easy quick pattern, this is it!  Loved it.

Wish I had more time to share all of the other goodies going on here but I just don't!

I will leave you with a fun quick tutorial though!  I started teaching my series of sewing classes, my very own Two Peas Sewing Bee...and one of the projects we made was a lanyard.

So easy...here's what you need:  key ring and lobster claw clip to hold a key and your id badge.  I found these in the jewelery supply section of JoAnn Fabrics.

Great for teachers, nurses - anybody who needs a lanyard!  And so easy!

Cut one strip of fabric 2" x 32".  Now, if you want it longer - add a few inches to the length, maybe 34" or 36".  Press wrong sides together in half.  Then open it back up.  Press wrong sides together each half to the center creating your own piece of bias tape.  Again, press.  Make sense?

Sew down each side of this strip.  Then add your key ring to one end and your clip to the other end.  You want to make sure your strap is straight and then fold your ends over your hardware towards the center about 1 inch.  Bring your ends together, lining up your raw edges of each end so that they are even.  Your raw edges are now folded to the inside.  Sew, following your side seams, down each seam, across just above your raw edges so that you have sewn a square and completely encased your hardware and hidden your raw edges.  That's it!  That's all there is to making a cute little lanyard!  So easy, start to finish, 15 minutes!

OK...I SO have to get back to my machine and work on shirts!  Have fun making lanyards!

xoxo,

Trish

I want to be like Oprah

OK... it's not that I'm a big Oprah fan or anything but what I mean by that is her philanthropy.  I've often thought, selfishly so, how cool would it be to have that kind of money to give away?  She changes so many lives with her charities yet she receives so much in the pleasure of being able to do so.  The old saying, "it's better to give than to receive" - it's so true, isn't it? Made this long ago for my friend Jen who LOVES cherries!

I think it's that way with handmade things too.  I mean, selfishly, I love LOVE LOOVVEE to give handmade gifts and love to make things for my business because I put so much effort into the design and creation of each item.  I LOVE it when someone receives it and they are just thrilled with it.  I get so much out of giving and making for people that it is quite an addiction.  Is that selfish?  Sometimes I think it is.  Do you feel this way too about creating for others?  It feels so good - it's such a joy, isn't it?

But this morning, on my way to work, I was listening to the radio - I typically listen to our local christian station, 104.9 the river, and started thinking about this whole philanthropy thing.  As the mother of 3, my ride in to work is typically the ONLY time I am ever alone.  I enjoy these rides to and from work because it gives me a chance to just think.

For my business, I have always said I wanted to do it in such a way that my business becomes a blessing.  Now, I know, in business - it should be all about business and forget any emotion.  Donald Trump didn't build an empire thinking what "good things" he could do for the world, just how to make himself a buck.   But come on ladies, don't we all want to feel like what we do somehow makes a difference?  Touches a life?  Leaves a legacy?  How can I do that in this industry?  In my day job, it's rather simple.  I work in higher education, I work in the environmental field and I get great satisfaction out of working with students to create these amazing futures that help to build a sustainable environment for us all.  Love it.  But how do I do that in other facets of my business life?

The Two Peas charity projectIn the past several summers, the two peas have used my scraps to cover journals and sold them at our local coffeehouse.  They got to keep $1 from each book they sold and donate the other $4 to a charity.  One year it was our local Children's Hospital, one year to a friend of theirs for her walk for JDRF and the other year it was St. Judes.  I loved these projects.  They learned so much from creating and giving and they learned how good it feels to give.

Lately, it seems like we have had our attention drawn to all kinds of kids and families who are in need.  We have a local boy, same age as the two peas, just diagnosed in August with Osteosarcoma.  I was sent a link for this little one who was shaken by his day care provider at 5 months of age.  A family from our twins club has been caring for their twins who came much too early, they have been in the hospital since their birth last November.  One of them got to come home about a month ago, the other is still in the NICU, spending almost the entire first year of life in the hospital.  Last week, I was asked to participate in a charity event for dEBra which is an organization for children with fragile skin.  I was thinking of these children as I was driving in this morning and saying prayers for them.

Not the best photo of me from my best angle but there's the prayer quilt for our pea

to outside the womb

But for the grace of God, I have three healthy children.  I am very blessed that I do not know the heartache and rollercoasters that go along with a sick child.  Not really.  When my littlest pea was in her 22nd week during my pregnancy, I was told she had markers for Downs Syndrome.  They wanted to do more testing but I refused.  I couldn't change it, nobody could change it.  We would love her no matter what the outcome.  She was added to our church prayer list and our pastor brought over a prayer quilt someone had made for her.  This quilt was at church and each person tied a knot on the quilt and said a prayer for her.  My hubby, the gardener, laid this quilt over me while I was in labor and it brought me immense peace to know that those "prayers" were on our little girl.  As soon as she was out, I asked if she was ok.  Our doctor said, "She is perfect.  Absolutely perfect.  I don't think she has downs".  It wasn't until her 2 month checkup when I tearily asked our doctor if she was really ok that she told me, I could stop worrying.  She was really doing just great and really was perfect.  What a blessing.

And so as I'm thinking about these kids, their families, my business I felt like God was telling me that if I wanted to add philanthropy to what I do that this was it.  As our business grows, I hope to be able to do more and more, but to start, I'm so excited to tell you that 5% of each trunk show will go to our local childrens hospital.

If you host a trunk show and you have a childrens charity, I will gladly work with you to donate your show's proceeds to your charity of choice, like JDRF or others for kids.  I feel like this is the time.  Even when we have such a "tight belt" at home, I feel like even this little bit can be such a big wonderful thing.  Especially now.  I encourage you to think about what "little bit" you can do too at this time.  If we all have just $5 or $10 to spare this month, share it with a charity because right now, they are being hit so hard with losses in income.  And they do so much good for those who are hurting.  But for the grace of God, I have three healthy children.  What little bit I can do, I will do and I hope you will join me in doing so.

Found these tanks at Old Navy and added the ruffles on to make a dress.  Turned out so cute!

Of course, I wanted to also share with you some of the excitement of the past week.  Back to school and wow, we were all excited.

Boo!  New shirts for Halloween!

The two peas really love school and our littlest pea surely enjoys having some time with just Mom or Dad.  The two peas were very excited to have me make them some back to school outfits.  I had a lot of fun making them.  I was like a little fairy...made the outfits after they went to bed and hung them in their room to see when they woke up.  They were so excited which is such a good feeling for me to know that their favorite outfits are something that I made.  See, that selfishness again.  I love making things for my girls!  Just love it!  I have a couple more I'll share with you later.

Hope your back to school week went well.  Did you make anything new?  Do share!

September is a super busy month.  I have two trunk shows - including the one charity event, and branching out to a kiosk at the Tuttle Mall the last weekend of the month.  I'll be quite busy and so I might be MIA a bit from the blog this month.  Keep in touch though!

Thanks for all your comments this last month.  I promised that our August giveaway winner would get a stash of fabric for making a pillowcase (how are you all doing on those by the way?) and KimH...thanks so much, you'll be receiving that stash soon.  The two peas are getting quite accustomed to pulling names out of a hat and think its fun to do each month!

I haven't yet decided what to do for September...how about a back to school themed giveaway?  We gave our new teachers a lanyard and key fob and so I think we'll make that our giveaway this month.  Keep the comments coming in.  I love to hear from you!

Have a great week everyone!

xoxo

Trish

A life well organized

Pretty little hipster is headed north tomorrow...we will be making a bag like this in my "Two Peas Sewing Bee" sewing class(es). My life? Well organized? I hear people comment to me all the time “I don’t know how you do it?! Work part time, run a business, make all this stuff. You must be so organized”. Far from it.

Since I was a kid, I have never, ever been “well organized”. I wish I was but I’m just not. My Mother used to take pictures of my room and the crazy get ups I’d wear (I was big into thrift store shopping as a kid – the wilder the outfit, the better!) and she would claim she was going to save them to show my children someday. Yep, that day has come and my kids think it’s a good laugh. As I get older, I think I’m better able to accept this about myself. That I’m bound to a life, well, maybe not so organized.

I mean, for years, I have emptied out closets and drawers, bought great little containers, and tried to color code and organize by size. And it works. For awhile. And then, before I know it, I have piles of stuff, just stuff, all over the place. And my kids, well, they are just like me. “Two Peas,” I say, “what IS THIS?”, pointing to a pile of bottle caps, little silk rosettes, ribbon and rubberbands. I’m usually told of the latest craft idea they have and how they need to keep all those things because they have an idea for later. Sound familiar? Holy moly! How many times have I said that one! “But I keep this ginormous bag of scraps honey because I have this great craft idea for later and I NEED them!”. Oh surrre!

I guess this “confession” stems from the sermon I heard in church this past Sunday. It was all about confession and how getting things off our chest will make us feel better and that God still loves us for who we are. So just because I can’t find the Brownie field trip permission slip, again, or maybe I’ve lost track of my work keys because I switch purses so often, again or I let the laundry pile up to the sky – hey, God loves me anyway and there’s SOME solace in that. (ok, I do have some heftier confessions than that but those are between me and the big guy). I mean really, wouldn’t all that organization just stifle my creative thinking anyway?! That’s what I keep telling myself at least. I mean, all that clean space, totally overrated, isn’t it?

Ok, another confession. I do still keep trying for organization. I say, I’ve accepted it yet, I do keep trying. In fact, last week while the two peas were off visiting Grandma, I took a break from my sewing machine and my day job and cleaned house. I mean, finally got piles of stuff put away, swept away the clutter and pretty much sanitized the main living portions of our house. To tell you how bad it had been for so long, the two peas came home and oh’d and ah’d about the clean spaces. And they’ve been home for almost a week now, and they have totally kept up with the clean space idea. They’ve been cleaning up after themselves brilliantly. They even asked me to pick up a few things because “they wanted to keep everything clean”. Ok, ok, ok. I get it. When an 8 year old tells you that, I guess I realize that the clean space helps them too. A clean organized space for them helps them to feel safe, relaxed and calm. It does the same for me. So, if you come to my house, it may not be the most organized. I may not have everything “show ready” but it will be creatively organized and a little bit cleaner than it has been. It works for me. Because let’s face it. A life well organized, well, I’ve made peace with how well I can organize.

On other news fronts, have I mentioned here before how our baby pea has a hair obsession? I mean, sees a stranger walking by with long hair and screams out for them. Of course, they stop and say, “oh, such a cute baby” and she knows she’s got them. She reaches out the arms and of course they say, “oh my! Do you want picked up? May I?”. Hook. Line. Sinker. She’s got ‘em. She’s up and instantly the girl has got her fingers twirling through this strangers long locks. It’s bad. It’s her baby crack. But, slowly she’s transitioning into a new obsession. It’s shoes. I mean, we all knew it was coming. She’s a GIRL, hello?! Of course, she no doubt would love shoes someday I just didn’t think it would happen this early. She’s not particular. Anybody’s shoes. My husbands. Mine. The two peas. Shoes found around at the pool. Flip flops. Heels. She’s not picky. She wants to put on her sun hat, put on a giant pair of shoes and suck her thumb. That’s pretty much a good day for her. A life well organized or cutie patootie days like these? I’ll take the cutie patootie days thank you very much.

Olivia bag in Amy Butler Daisy Chain.  Love the cording detail...don't you?

A few new things heading out of the studio. Making some progress on patterns. Had a product photo shoot yesterday and more to come as I’ve narrowed down my projects to a set of three that I think you’ll enjoy. And so much more on the horizon.

A little Erin McMorris love - her Park Slope fabric line.  Makes a cute dress and these look great with a long sleeve tee and a pair of jeans to get longer seasonal wear!

New designs I’m working on to complete my color stories with my original portfolio and hope to resubmit before the end of the year. So that’s what’s new with us in a nutshell. How about you?

Xoxo,

Trish

**Bloggers Note** Oops, I did it again!  Oh yes, left for work this afternoon and forgot my work keys, again.  Shheeez!

last hurrah!

Love this mix of prints - this "Charlie" bag has a front pocket, zip top and two pockets inside.  It will be on my etsy site soon! It’s been on my to-do list, honest it has. I meant to update my blog. I meant to get on here and announce the July giveaway winner. Really. I did. But, well, it’s just that school starts soon. And I know, I often hint at the fact that I can not wait for that day to come because, I’m about to lose my mind BUT…I will miss them, honest.

So, the two peas, wee one and me, we’ve been hangin’ at the pool, spent a day over at our most “awesomeness” zoo and now, the two peas are doing their rounds with my family. I heard today that they went to the waterpark and an Indian mound, tomorrow a different waterpark and a trip to the putt-putt course my niece works at…sounds like a great “last hurrah” before school starts.

While they have been gone, all of 24 hours now, I have sorted their play “nook”. Our house is really tiny so they don’t have a play room, just a corner. I gathered enough garbage out of that wee little corner to fill our entire kitchen size trash can. Tomorrow, my boss was kind enough to let me take a last minute vacation day so I could maximize on their absentness and continue with the purge – moving on to their room. Feels rather nice to finally have at least a few rooms of my house, cleaned out and well, finally actually, clean. See, when it’s summer time, our house isn’t clean. Ever. Seriously, I’m working, the hubby is working, we play as much as we can and the house, well, it kind of falls apart over these few months. So, I’m looking forward to getting some order back around here in time for school to start.

We last left off here chatting about pillowcases for our troops, right? Ah yes! So, I got some great brown flannel with white polka dots and then I thought, it’s kind of hot over there. Flannel? Maybe not so much. I’ll have to see what cottons I have in my stash. Anyway, ladies, here it is. A great little pillowcase tutorial offered up by “Little Birdie Secrets”. Super simple and looks fantastic when you’re done. I mentioned an article I read about a foundation that was collecting such things. You’ll find them here at Operation Bedding. Or maybe you have a family member or friend who is serving you’d like to send your cases off to. Make ‘em up, send ‘em out and then share your photos and a shout out to who your pillowcases went to here. In the comments section, leave your comment and a link back to your blog or site to share your completed projects. I’d love to especially see who they are going to, first names or whatever so we can remember these very special folks in our prayers and ask for their protection and safe return.

Love these full patchwork skirts!

More fun things to share with you! I’m going to be offering some sewing classes! Yahoo! What fun! If you are local to Columbus Ohio – we’d love to have you. The “Two Peas Sewing Bee” is a series of beginners classes. 3 classes offered September 10th, October 8th and November 5th. The first class we will be doing a bunch of easy quick projects – projects to help you get more familiar with your machine and build your confidence. They are also great projects for you to replicate again and again for Christmas gifts (you know, Christmas is coming sooner than you think!) The second class, we will be making a cute little skirt and doing an appliqué on a t-shirt. Our third class, we will be making one of my

Hipster - a great beginners project

easy peasy little hipster bags. You can sign up for one or all three classes but you have to hurry because we only have 6 seats for this class. If you’re local and interested, email me at twopeasinapoddesigns at gmail.com for registration information.

Thanks so much to my uber Mom friend Barb, who is allowing me to offer this class in her uber cool craft studio where she hosts her “Stampin’ Up” classes. Love ya Barb! You’ll love her craft studio – I could get lost in there and craft for weeks!!! So much fun stuff – if ever I need anything on a moments notice, I call her!

And here’s the best part about “The Two Peas Sewing Bee”…Quilthome.com has been kind enough to offer a 10% discount to my registered students to get your supplies. LOVE Quilthome.com. Those ladies have THE best service ever! I swear – I place an order and from Washington state to Ohio, I get my fabrics within 2-3 days. Very fast service! They are just wonderful to deal with and when you log on to their page, always check the right hand column because they always have something on sale and a coupon code posted there. Love them! (Thanks Heidi!) I have other favorites too but I’m a big fan of theirs, for sure.

I finally, finally, am nearing the point of getting ready to release a few patterns of my own. I have a product photo shoot later this week and hopefully before the end of Fall, I will have something ready to go. Local at first, and for use in my class, but I’ll probably offer them up on etsy and my dot com later on.

And last but not least. My monthly giveaway. Crystal, my dear twins mommy blogger friend – your bags WILL come, I promise. And for July, a little mini notebook cover – goes to…drum roll please and a random drawing courtesy of whatever the wee one pulls out of the hat, “vallovesherboys”. Sweet! I’ll be sending this little book ‘o’ love your way soon. For August, a stash of fabric for you, cut and ready to cut to make your own pillowcase. Free fabric – what could be better!

So, signing off to go do some more cleaning while I can! How good it feels to purge!! And did I mention? The “homegrown” of our name – well, really enjoying it at the moment. The gardener has done well this year. I picked 30 yellow and red tomatoes today and a huge bowl of cherry and grape tomatoes. To die for, seriously! Any ideas how to preserve them? I heard I should freeze them whole to use in sauces later. Any other ideas? I could hardly hold the baby back while I picked, she was eating them so fast – all that acid, not so good on her bum. I had to block her from getting into the vines and she was getting so mad :>) Just like her sisters! The two peas eat tomatoes whole, like an apple, love ‘em! Hope you’re enjoying your harvest too!

Xoxo, Trish

143 days until Christmas!

AHHH!  Ok, so 143 days SOUNDS like it's far off but it's really not!  Especially when your days are scheduled tight already from here until then!  I have a few more trunk shows to get through and a weekend at the mall at a kiosk I'm sharing with my Bows and Blossoms friend in September and THEN a vacation, oh yes, finally!!  AND THEN, I'm done with custom orders as of October 31st.  I want to be sure to have your orders back to you by Thanksgiving and then I want to I can NOT wait to go to the beach.  Haven't been on a vacation in almost 2 years!

relax with my family over the holidays and start working on my book.  (OHH, too many things going on around here - still tweaking my fabric designs - still chatting with textile company reps and hoping to pitch a book idea I've been kicking around for awhile).  Oh, did I mention?  I'm hoping to teach a class too at a new sewing studio opening in town.  More on that later...

So the jist is...that is you want a custom order, now is the time to start thinking about that and place your order soon!  I've been working on some great little skirts lately so if you're thinking "back to school"  - you gotta check out these patchwork skirts and add a cute little peace sign tee shirt to go with it.  Love it!

Later this week I'll post that pillowcase tutorial, but just sayin...check out new stuff over in my etsy shop and bookmark my new dot com because pretty soon, it will be fully loaded and ready to go.  I'll be putting less stuff in my etsy store towards October and more, ready to go items over there in the dot com store.

Catch ya later!

xoxo,

Trish

{i love the gardener}

The view from the back end of our garden looking down our sledding hill into the pasture I love the gardener.   I can say that because I do, truly, madly, deeply. The gardener, my husband, has been working hard lately at making sure we have a wonderful harvest this summer and fall. He has planted a variety of delicious vegetables for us and we can’t wait to enjoy them.

Food is one of those things that is really important to us. That sounds strange because, duh, like isn’t food important to everyone? What I mean is food quality. How food sustains us. Nourishes us. Takes care of us.

Maybe we’ve talked about this before but it’s been on my mind again lately. Food. On both sides of our family, we have a high rate of cancer. Not a good family history to have. I have always been pretty conscientious about what I feed us meaning trying to eat whole foods.

Our sugar snaps are already getting big!  Can't wait!

Fresh foods that I can identify. You know what I mean? Honestly, my husband and I are a lot more “junk food junkies” than I probably care to admit but we’ve been so careful with our children and what we feed them. I have tried to feed my kids quick crummy foods once in awhile out of convenience and dog-gone it if they’ll have nothing to do with it! They love sugar of course – ice cream, etc but they would so rather eat ice cream with strawberries on top rather than chocolate any day.

There is comfort in knowing that they know where their food comes from. They know the cows across the street are beef cows and they know the difference between black angus and jerseys. They know that local foods are better for the environment because they travel less distance, use less energy in getting from farm to our table. They know that fresh whole foods will make them strong and keep them healthy.

I was reading some reviews for a book from Mariel Hemingway called Mariels Kitchen. It looks like a great cookbook. She talks about how her husband was diagnosed with stage IV cancer and that with a strict diet he went into remission. Now, I don’t know that we can say that diet alone can “cure” cancer but it makes sense that the garbage we ingest can trigger things to go awry in our bodies. I think we’ve all read about girls going into puberty at early ages and finger pointing at hormones in our meat and dairy products or plastics. Doesn’t it make sense that the fewer chemicals, antibiotics and hormones we ingest – the purer the foods we eat, just keeps us healthier, right?

And so it’s something that is important to our family.  Seems like in our family, you are born with that passion for good food. We had some corn on the cob the other night and cut some off the cob to serve the baby.

MMM! Corn on the cob!

She would have nothing to do with it! She just kept pointing at the girls who were eating their corn. So, I handed her an entire cob and with the widest mouth she just took a huge crunchy bite of corn! It was so funny! How did she know how to eat it? She loved it!

Tonight, neighbors next to the park where my husband is a park ranger called us at home because they had something for him to pick up. My husband came walking in the door with a HUGE heaping mound of organic strawberries. Unbelievable! Everybody dug in instantly, including the baby who couldn’t stop screaming for more!

If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you know that I am relishing my twins being on swim team right now. An hour and 15 minutes of free time for me 3 times a week. I LOVE IT! I just sit pool side and read, chat with new friends, and read blogs on my iphone. I NEVER, EVER, ever never, never ever, get free time like that. 7 days a week, 18 hours a day usually, I’m doing something for someone, cleaning, cooking, changing diapers, nursing a baby, taking care of kids with homework and bath time and cleaning up toy rooms, and running a business, and being a landlord, and oh my gosh, the list goes on and on and on. And it’s no different than any of you, right? We all do it. Over schedule, over commit, multi-task til the cows come home. So swim team is the greatest blessing ever! And my girls are loving it.

I am rambling aren’t I? The whole reason I brought up swim team was actually because I’m reading a book called “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Barbara Kingsolver. She relates her families move from Arizona to Virginia and their foray into feeding their family with local foods as much as they can. It’s a great read and I very highly recommend it!

Sewing? Oh yes, plenty of that going on always. I have some new designs I’ll share with you next post. A new backpack that I STILL have not perfected (how in the heck do you attach the zipper placket to the gusset and not have any seams show?), a hobo bag, and a few other gems. I have trunk shows booked already for June, July and August. And I’m getting some great feedback and encouraging words from some of these textile mills. I’m very hopeful that I’ll have my own fabric line soon. Oh, so very, very hopeful. It can’t come a day too soon for our little family!

Always very thankful and in awe of God’s grace in our lives. Surrounded by miracles all around us. Ain’t it grand?

Xoxo, Trish

Off we go....

This little new design will be holding my portfolio for me at Quilt Market.  I'm still working out the kinks on it so expect to see this bag for sale sometime next month with a bit more angle to the sides.  Love it though!  What do you think?  I think I'll call her "Charlie". OK, so I have barely touched my sewing machine in the last couple of weeks.  I have had meeting after meeting with my design team about my portfolio.  Picking out colors and getting things just so...so...so, I have to confess.  I don't know what I'm doing.  This whole, "trying to be a textile designer" thing has my stomach in such knots.  I don't have a clue what I'm doing.  It's all one big guess.  I drew up some sketches, my wonderful girls - Sonya and Melinda (you girls ROCK!) managed this whole project, digitized my designs, and made me look way cool on paper.  Never in a million years could I have accomplished any of this without them.  And for as much as I have prayed about this process, about the path I am on - I have to believe I'm moving in the right direction.  Melinda goes to my church and we started chatting about this months ago and it has snowballed from there.  I just see God working in so many aspects of this journey and it's pretty darn amazing.  Whatever happens, happens.  I have faith that I'll be just where God wants me to be, what is best for our family.  But...I could sure use some prayers.  When I say my stomach has been in knots I mean like morning sickness anxiety crazy blah magnified like 20 times.  My heart is pounding the minute I wake up because I'm thinking about what I have to do that day for deadlines and orders and getting things out so I can make it to Quilt Market.  Very stressful.  Although, Thursday night before market, Carla (my husbands way wonderful Aunt who has been one of "the" buyers for a HUGE retailer for the last 25 years - she's been so supportive and calming for me) will be arriving early at our hotel and plan on a nice long relaxing meal out.  Rarely do I go anywhere without kids so I'm kind of looking forward to just a little night out.

This all started with Joan.  My friend Joan said, "you ought to do home parties" for my purse sales.  So she hosted a party for me at her house.  It went well and so it grew from there.  Then she introduced me to Jodi.  Jodi is another graphic designer guru who created my logo.  If you like my branding look, that is all thanks to Jodi.  She has this way of crawling in my head and getting just the right thing.  She designed my sewing pattern covers that will be out late this year.  She's awesome.  Then there is Suann - from Bows and Blossoms, who said I should look into this site and that site for website designs and hosting.  Saved me a ton of money (hopefully, I'll be launching the new site in the next week or two).  And there is Jill, one of my "best" customers who is turned into a great friend who shares retail therapy with me.  Barb who keeps me sane and lets my use her computer because "we only have dial up" at our house.  Crazy!  And Kris who helped push my business further too - and just has been a wonderful friend.  There have been so many wonderful people, friends, collegues and my sweet family - along the way that have helped push me along the path.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  I love you guys - I am so grateful and incredibly blessed.  No matter what happens, I got friends and in the end, that's all that matters.  :>)  Ahhh...ok enough mush mush.

Adult tee

adult tee

caterpillar onesie

little birdie onesie

Just a few more shirt designs...the little onesies are $12.  Not up on etsy yet but eventually.  Email me if you're interested at twopeasinapoddesigns@gmail.com.  I HEART the little caterpillar one.  My girls are big on worms and the like so this is their favorite.

I'll hopefully have some positive things to report when I get back from Quilt Market.  I leave on Thursday.  I won't post again until after I get back.  Wish me luck!  I could sure use it.  I'll try to keep everyone posted on Twitter!

xoxoxo, Trish

{My sweet little one turns one...}

MMM! Cake!  She didn't actually like the cake - just the frosting and the ice cream. My sweet little Sprout turned one over the weekend.  We had a little lunch party with family and then went to see the twins in a musical, Noyee's Fludde, at church.  Big crazy day but fun!

The best is that the day was so sunny and perfect we went outside.  I "tried" to put Sprout in the grass and she completely freaked out.  Wouldn't let her feet touch, started to shake, cry, wave her hands about wildly.  Is this a common baby thing?  I mean, we LIVE outdoors so this can't be good...

Her favorite gift - a toothbrush.  She LOVED the toothbrush that her Grandma gave her - it was too funny!  Would NOT let it go, for ANYTHING!

In case you can't tell, they were wolves - you know, two by two, they went into the Ark.  This was my feeble attempt at a costume!

I also tried to come up with a couple of new designs...which requires several tries typically.  Hence why this little purse went to a friend of the neighbor to give her little girl.  I know, I know...it's lopsided.  Hello?!  That's why its a design sample!  I freehand cut this stuff and who knows what will happen with it.  Any thoughts?  Like, love, hate?  Not sure where to go with this one...

New crazy design...hmmm, back to the drawing board

The little wristlet one I like very much - but it is also all crazy lopsided.  I'll figure it out sooner or later.

Be sure to check out the etsy site because I have loaded both adult and kids embellished vintage like shirts over there - they are $15 and $16 and right now, FREE SHIPPING!  Can't beat it for cute-ness like this and I'll have more designs coming soon.

Love this fabric from Robyn Pandolf

At the moment, I've been busy with color palettes, and naming collections, and looking over proofs for my fabric designs.  Quilt Market is in a couple of weeks and I'm gonna try like heck to get in there and get on board with one of the textile mills to produce my designs.  Wish me luck - prayers preferred since really luck has nothing to do with it.  The gardners' Aunt Carla is coming with me to help with Sprout while I'm chatting up with design directors.

It's been fun to choose my colorways and see my artwork get digitized.  I just hope somebody else likes it besides me!

Anybody using the placemat tutorial I posted?  Share your photos if you do!  Later this week I'll post our April giveaway winner so stay tuned and don't forget to keep in touch!  We'll have something else fun to giveaway for May - one of my t-shirts!

Happy Monday,

Trish xo

{Homemade is best...and a little easy Mother's Day tutorial}

I painted this a VERY long time ago and it now hangs in my sisters sunroom

OK, so last week when I was visiting family for Easter, I started to notice that everywhere I looked - um, there was stuff I made hanging around. Little paintings, a fabric covered journal, quilts, stockings made from my great grandmothers old raggedy quilt, napkin rings, placemats and of course, purses. I'm really all about this handmade thing - it truly is a wonderful gift when you can give someone something you made by hand (or something someone else made - something unique - you get the idea!)

SO...here's a cool idea for you crafty types for a Mother's Day gift for YOUR Mother - a set of placemats and napkin rings! Seriously, easy project. Here we go:

Materials needed - the obvious, sewing machine, thread, etc you'll need fabric (see below), fusible interfacing and prequilted fabric.

Pick 4 different fabrics (I picked some Amy Butler dots to coordinate with some vintage kitchen prints I found). For each placemat, CUT four 5" x 14.5" panels.

Using 1/4" seams, piece your panels together. Press your seams open. Next, cut a piece of fusible fleece interfacing to fit on the rear of your front panel. Cut it 1/4" smaller all the way around than your front panel. Following the instructions with your interfacing, fuse it to the wrong side of your front panel. This will give your placemat some extra oomph and keep your cotton panel looking crisp - in my opinion.

Once you have your front panel complete, use it as your pattern to cut a solid rear piece from your prequilted cotton fabric. I used a cream color - the same I often use in my purses - sound familiar?

With right sides together, pin and sew with 1/2" seams. Leave an opening for turning. Turn right side out. Top stitch. I also typically add some "steam a seam" to my opening just to make sure it stays shut. That's it kids! Done! Now repeat for the rest of your set of placemats you want to make.

100_2075

Napkin rings are loads of fun when you use old buttons. My parents had given me an old tin that belonged to my grandmother full of buttons. I glued some of the pretty and larger ones to magnets and gave those to my family. For the rest, I cut a piece of wide elastic just big enough to fit around my napkins. Then I stitched buttons galore until the elastic was fully covered. I warn you - it takes a lot of buttons to cover one and it actually took me several, several hours to stitch all of these on for 6 rings.

What a great gift set. My Mom still loves hers and I loved seeing them adorn her table last week at Easter. Even my kids were impressed. "Did you make these Momma?" Ah, yeah. Hope that gave you a good handmade gift idea.

The little tie-tote in Patty Youngs Andalucia pattern

A few more dresses and embellished jeans went out this week and a cute little tie tote that my girls gave to their girlfriend for her 8th birthday. These will be finding their way to my etsy site pretty soon.

Embellished recycled jeans

Dress, embellished jeans and matching ponytail holder

Lots of orders being mailed out this week - thanks to my neighbor Barb for helping me cut everything! We need to do that more often because we never did get to our banana split desserts!

Don't forget - just a week or so left on this month and our April giveaway will be done. The two peas will be picking a comment out of a hat and we'll be sending you, the lucky winner, a way cool, patchwork accessory bag with an awesome buckle...I'll share that photo with you later next week.

Keep Spring coming - I'm begging for the sun and warm breezes to start coming every day instead of snow, rain, sun, snow, rain, rain, rain, sun...we just need some SUNNNNN to stay in O-H-I-O for awhile!

xo - Trish

Introducing Baxter Bunny and the newly redesigned Hipster!

Here he is!  Baxter Bunny.  (And don't miss the new redesign of my hipster found at the end of this post!)

I hear it all the time. You’d love to be able to make something but you can’t sew. Or you don’t have time. Or you are completely creatively and craftily illiterate. This project is FOR YOU!

This could not be easier but everyone will think you spent hours stitching away on this little guy. You CAN do it! I know you can! And it takes very little effort so everyone can do this!

Please note, Baxter Bunny is not designed for small children and he does pose a choking hazard.

Baxter Bunny © Trish Preston,Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs

First, here’s what you will need:

  • · Scraps of fabric (you could also use flannel, maybe some old flannel sheets or pillowcase you aren’t using anymore or you could use felt / felt squares that you might have from other kids craft projects) On my project shown here, I used a cotton fabric that I lightly interfaced with fusible fleece to give it a bit more body – the fusible fleece is easy to find at your fabric store – even Walmart has it in their fabric section.
  • · Steam a Seam (optional) You only need about 2 square inches of the stuff.
  • · Scissors
  • · Needle and thread
  • · Batting for stuffing
  • · Buttons for eyes

steam a seam

I hope this pattern prints ok for you...it should fit on an 8 .5 x 11 sheet of paper.  Baxter stands roughly 7 inches tall.baxter-bunny

1.  To start, you’ll want to gather all of your materials. Using the pattern, cut 2 of each for the body, ear lining and pocket.

1. 2.  If you are using the cotton, I fused interfacing on my pieces to give it some oomph! Interfacing is easy to use. You only need a small amount and you can skip this if you want. But just cut your interfacing a little smaller than your bunny body pieces and with the glue side facing the wrong side of the fabric, fuse with your iron.

Cutting

1. 3.  Using the Steam a Seam, again, easy to find in your fabric / craft stores – it’s used for appliqué. Follow the directions and cut out your ear lining and fuse to the ears. If you want to skip the steam a seam, you can just use a running stitch to attach your ear lining.

1. 4.  Next, create your bunny face. Find two old buttons and attach for the eyes. I used two that didn’t perfectly match in size to give him some character. Cut a little nose out of your fabric and stitch in place. Then stitch on some whiskers and a little mouth.

1. 5.  For the pocket, lay your pocket right sides together with the wrong side of the fabric facing out so you can see it. Stitch across the top of your pocket. Turn right side out and press your seam so it lays nice and flat. This will give you a nice clean edge on top since you’ll want to fill the pocket with a treat!

100_2725

pocket

steam press pocket

1. 6.  Pin your pocket to your bunny’s belly. You will have raw edges on the sides of your pocket. Next, use a blanket stitch to stitch the pocket on.

7.  Blanket stitch. I love this stitch. It’s fun to do and it’s quite easy once you get started. Working from left to right, bring your needle from the right side of the fabric (the top) and point your needle out to the edge. Keep the thread from the previous stitch under your needle and pull through. It’s hard to explain but I hope the photo and the text together show you how. Practice on a separate piece of fabric before doing it on your project if this is the first time you’ve done a blanket stitch.

blanket stitch

blanket stitch

1. 8.   Now pin your bunny together, wrong sides together, your right sides facing out. You will have raw edges. Blanket stitch around your bunny leaving an opening for stuffing.

2. 9.  Stuff your bunny and make him good and round!

1. 10.  Finish stitching up the opening and you are done!

All together, I think this project took me about an hour to make. Hope you enjoy making it and send me your photos of your Baxter Bunny and I’ll show them off here.

Congrats to our giveaway winner!  She will receive the newly redesigned hipster just ripe for Spring!  The new pocket panel on the front is angled and has the perfect little pocket down low for your iphone or other device and then the larger side of the pocket could hold a water bottle or other gear.  It also has 2 interior pockets and a magnetic snap closure.

The new hipster is available now for custom orders.

platterpurse-in-giraffe

And finally -  giraffe print "platterpurse" on it's way to Marysville.  Love this print!

Happy Easter all!

Ciao, xo Trish

Giveaway and another year...going, going....

Almost gone! First, a giveaway and the time is almost gone! I have a sweet little spring hipster (see the fabric selection in the previous post) waiting to find a new home. Post a comment or send me an email and we'll put your name in a hat for this little bag. The winner will get their bag shipped out to them next week. SO COMMENT NOW!! OK...and so, another year has come and gone. I celebrated a birthday last week and I'm crazy crepe papernot exactly thrilled at the aspect of moving ever so closer to...gulp, 40. I mean, really, 40?! I still have a few years left but it's out there, looming ahead and just waiting to snatch me up into its clutches. So when I woke up to yet another birthday this week, I have to say I was not feeling all that chipper about the day.

I went off to work and sat in my office in silence most of the day. Our students are off on Spring Break and so most of them are out sunning on a beach somewhere or hiking in the mountains. Nothing exciting about the day. Just an ordinary day. But wait...

I knew something was up when I called my sister on my commute home. She said, as we were about to sign off, "have fun tonight with everything". What everything? What are you talking about? She says, "oh, I don't know." I asked her, what do you know - did you call my house? She said, I might have called your house. Just have fun, ok. Smiling to myself, I pull down our street and promptly lose cell connection (you've heard me groan before about all of this right? We have no internet, no cable and very intermittent cell connection from our house. Drives me nuts!).

I pull up to our driveway and I wonder...why has someone marked the trees? They had tape around them - or so I thought. When I actually pulled in I realize that my entire driveway has crepe paper strewn from tree to tree that goes back and forth blocking the entire length of the driveway. My twins are standing in the doorway yelling "drive through it! drive through it!" and jumping up and down laughing and screaming as I drive slowly through all of the paper and get to a garage that is equally covered! Too fun!

I enter into our house - same thing! A combination of crepe paper, christmas garland, easter decorations and birthday balloons everywhere. They had a delicious lasagna dinner waiting for me compliments of my MIL, and a cake that had dots (?), yes those are my favorite polka dots on there, and my "birdies" that I applique on various things. The girls did the design work and I think it was quite clever. They presented me with a new hummingbird feeder, garden gloves, a bracelet and earrings, and my hubby gave me a dozen roses. I have to say, my blah, blah, blah birthday turned out to be the best ever. I "heart" my family - especially my husband. All that effort meant a TON to me...thanks.

Also this week - just pure random-ness here - Sprouts hair has been wild. Wild!Crazy! She's been sporting this crazy hair all week and I keep wetting it down and it pops back up! Too funny. But with her hair getting longer I can finally really use the barrettes I bought from Suann at Bows and Blossoms. They stay put - well - when she isn't pulling it out - and I love this one with her initial on it. Suann makes uber cute things, super great price and SUPER fast shipping. Check out her site here because she has some of the cutest new things for Spring.Go Bucks bow

Coming up next - bunny tutorial!

A little something you can handstitch for the easter baskets or decorate your table with or just love on! Fun!

Ciao! xo, Trish