:: Button Loop Tutorial ::

It has been BEYOND insanely busy here at the Two Peas studios in the last year. Many new projects and lots of exciting plans…one of those plans was hiring an intern.

My desire in wanting to give back and work with students in a learning environment led us to attend the Career Fair at our local art college where we met La-Neka. She has been learning all about the business and doesn’t even bat an eye now when I tell her we need to go run an “errand” (which is code for ice cream run in town). She has put together a great little tutorial for you below. Please take a moment to say hello and wish her best wishes as she continues in her fashion design career.

Here she is in her first blog post…a button loop tutorial. Great for using on bags, garments and more.

 Hi, You are probably wondering who I am. I am the new intern at Two Peas in A Pod Homegrown Designs. I am a student at a local college in Ohio and I am studying fashion design. I have made a few Tutorials and I hope you like them.

-La-Neka

Loop button holes

Materials

  • Scrap fabric 12″x12″
  • Thread

Directions

1) Cut 1 piece of fabric 5 ½”x 4 ½”

2) Cut 2 strips of fabric that at 2”x 1 ½”

3) Take the larger piece and fold the long side under ½” and press. Set aside.
4) Fold one of the short pieces in half long ways with right sides together and stitch a ½” seam. Back stitch at both ends.
5) Cut the seam with in half leaving it to measure ¼”.
6) Turn the tube to the right side and press flat.
7) Lay the piece vertically flat and take the top end of the piece and line it up beside the other end. It is like wrapping a scarf on some one.  It should have a kind of looped point at the top. Iron it down flat to create a point at the top. Set aside.
Repeat steps 4 through 7 to make the second loop with the second short piece of fabric.
Take the larger piece and unfold the seam.
On the backside of the looped pieces there is a small triangle at the top. Place the piece back side up. Line up the edges of the loops with the edge of the larger piece where the fold is. Pin it into place.
Sew along the folded edge, ½” seam in, and backstitch over the loop seam.

Button looped pocket – putting your button loops to good use

Materials

  • Sample made from button loop tutorial (see button loop sample)
  • Fabric 1
  • Fabric 2
  • 2 buttons the same size (1”)
  • Thread

Directions

Cut one piece of fabric 1 measuring 4 ½” x 5 ½

Cut two long strips. One for the lining and one for the exterior.

Stitch the pieces together with right sides together leaving one of the short ends open. Backstitch with a ½” seam on each side of the fabric.

Turn the pocket to the right side and press the seams evenly.
Press under the top that was left open with a seam allowance of ½”.
Fold the piece in half so that the short end that is open is lined up with the other short end. Wrong sides together.
Topstitch the side edges with a ¼” seam. Press flat and set aside.
Take the button loop sample and the short cut piece that is the same size as the samples beginning size and place it on top right sides together and stitch it on ½” seam on each side accept the opposite end of the button loops. Turn it to the right side and press the seams evenly. Take the open end of the button loop flap top and slide it into the pocket piece’s opening ½” down and tip stitch it into the seam. Press the seam flat. Flap the top of the button loops over evenly lined up with the pocket.
Make a mark where the loops are through the loop, make a dot. This is where your buttons will be. Flip it back and sew your buttons where you made your mark.
Now you’re all done with this great button looped pocket. Add a plastic bag and make it for snacks or store your safety pins in it.

 Great job La-Neka!

 

:: Mother’s Day project for Pediatric Cancer ::

A little boy in our area, Sam Bish, who was the same age as my “two peas”, passed away several years ago from pediatric cancer.  Cancer sucks enough as it is at any age but to strike a child – makes me weak in the knees and my heart ache.

I had the pleasure of meeting Cindy Bish, Sam’s Mom, through a mutual friend at church while Sam was fighting his fight.  It profoundly touched us all.  Cancer is something that has surrounded our family and still rocks us to this day.  When we get a chance to lift up someone else who is in the fight, it is a gift to us to be God’s hands at that time.

I’m asking today if you will help Cindy be God’s hands.  Since Sam’s passing, her family created The Sam Bish Foundation and they bless families going though pediatric cancer treatments at the hospital Sam was treated – Nationwide Children’s Hospital here in Columbus, OH.  They bring meals to families, gift bags to the kids, pajamas, pillow cases – you name it, almost weekly, Cindy and her crew are there supporting other families.  She is truly, a saint, and a bright light in an otherwise dark day.  She posted about her next project she’s organizing for Mother’s Day…she writes,

Our next meal we will be providing at Children’s is next month and at that time I hope to give mother’s day bags to the mom’s on H12 fighting cancer right alongside their child. Many of you said you would like to help with this project. Please message me through this page if you are able to make up some bags or donate items for the bags. Many of the items can be found in dollar bins at Target, Michael’s, ect… Here are items we have put in the bags in the past- journals, note cards, chapstick/lip gloss, pens, tissues, hand sanitizer/hand lotion, body lotion, book marks, $5.00 gift cards (Starbucks/Tim Hortons/Hospital gift cards). If any of you are willing to help us pick up some of these items we would appreciate knowing that as well so we have enough products for the bags. We are planning to make up 30 bags. Thanks so much for your support. These bags have always been a blessing to the mother’s that receive them.

Here’s where YOU come in!  Can you help by making some Patchwork Wristlets for these Moms?  They require very little fabric – in fact, you probably have enough in your scrap basket to pull one of these together.  They require less than an hour of work.  These pretty little wristlets are a great bag for Mom’s to put a put a few dollars in and run down to the cafeteria.  Hold some hand sanitizer and chapstick.  I think they would find a million uses for them while they are at the hospital.

Will you join me in making these for Sam’s foundation?  Cindy would like these items by April 20th so they can organize for their April 30th delivery date.  She needs 30 of these.  Anything over that amount, she will use in future gift bags the following months since they are weekly, meeting and helping families.

Will you make a wristlet?  If so, please comment here that you are committing to making a wristlet.  Tell me how many you will be making and sending.  To save time, you can mail them directly to Cindy at : The Sam Bish Foundation – Mother’s Day Project, P.O. Box 323, Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068.  If you are local to Columbus and want to pass your bag off to me, let me know and I’ll get it to Cindy.  Let’s see how many of these we can make and then Cindy will have a great stash of these sweet little bags to share with Moms…and even with the kids.  I know she has a hard time finding the right things to share with the teenagers receiving treatment and I think these would be fabulous.  Anything above the 30 quantity she needs for Mother’s Day – she will put to great use with patients and their families.

Pass the word to your sewing friends and thanks so much for helping to be the hands of God.

xoxo

:: dog gone it! it’s my birthday ::

Actually, it’s really the anniversary of my 29th birthday.  Let’s not talk about how many of these anniversaries I may have had.  But it is this weekend and I’m looking forward to cake and ice cream and a super yummy dinner with my family.  Probably a movie at home in the afternoon after church under cozy blankets and maybe some popcorn.  No work.  Sounds like a good day to me.  I’m pretty low maintenance.  And kind of a homebody to boot.  Good food, pajamas, and a fire in the fireplace is my kind of a perfect birthday afternoon.

So let’s celebrate with a giveaway.  My gift to YOU!   Here’s my gift…

A couple of Two Peas patterns, a key fob, a camera strap slipcover, a chalkboard tray (handmade by the Gardener himself), a pretty little bling bling ring, and a pincushion ring.

How to enter: Leave a ONE comment telling me what are your favorite patterns, handbags, home dec, quilts…PLUS tell me the name and location of your favorite local quilt store.  Where do you love to go hang out, talk sewing, take classes, shop for fabric and patterns in your neighborhood.

That’s it.  I’ll draw a name using random.org on Tuesday, March 26th around 10am EST.

Yea!

: : me and Jo-Ann : :

Yeah.  SO…a long, long time ago…I was asked to design a few projects using the Simplicity Deluxe Bias Tape machine.  And I came up with a a few things including this simple patchwork bag.  Haven’t seen this bag in a long time.  Until tonight.

Searching for something else on the internet and I stumbled upon my old bag.  As a free project on the Jo-Ann fabrics website.  YEA!  I wondered when it would surface and be shared and now I’m uber excited because it’s a freebie for you all to enjoy.

SO…enjoy!  Would be super cute in bright Spring fabrics for you to carry once the snow melts!

{thanks Jo-Ann’s and Simplicity!}

: : swooning over new pattern covers : :

 

Hazel Hipster Sewing Pattern Cover

Shipping later this month…a refreshed version of my best selling pattern, the Hazel Hipster.  Hazel now boasts an additional style option…

…straight pocket, ruffled angled pocket, zip pocket on the front

…make it full size or mini

…or add a full size magazine / book pocket

Loads of options, lots of style, and a heap of full color, real life photo illustrations and nice heavy duty paper pattern templates.  Hope you love it!

: : winter and so on : :

There really is no such thing as balance.  Work, family.  No balance.

See, the thing is as a woman, it still actually sucks for us in the work world.  You can’t actually have it all.  When you are at work, you think about what you should be doing at home.  When you are at home, you think about opportunities passing you by because you aren’t at work.  I have written about it before.  And it’s nothing new.  Not for me.  Not for any woman regardless of where you work.  In or outside of the home.  It’s not fair.  But it’s the way it is.

I pray about it a lot.  I’m still on that “Mommy track” and others around me who once were are no longer.  They have moved on.  Their kids have grown and their priorities are all work work work.  And I am, gratefully, with much blessing, still in that place.  The “Mommy track”.  That place where my kids are little (and some big), still like to snuggle, still call me Mommy, and my heart is 1000% with them all the time.  I want to be here when they leave for school, be here when they get home, make dinner early, make life for them peaceful and not rushed and chaotic.  Life is short and I will never ever ever never wish I had achieved more in my work life.  My aspirations are to be the best person God created me to be.  Pure and simple.  To nurture my children and husband all the days of my life with as much of me as I can give.

But it’s a challenge.  I run my Two Peas business.  I work part time at another job.  I volunteer and am active in my community and I’m terrible at saying no. But I’m learning.

I’m learning you can’t really have it all.  You can’t stay home AND actually have enough money to put food on the table.  You can’t work all the time and actually mentally or physically be there for your kids, fully in the moment, and without guilt as much as you’d like.  At least I can’t.

And I wrestle with that balance.  Those struggles ebb and flow in my life.  Lately, it’s been increasingly uncomfortable.  Life is challenging me.  I think those uncomfortable feelings that creep up are pushing me towards new ideas and changes.  I’m not sure where yet.  I’m not sure what yet.  But I feel something in me stirring and changing.  It’s uncomfortable.  And I know that means that change is coming.

But I’m patiently praying and quietly listening.  I do know that my heart is pulling me stronger than ever to be present in this place.  To follow what is most important in life.  Maybe it’s just the natural transition of getting older, growing wiser, being more secure in who I am.

And it’s sometimes hard to come to this place – to write, talk and say something worth saying when I haven’t felt like it.  When I haven’t known what to say or share.  Or how to find the time.  But it hit me last night, like a lightening bolt, some ideas for change.  And here I am, finding some time to start a conversation.

Winter has been good.  Fun.  Warm, even though the temperatures outside are cold.  I wanted to share a little of what our two peas, sprout, the gardener and I have been up to…

Santa visited our girls and we enjoyed having Grandma with us too.  There were shouts of joy for chocolates and sock monkeys, barbies, and the best ever…Sprout got a Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer in her stocking.  She paused, held it out in front of her and burst into tears.  Big fat huge raindrops falling from her eyes while she exclaimed, “I love him so much!”.  Sweetest thing ever.  Made us all cry because she was just so genuinely thrilled.

The snow missed us Christmas day but so beautifully fell the day after.  Of course the call went out, “The Preston sled hill is officially open” and friends gathered and came to hit the slopes and then sip hot cocoa afterwards.  The photo on the left : : the two peas and one of their buddies trying a triple person run not so successfully : : photo on the right is Sprout and I, she eventually took her hands down and watched, and squealed and screamed all the way down.  We may live in a teeny tiny house but I remind my girls all the time – you have the best backyard in town and that makes all the small spaces so worth it!  (and no, the little yellow house is not our house – it’s the playhouse my Dad built for the kids.  The brown building in the background – also not our house – but our barn).

We visited family and the girls Aunt and Uncle treated them to a day at the ice rink for Christmas.  They LOVED it!  All three of them!  (If you are ever near Dayton, OH in the winter – the Riverscape downtown park / ice rink is a must do!).  And Sprout, well of course she sports an “S” on her skirt.  She loves getting dressed for church on Sunday and visiting with her girlfriends.  They quite literally, run to each other and knock one another down in a fit of giggles and then run off to play in the nursery or go to class.  4 is the best age ever.  Seriously.  

We have been exploring new recipes.  This one was a huge hit!  It all started because Wendy’s (fast food – don’t judge) has these new Baja salads.  To quote my 4 year old, O.M.G.  So delish!  So I tried to copy it at home and totally pulled it off.

I made a pot of homemade chili.  Put a scoop of the chili over iceberg lettuce. Add shredded cheddar cheese, a few tomatoes diced, fresh avocados sliced, a dollop of sour cream, a squirt of Hidden Valley Ranch Southwest Chipotle dressing, and a few crushed Doritos.  Score!  Kids LOVED it!

And then of course, you have the days that Sprout wants me to do her hair just like Mama…and I always oblige.  Sock buns!!  With my long hair and sewing, sock buns have been my fav way to pull my hair back lately.

And finishing off revisions to my best selling pattern, the Hazel Hipster.  Freshening up pattern covers for relaunches.  Headed up north to film for Season 5 for It’s Sew Easy soon.  And…I’m going to need more coffee.

Hope you all are well.  Leave me note, catch me up on what’s new with you!  I hope you are finding challenges in life as opportunities for positive changes and enjoying moments everyday.

 

: : handmade gift giving ideas from two peas : :

photo of Christmas Stocking Pocket banner

Just some ideas from my stash to share with you if you’re still working on gifts (or like me, just starting, literally…to make and shop).  My tutorials page has  handbags, accessories, fun household items, thrifty makeovers, refashions and more.  A few are videos and I think you’ll enjoy them.  So, hop over and visit my TUTORIALS page and find something you love to sew up!

If you make something from my tutorials – drop me a line and share!  I love to see what you craft up!

Now…I’m off to sew!  Earwarmers, scarves and new Hazel Hipsters …my Two Peas gave me a wish list!

Want to sew with me?  Save 25% right now through December 21st, 2012 ($20/ each) on either of my video courses – The Tie Tote or The Hazel Hipster - 2 of my most popular patterns.  They go together quick and the videos are wonderful because it’s like having a private lesson in your home.  (discount given via paypal refund after puchase).  Buy both classes and save even more – purchase both classes and save 35%.

Happy Sewing!

 

: : decking the halls : :

Striped drapes hanging at large window

One thing I don’t own is a decent camera.  I’m cheap.  Good cameras are expensive.  And since we are now like most Americans, barely getting by with a huge increase in our health care payments, groceries and gas…well, iphone pics will suffice.  Once in awhile I throw in the old Kodak Easy Share 4mp camera…yes, I know.  Someday…someday.

So…in my desire to prep our halls for the holidays, I had purchased some neutral fabrics to make drapery panels.  I have always had valences hanging at this large window in our living room but I was ready for a change.  They were so outdated.

I wasn’t sure if I was loving the stripes at first but now I love them.  Love, love, love.

Here’s how I did it.  First, I measured from the curtain rod to where I wanted them to drop then I added in seam allowances plus 2″.  The math got tricky here.  I had to figure out how many stripes did I want, how big they would be, add in the seam allowances, etc…I suck at math.  Truly, I do.  But with some trial and error I got to the point of a workable number and got to cutting my panels.  I have a very wide window I was covering and I knew I would never close these drapes so I made panels that were much narrower than my window thus saving on fabric and $$.

striped drape panel

Once I got my two panels pieced, I lined them with a bed sheet.  I bought a queen size sheet set and it worked perfectly.  Right sides facing, I sewed all the way around leaving a gap towards the top for my curtain rod plus an opening for turning the panel.  Turn the panel right side out and press.  I used steam a seam to close my opening where I turned the panels.  Then, I went back to where the gap is for the curtain rod and sewed across twice – large enough for my rod to fit – creating a casing.  Repeat for your other panel.

striped drapes hung at window

Voila.  Pretty simple.  Quick.  Cheaper than store bought (but still a little pricey in my opinion).  They brightened up this old room and gave it just the right punch for the holidays.

No pattern needed.  Just your math skills and some creativity.  You can do this, I promise!

: : holiday wreath workshop : :

 

Join me at The Corner Smiths on December 1st and 2nd – we will be crafting up some amazing holiday wreaths, munching on snacks, and trying not to glue our fingers together.

December 1st – 7 to 9pm and on December 2nd – 2 to 4pm.  The cost is $35 / person.  Bring a glue gun, your favorite beverage (we will have stemware on hand), and a friend.

Register asap as seats are filling and space is limited.  Call or email or stop at the shop : : Phone / 614.834.9725.  Email / cornersmiths@gmail.com.  Shop address / 1 South High Street, Canal Winchester, OH 43110.

See you there!