::sew sew sew along::

A couple of fun finds I had to share…

Come over to Sew Sweetness for an Ava Bag Sew Along…Quilthome.com is even offering a nice discount for participants on fabric and the pattern(s).   Later this summer, they will be doing the Madison Bag.  I have some goodies planned for those who participate (which may or may not be some finished bags…)

Sarah B Designs is leading a sew along of the Oliver + S Family Reunion Dress.  So adorable…loads of fun!  What are you sewing up right now?  Or special projects coming up?  Wanna share some fun links of your own?  Post them in the comments section so we can check them out!



A Two Peas Spring Challenge

{the voting is now closed}

Are you up to the challenge?  Well, a few weeks ago I asked that question and a few of you said “YES!”.

I just thought it would be a good idea to get our brains thinking towards sunshine, green grass, and blooming flowers after months of knee deep snow and slush that has covered most of the US.  Am I right?  Are you ready for Spring?!?

Here’s the challenge::  Set a handmade Spring scene.  Anything.  Handmade.  Bright.  Cheery.  Fun.  Handmade.

YOU – the readers, get to choose the “Springy-est”.  Now, I must warn you, they are all kinds of cute and thoughtful and wonderfully crafted.  It will be hard to pick just one but just one is all you can pick!

Leave a comment with your pick (please one vote per person).  The “Springy-est” will be rewarded with some bright and cheery two peas store credit in the amount of $50!  Woot! Woot!

Here they are:

#1) Jenny Jo

Jenny Jo of Nebraska submitted this lovely little number she just stitched up!  Her six year old daughter is loving her new Feliz dress designed by Studio Tantrum and made from the Pop Garden fabric collection by Heather Bailey.  She looks a wee bit cold out there Mom!  And absolutely adorable!

#2) Ann W

Looks like these American Girls are getting ready to start their gardens!

Ann W.  shares, “My daughter made the seed stand out of boxes covered with fabric.  She printed the little seed packets and I made most of the little bags.  When I read your post about a spring set up, I thought we could do something with our dolls.  I mentioned it to my daughter and we eventually came up with the seed stand idea.”

Check out all the detail – and the seed signs!  And, what’s this?  Cute farmers market totes?  Great job!  You can follow Ann on her blog Winters Edge Home.

#3) Ms. Muffin

Ms. Muffin shared, “I made this adorable apron skirt from a pattern from Little Lizard King for my daughter as a Christmas present. I think the colors look so lovely together and was so happy with how it turned out. And my daughter loved it, too. And she did love to be allowed to jump on her bed for the photo shoot, too.” I think the photo below is the pre “Mom can I jump on the bed?” shot.  Fabulous! Connect with Ms. Muffin on her blog muffins n more .

#4) Sara U.

This rainbow brought to you by Sara U.

“Here’s my little rainbow sitting in the clouds enjoying the rain with a splash of sunshine in her hair.  🙂 This dress was my own design.  It’s a band of fabric like a choker that buttons around the neck, a fitted bodice that gathers at the “choker” on the front and back.  The skirt is bands of fabric sewn together in a tube and gathered at the top to attach to the bodice.  I took the lace at the bottom from a dress I had but didn’t wear and added the ric-rac and flower for extra fun.”

She’s just looking like a perfect pot of gold!  Follow Sara on her blog The Pretty Pickle.
That’s it gang!  Our 4 entries…tweet, facebook, blog away and encourage others to come see the challenge and vote for their favorite!  Best of luck – they are ALL FABULOUS!  Thank you so much for crafting away and making Spring seem a wee bit closer!
{Grab a button girls and add it to your blogs if you’d like! Here’s the code to paste with it!

<a target=”_blank” href=”http://twopeasinapoddesigns.com/2011/01/25/a-two-peas-spring-challenge/”><br><br><img border=”0″ width=”125″ alt=”Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs” src=”http://i486.photobucket.com/albums/rr225/2peasinapoddesigns/springchallenge-2-1.jpg”></a>


From trash to treasure

I am not ashamed to admit…I will stop the car on a dime, make my husband go back, come to a screeching halt…for a good trash find.  Is there a better way to furnish than reclaimed trash finds?  I think not!

Over the summer, I got SUPER lucky in that a friend was moving and her trash – MY TREASURE!

Here’s a lovely little chair I got that day.  Trash?  Look at those beautiful bones?  I couldn’t wait to work on it…but a few other things were going on at the time and it has been sitting in my garage until last week.

I pulled her out.  Sanded her down.  Ripped that nasty seat down to the bare wood.  Then down in our basement, after the kids were gone and after I dropped Sprout at a sitters for the afternoon, I painted this little beauty.  I had been dreaming of a pretty little turquoise color or an apple green.  But with the seat fabric I chose, had to go with the apple green.  And I LOVE IT!


Used an old bed pillow I had (cuz I keep our old pillows…and make cute covers for them for our outdoor furniture).  I cut the bed pillow in half to get it to fit the seat (do you know how expensive foam is?  Yikes!  I say reuse – repurpose!!)  I used a gorgeous LOVE fabric from the Amy Butler collection to cover the seat.

Add to it a folding table from a discount store for $10, an old bed sheet I cut up and added ruffles to cover the table and viola!  A new little office desk space for me in my sewing room!

Are you a trash to treasure hunter too?





a little sewing room inspiration

I’m prepping this evening for my sewing class I’m teaching tomorrow.   I typically try to bring a little something for my students.  Candy and treats or a little sewing something or other.

And since I spent all day packaging sewing pattern orders during our snow day {oh yes, I think half the US had a snow day today, right? The two peas LOVE to bag patterns…I don’t know why but I am thankful} I was feeling craft-deprived.  Haven’t had my hands in any glue lately or threads on my clothes in days!

So, I crafted up these little jars for my girls coming to my class tomorrow.  You could fill them with buttons, hold your scissors, bobbins, tags…all kinds of things!

Wanna make one too for your sewing room?  Super easy…here’s the 411.


  • glass jar
  • glue gun
  • ribbon
  • scrap fabric
  • small piece of batting
  • computer printer fabric (I’ll explain more about this)
  • your computer and printer
  • cute tiny little clothes pins
  • seed beads

I found the computer printer fabric at my local JoAnn’s.  Very simple to use.  Just load it into your printer like regular paper.  It has a paper back that you peel off after the ink dries.

I found the wreath design at The Graphics Fairy.  If you have never been to her site before…oh, are you in for a treat.  Fabulous graphics for you to use.  She’s a REAL fairy…I love her.  I then typed the word sew and placed it in the center of the wreath design and then printed it on the fabric.

Once you have your image on the fabric, cut it out and set it aside.  Next, cut some scrap fabric a little bit larger than your image fabric.  Cut TWO (2) per jar – we are going to make these dimensional.

Use some stitch witchery or fusible something or other to fuse your image to one of the scrap fabric pieces.

Next, cut a disc of batting to fit in between the scrap fabric – one with the image on it and a piece for the back.  Make a sandwich.  Layer these up with the scrap fabric pieces wrong sides facing and the batting in the middle.

Now, stitch.  I started from the outer edge and went all the around in a spiral until I reached the center.

Next, use your hot glue gun and adorn the printed fabric with beads.  Hot glue the ribbon around the top of the jar.  Use your teeny tiny little bitty itsy bitsy clothes pins to clip your fabric to the ribbon and add a bit of glue here and there to be sure it all stays together.

How cute is this?  Wouldn’t this be cute as a gift for a sewer and fill it up with fun bling bling buttons and and ribbons and other fun trims?  I’d love it!

If you make one – we’d love to see it!  Share it over on my Facebook page.

Don’t forget!!!  Get crafting this weekend – you have until January 24th to submit your entry for my Spring Challenge.  Click on the icon to read more about – including the $50 shop credit you could win!!  



Life. Is. Good.

Life is what you make of it.  I truly believe that.  It’s all about choices.  Following your passion.  Being true to your values.  Not being afraid to admit your mistakes.  Rising to the occasion.  Being faithful.  Offering and accepting forgiveness.  Having hope.  Trusting in a higher power.  Laughing out loud often.  Giving lots of hugs.  Celebrating friendships.  And successes.

And with each passing year of my life, I learn these lessons a little more deeply.  Understand them more clearly.  Find peace in who God created me to be.  And not worrying about what I’m not.  Just loving what I am.

2011 is going to be an exciting year.  I’m finding my feet.  Enjoying the journey.  Celebrating the successes.  Small and all.

There are handful of exciting things that I have dreamed about for years.  Watching dreams come to reality is an amazing, amazing thing.  I’m so excited to share with you one of these exciting things coming on the horizon for our family.

I’m going to be working on a new show for PBS called It’s Sew Easy. {insert joyous laughter and hugs here!}

In December, I went for a screen test and had so much fun!  I’m really looking forward to working with the crew and the other experts on the show.  I have NEVER done anything like this in my life – and it is SO much fun thinking about doing something new!  Meeting new people, finding new challenges, learning and sharing.

How cool is this?  YOU could be on the show!  BurdaStyle members can enter the competition to be chosen to do a guest spot on the show!  Go check it out and read all about how you can hook up with Burda and join in on the contest!

The show will be broadcast nationally across the US on PBS.  We begin taping in March and I’ll have many more details to come with great links for the show and projects and more from It’s Sew Easy. {eeeee!!! so excited!}



{a spring time challenge and reward}

Frosty has long since melted...

Around these parts of the Midwest currently, the snow has melted for the moment and the grass is brown and it’s cold.  It’s kinda gray and we are missing our snowman and sledding.

And although I LOVE snow (I seriously LOVE LOVE LOVE snow!) and I’m anxious for more yet this Winter…my mind is starting to drift towards Spring.  How about you?

So…let’s think SPRING together!

Over on my Facebook page I asked for everyone to share some of what they had been crafting up for the holidays and it was really fun to see what some of you were stitching away.  I thought it might be fun to do the same thing here on the blog.

{Here’s my Spring time challenge:  Set a spring scene.}

Fun little tea party scene.  Your living room with a new throw and pillows.  Your little one dolled up in a new outfit for her and her doll. Something colorful, fun, bright and SPRING like!  Use your own creations, use a pattern…you decide.  But just make it something that shouts SPRING!  Really, the sky is the limit.  Just something that when we look at it makes you go, “Ahh, how sweet!” and makes you smile because it’s just so darn, well, bright and cheery!

Then, once you have your fun bright spring creation all set up – take a photo and email it to me.  I’ll post them all on my blog and let all of you vote on your favorites.  The winner will receive a $50 shop credit for Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs.

Deadline to enter is January 24th and I’ll post all of the entries up on January 26th.  I’ll leave it up for one week for voting.  Sound like a fun challenge?  I hope so!  Can’t wait to see what you come up with!  You all are awesome!

(And to help you out with a little inspiration – use the coupon code “springfling” in my etsy shop and receive 25% off any of my sewing patterns now through January 15th.  Funky, ruffly, button covered, applique pillows, quilts, bag, dresses, aprons, flower banners…lots of fun things for Spring – just to get you ready for Easter and all!)

Oh look!  A cute little button you can grab if you’re playing along!  (I’ll fix the url to the post with all of your entries later…I’ll post a new code so you can adjust.) But for now, try this:

<a target=”_blank” href=”http://twopeasinapoddesigns.com”><br><br><img border=”0″ width=”125″ alt=”Two Peas in a Pod Homegrown Designs” src=”http://i486.photobucket.com/albums/rr225/2peasinapoddesigns/springchallenge-2-1.jpg”></a&gt;

Have fun!



A Little Piece of Daddy or Mommy…close to my heart

For many families…they will be celebrating the 4th of July as a single parent.  They have a spouse who is serving our country and find that while we are all enjoying our freedoms that make America great – they are juggling everyday to take care of the house, the kids, work and worry and wait until their soldier comes home.

Last week, my cousin Annette mentioned that my “Little Piece of Daddy” post from Earth Day would be a great project for those families.  What a perfect way to keep Daddy close then for a little girl to wear one of her Daddy’s shirts.  My girls loved this project when we made these for just that reason.  It was a way to be close to their Daddy.

I thought it was worth repeating the first project I shared plus a new one with a t-shirt I made up last week.  These are both really quick.  Really easy.  And your kids will love more than anything that they get to wear something of Daddy’s.

This camo t-shirt actually belonged to one of the Peas.  To make it into a dress for Sprout, here’s what I did.  First, I cut the sleeves off and followed the outline from one of her tank tops to give the armholes a correct curve and size.

Like this {only this was for the button down shirt dress I'll show you below. Same concept for construction.}

That will help you get the sizing down to a fit for your little one.  I saved the sleeves.  I cut the sleeves into strips, sewed a gathering stitch in hunter orange across the top (I say hunter orange like I meant to use that thread…I actually just didn’t feel like changing the thread colors plus I like a little pop of color on the camo) of each strip and pulled / gathered it to fit on the front of the shirt.  I made 4 total strips.

You can see the top two strips I used the part of the sleeve that had the hem.  The next two were left raw.  It’s knit, it won’t fray much so it’s ok to leave as is.  (and I’m a lazy sewer…I was going for the “a dress in 20 minute” look)  I layered each row just under the last row until all 4 rows were sewn on.

Then I wanted to add a couple of little roses.From the sleeves I cut off, I cut a couple of strips about 1/2″ wide.  Starting in the center of my rose, I stitched right down the middle of that strip, slowly, and kept pulling and turning into a circle.  As I sewed, I kept moving my last row out of the way so as not to stitch it down or over it.  With my stitches down the center of the strip, you pull up the two sides to create your “petals” of the rose…make sense?

Then, with right sides together, I serged the dress from the bottom of the armhole down the cuts I had made to pull the dress back together.  I left the armholes raw meaning I did not hem them or anything – just cut and left them.  They roll in a bit on their own and it looks just fine.  That’s it.  A new dress in minutes…

Now, what dress is not complete without a cute pair of boots, right?  Sprout has great fashion sense.Now, another method is to use a buttondown shirt of Daddy’s and make it a sleeveless dress.  Here, I added ruffles and some additional fabric to the bottom to make a skirt.  {click on the photo and you’ll find the 411 from the original post on this shirt dress}Thank you to all the wonderful men and women who serve our country in the military.  Thank you to your families for the sacrifices they have made so that you can serve to keep us all safe.  Freedom isn’t free and everyday, our family thanks you for giving us our freedom.  May God bless you and hold you in the palm of His hand and carry you safely home.

"Dah bess erica!", Sprout. Translated, God Bless America




{a recipe for fun…}

First take a little of this...

a few snips here and there

a sprinkle of new ideas here and over there...

a sewing class or two inbetween...

add some knits that were clearanced...

a bit of whimsy...

some scraps from the cutting room floor...

a few 5 cent baubles from a garage sale, then add...

a little last minute final pattern draft testing...

Mix well and add two very busy little swimmers on swim team plus a toddler in tow and you have a summer that is whirling around us as fast as can be…promise I’ll be back to share much more about all these little snippets soon!

Enjoy these lazy days of summer!  {stop in over at Etsy it Up…you might find a birthday giveaway or 19! that you want to enter including something from Two Peas…}



Da-da-da-dum {otherwise known as “the wedding song”}

I was commissioned to sew up some little bridesmaid dresses for a wedding in New Orleans this June.  It sounded like a fun task to take on.

It was.  And it wasn’t.

First, they gave me plenty of time.  I procrastinated to the very last moment.  I was so overwhelmed about the prospect of sewing, not a little Sunday’s best kind of dress, but for a gulp, wedding.  Every time I thought about the project, I got a nervous stomach.

Nova is the master sewer for sure.

Well, I got smart.  I called “Super Nova”.  Nova is the mother of my dear friend Barb and she is the seamstress queen.  She spent 4 whole long days with me while we cut, recalculated patterns for custom fits and custom details, stitched, sewed, enjoyed lovely lunches in our sunroom with Sophie and chatted about sewing successes and failures.  

We had 4 machines going.  Lots of thread.  14 yards of fabric. And 4 beautiful sunny days with the most perfect breeze blowing through the house.

I learned a lot from Nova.  She had so many great ideas about how to make things look nicer, changing up the pattern so that the seams were nicer, adding details like a hem that has a faux underskirt look.  We added a nice sash to the dress.  My girls loved them and want one for themselves.  We used both the Lydia and Sophia pattern from Pink Fig Patterns.  (Her patterns are so simple – simple does not necessarily mean short and easy.  We spent around 32 hours making these 4 dresses plus a tie for a little boy.  55+ rows of shirring, 11 tiers of gathering on the skirts…it exhausts me even to type it out)

Best part, the bride was thrilled with them.  Phew!  Ask me if I’ll ever sew for another wedding again?  Um, no.  Never.



Felting a who with what?

My sentiments exactly.

Being snowed in like we were last week…and over the weekend, and again this week…with the snow and the big flakes that won’t seem to stop (I think we are a little over 22″ for the week or so) encouraged me to actually try a few new projects like the crib sheet and necklace…and oh, yes, those boxes.  (hopefully some directions for you this Friday?  Don’t hold your breath though, right?)

I’ve been hearing little snippets or seeing little things here and there about felting. What is that I wondered?  Do I have to have special tools?  Well, it’s pretty simple.

Wool sweater.  Hot water wash.  Tumble dry.  That’s felting.

So, the peas, little sprout and I…

made one of our trips over to see what’s cool at the goodwill store.  I’ve had some pretty good scores there before.

We found some great sweaters.  The quality of wool makes a difference.  One sweater felted much nicer than the other.  One didn’t seem to change the weave very much.  Felting should make it really tight.  After completing my project, and thinking about writing this post…I found this very helpful link.

Found many good sweaters.  I cut into a beautiful Ralph Lauren cashmere blend sweater today for the wrist cuffs in a yummy grape color.  And I’m  in the process of making more of these…which sell like crazy in town at the coffeehouse.And I felted some.  Now what?  What do you do with this stuff?  Well, I did what I do and that is make a bag.  With an owl.  Love my owls.

Not a good view? Let's try another...

Little owl looked lonely so I added some more color to the front too...

the whole texture of the bag is pretty cool...and really sturdy

Yep, a fun project.  And I love upcycling and reusing stuff.  Have you made any cool green projects lately?  Do share!  Send me a link and I’ll share them all in another post soon!



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