The Woodstock Bag

One of the first designers I worked with as a pattern tester is Natalie Santini, of Sew Hungry Hippie. She is a gem – creative, talented, spunky, no-nonsense and always coming up with new projects. She loves COLOR and so do I. Fast forward to today…more than a year and a half since our paths crossed, and it’s release day for her Woodstock Bag pattern. Pattern Release days are exciting times. Ironic, that for two people who love bright & bold fabric, I made it in black cork and camo. It’s spring, but thanks to Covid-19, we’ve all been in quarantined/sheltered in place. Maybe there’s still a vibe of winter around here. Or you know me well and know I almost always wear black, so this matches.

The Woodstock Bag is a waist (or “fanny-pack”) style accessory, but the adjustable strap also allows for it to be worn over the shoulder. The zipper closure at the top will keep your contents secure. This design lets you move about & shop, hands-free, without the worry of setting your bag down. It is roomier than you might expect, thanks to darts, which expand the front panel just a bit.

This pattern is a quick make & I used supplies I have on hand. Notice the mixed metals, between the D-ring and the adjustable slide? I’d like to say it’s a creative design choice, but it was literally a supply availability issue. Maybe it will be a 2020 trend? Me, a trendsetter? Now that’s funny. If you’ve not sewn with cork, faux leather or vinyl, give it a try. Natalie carries a lot of these items in her shop and it’s simpler to use than you might imagine. I highly recommend a teflon foot for your machine, to minimize “drag”, but other than that, I’ve not made other adjustments in sewing cork. I look forward to making more of these in other textiles and colors, which will be posted to my Instagram account (@twoterriersstudio) as they are finished.

Take a minute and go visit Natalie on Instagram (@sewhungryhippie) where you’ll see links to her tutorials, patterns and MORE. Allow time – it’s a creative spot & if you’re like me, you might be there awhile.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to test patterns before they are released to the public. It lets me stretch my skills, finish a new project, work with other makers and incorporate my education and former career in editing. The whole thing makes me happy. Natalie, THANK YOU!

All photos and content property of Two Terriers Studio, not to be reproduced without consent. While I share what I love by other makers, this is not a paid or sponsored post.

Face Masks

It’s April 2020 and for weeks (months, at this point) we have been experiencing a global pandemic from Novel Coronavirus / Covid-19 that has left many of us wondering what the heck is going on, what it means for us personally and how we manage through this unprecedented time.

We started “social distancing” in late February and early March; we prepared our homes and family for isolating as this invisible nightmare passed, but here we are, still waiting for a return to what we know as “normal”. I can’t imagine what our new normal even looks like yet.

My primary concern was keeping my family and loved ones safe. Besides self-imposed isolation, #stayhome, wash your hands, and disinfect everything in sight, what could I do? That “let me fix it” gene kicked in and I started making face masks. Hearing that the supply of medical grade personal protective equipment (PPE) was not only low, but might run out, I realized I wasn’t going to be ordering any for personal use. Never in my 9 years of sewing & quilting did I think I would be making protective gear. But I am; and I’m now making them for others too.

I have zero interest in profiting off of a pandemic. I’m offering these handmade face masks on my Instagram account (@twoterriersstudio) while I have the time and supplies to make them. I’m asking readers to cover the cost of shipping ($7.75 flat rate, USPS Priority Mail) and to make a charitable contribution of $5.00 per mask. In the event of a large, bulk order, shipping fee may increase. I’m accepting payment by PayPal. When I get to the end of making masks, I will be donating 100% of profits to charity, so any contribution over this amount is appreciated. I’m tracking every sale by state, # of masks and contribution and that will be a follow up post at some point. At this time, I am only shipping within the continental United States, as I am doing this from home & not going into the post office. I think it’s a full circle of compassion…I’m using a skill I learned from others to make a product that might help people stay safe, and their contribution is in turn helping someone else. This may be a scary and negative time, but goodness prevails. Right?

Handmade face masks

I must say, my handmade masks are NOT medical grade; they do not have a filter insert and I would not promise that they prevent Covid-19. I can say that they are made from quality quilting cotton that has been washed and sewn in a pet-free, smoke-free studio by a maker who has practiced social distancing since early March and who shows no outward signs of being infected. For those who have worked with me before and ordered custom totes, bags and other items, you know that I work to make sure your color and style preferences are met. That is not happening with face masks. I’m not taking color preferences or custom designs. This is a function over fashion moment. My masks do feature two fabrics so that the user knows which side was next to their skin and which was exposed to the outside. The masks are all machine-washable and should be washed frequently. If you’d like the pleats to be crisp after washing, a quick press with a hot iron will work.

If you or someone you know needs a mask, please visit my Instagram account @twoterriersstudio and direct message me there with your name and quantity needed. I will follow up as promptly as possible. I am taking time off until April 13th to celebrate the Easter holiday with my family, but will be in communication after that time.

My hesitation in making masks for people outside my immediate family is that there is a VERY fine line between helping others and creating a false sense of security. I kindly ask that anyone wearing my masks please educate themselves with the safety guidelines set forth by your physicians, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or ever-changing, published/professional guidelines. I am not a doctor, a nurse or health-care provider. I know these masks are not foolproof, but I wear mine with the mindset of “better than nothing” if I need to go outside. I cannot and do not ensure this will protect you 100% from an infection. So, I’m happy to make these, but expect that buyers educate themselves as we are all learn about this disease and how to be safe. (UGH, all the disclaimer stuff; wish I didn’t have to say it.)

I wish you all good health in these trying times. Many heartfelt thanks to our healthcare heroes who work tirelessly each day to keep each of us safe. I hope we all do our part to make their jobs easier so that they, too, can return home safely to their loved ones.

2019 Handmade Holidays Buyer’s Guide

It’s the middle of November and while many of us may be consumed with thoughts of Thanksgiving and celebrating with family and friends, it seems conversation often turns to holiday shopping, wish lists, unique gifts and bargains.

Just about everyone I know is interested in making or finding the perfect gift for a loved one. As a maker, with many maker friends, I also know what the holidays mean from this perspective. Makers work all year to create special items. When someone buys this work, it means our effort, artistry and love are being shared out in the world, beyond our studio doors. It’s a cool and affirming moment! When you support local makers, you are supporting a dream of someone in your community while at the same time, giving a gift that is likely one of a kind. It’s a win-win scenario.

Recently, I was contacted by Molly Anthony (@mkranthony) of The Found Art Walk to be included in her Handmade Holiday Buyers’ Guide. What an honor; no hesitation before I said, “yes”! Molly and her friend, Jenny Maroney (@jennymaroney), have put together the attached guide to help with your 2019 Handmade Holiday Shopping and this also serves as an introduction to many artists whose creativity is beautifully captured in a variety of mediums. Click on the link below to see the guide. The Table of Contents will highlight each artist and the individual pages feature clickable links to that particular artist’s online site. I hope you’ll take a look around, meet some new people, shop handmade and enjoy the benefits of the discounts offered. Invite friends to follow these makers on social media and to subscribe to my blog for future updates. Be sure to also follow me on Instagram @twoterriersstudio to see the latest holiday offerings and details of pop-up shops. I have a special discount in the buyer’s guide, so let me help you give unique art this holiday season!

I look forward to working with you as we close out 2019, but I must also say a huge, THANK YOU, for your support of me and Two Terriers Studio this year. What a journey and a privilege to share what I make with all of you! Happy Holidays & all the best in the year ahead.