Merry Christmas 2019

It's been a magical December for all of us here at Tweetle Dee!  Our family gathered together as often as we could and enjoyed every second of it.  We had a Kiddo Christmas with just the kids was crazy elfin fun.  Then we had the family party with food, games, and an ugly Christmas Cookie decorating party.  It's a real thing at our house.
Christmas morning we woke up to a heavy blanket of new fallen snow.  It was pure magic.  If you follow me on Instagram you know that this shot of our back yard is our one of my favorites.  I take it every year, and sometimes more than one shot shows up on my feed...but this Christmas morning with the silence of the snow, it was especially beautiful.

Many of our children were in other parts of the country, so it was a more quiet Christmas than we are used to.  We miss our family, but with the different parties and Face Time we were able to feel close.  This will be Adam's last Christmas with us before he leaves on his mission, and my Mom heart could feel it.

We bought him luggage and mission scriptures and a special wallet engraved with a Mother's wish for him.  He cried, I cried and Mike had to get busy picking up wrapping paper so he wouldn't.  He is the youngest of this big family and I think all of us will miss him being with us for the next two years.

It was also Molly's first Christmas and she loved the sugar cookies and her presents.  It took her a while to figure out what to do with them, but she hugged them all.  Gracie is almost at the age to figure out the whole Santa story and had lots of faith that the giving of the Christmas season is real, no matter who the giver is.

One of the best parts of the season was the prayers that we gave asking to find people we could give to, and we found our hearts growing each week as opportunities for giving came in ways we did not expect.  I really know that we are given what we need and this year I think my Mom heart was held whole as we gave more than ever.  

Christmas morning with a house full of kids sleeping in every room, left me one quiet place, this seat on the couch.  No one wanted to wake up early, so I sat in silence and watched the sun come up over the mountain and cast a blue light through our windows.  It was the reflection of light on the new snow and I was a gift for me. 

 I love this season more now than at any other time in my life.  I recognize the calm of peace more than ever and love the stillness it brings.  I hope this season was a beautiful one for you and your family, and if it wasn't, let me send you a hug and a hope that time passes and things that are hard change in time.  I send you my love for the rest of 2019 and will see you in 2020 with an exuberance for the new year!

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Prairie Christmas Trees and Fred the Snowman

Most of you know we flip houses in our family....lots of houses.  This year has been a record year for the number of old homes we have tackled and our last one just closed.  Which means the best of all the old doors, windows, knobs and trim have made their way to the Tweetle Dee storage building.  We were going though it the other day and I asked Mike if he would make some trees for my front porch that I could paint with our soon to release Prairie Paints.

Well, not only did he make a few...he made over 30 of them in all different sizes.  I love, love, love that he trimmed them in walnut and made their stands to interlock so they fit together as a grove.  But, the thing I love the most about them is the angles he cut them at to show off the moldings and door knob holes.  Seriously so cute!  They come in four sizes from 50" tall to 24" tall and, come in four colors (white, pink, light green, and dark green).  Don't delay in getting them because they will go quickly.  

So we have a forest of them and I placed them in Our Shop for this week, ready to ship and of course FREE SHIPPING!!!  We have free shipping on all orders this week.  Use code SHIPFORFREE.  I am keeping mine up until the flowers bloom again!

Along with our Prairie Christmas Trees we also have new to our shop Fred the Snowman!  He is a dear friend on Frosty's and ours.  He loves the snow and all the fun it brings.  He stands 24" tall and is pieced with so many hand carved embellishments and ohhh, that scarf!  Crackled paint and all, he is a darling that will be with you from first snowfall to the hint of spring.

We hope you enjoy these new products to our shop and remember to order before next Friday the 20th to get your items before Christmas & we have FREE SHIPPING through this week with code SHIPFORFREE.

Have a fabulous Merry weekend!
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Village Square Barn Quilt

Our newest barn quilt, the Village Square was inspired by the small town I grew up in in New York.  One main street went through the center of town with beautiful old homes, a country store, a library, fire station and the community church.  No gas stations or movie theaters, and definitely no big box stores.  Whenever we visit, no matter how much time has passed, it remains unchanged.  

I love those small village squares and because I am from New York, the big pines had to be make a statement in this quilt.  I am working on a fabric quilt version of this and a pattern book too, which should be out the first of the year.  It will also include templates for wreaths, mini barn quilts and lettered signs. 

For now, this holiday season, the simple Village Square Barn Quilt is in The Shop in three gorgeous sizes.  I can't wait for the orders to come, because this is one of the funnest barn quilts to paint.  It really is magical, which is what this season is all about.  

We send our love to you and hope you are enjoying the beginning of the holiday season.  Remember to take some time to rest amid all the celebrating....a little time to dream and for sure some time to create something new.   

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Thanksgiving Pie in a Lid

As you know, I am soooo in love with pie anything.....pies in a jar, pie pops, pie bites, pie...pie...pie etc.!  I thought I had mastered them all until I thought of "pies in a lid".

They are the easiest most simple way to make a little individual pie I have ever seen!  All you need is a wide mouth canning jar lid and ring, a baking sheet, non-stick spray, your favorite pie dough and filling.  Lay the rings on a baking sheet and place the lids inside the rings.  Spray with a coat of non-stick spray and press your pie dough into the lid.

I found the easiest way to do this was to find a round "template" to cut the dough out.  I used a round plastic bowl just a half inch larger than my wide mouth rings.  This allows for extra dough to pinch into a lovely crust.  Pour in your filling and bake at a normal temperature.  I have found that these little pies bake in a quarter of the time of a regular set your timer accordingly.
Once they are finished baking let cool a few minutes and pop the ring and bottom off the shell and serve! They come out perfect every time.  I am busy making some up for our family's Thanksgiving feast...a little apple, pear & cranberry, and of course pumpkin!  I hope you have fun with this new little idea!!!

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Watercolor Embroidery

After weeks away teaching at conferences and filming upcoming projects (to be announced later),  I am so happy to be home and to have everything put away...and to be able to play with my favorite things - paint & fabric!  To be more specific watercolor and embroidery on fabric.  Did you know you can watercolor on fabric just as you do on paper?  If not, you are in for a crazy, fun surprise.

You all know I love to paint and I especially love the way color blends and fades in watercolor.  You also know I love to paint florals and trust me when I say that nothing mimics the color of naturals flowers than watercolors.  So, one day I was wanting a background for a floral I was planning to stitch and I got out my watercolors and painted the background I was dreaming of on my fabric, and fell in love with it.

All you need for watercolor is available in most craft stores, and the fabric and hoops are there one stop and you can have it all!  You will want watercolor paints, brushes, a tray to mix on, fabric, a hoop, and of course your thread and needle.  We will talk about that later.

Just look at those colors!  Seriously so pretty.  You will want to choose in your mind what type of watercolor application you need for your stitch.  Meaning, do you want an all over landscape or sky scene where you float colors across the fabric OR do you want a more controlled pop on color such as a leaf or a specific flower.  

Once you have decided, place your fabric tightly in the hoop.  You can paint on anything that is smooth (such as a cotton or linen)  don't use a velvet or minky.  Make sure your fabric in "drum tight".  

If you are planning on an all over color, you will begin by spritzing the fabric with water.  This will help with getting your colors to move and blend on the fabric.  Place the colors you want in a tray and mix a little water in them to get them ready to use.  You will want to wet your brush.  Use a large size watercolor brush for all over color.

Begin by dipping your brush in water and color and then on your fabric with light soft strokes across the area you want color.  You can add a little extra water with your brush to float the color across the fabric.  Add a second complimentary color if you want above or below the first color and blend together with your brush and a little water until your landscape or sky scene is all across the fabric area.  Let dry and then it is ready to stitch on.

If you are wanting a small specific area painted in, I draw out my design first with a Pilot Frixion pen that comes off with heat.  Do not spritz your fabric for this type of watercolor as you do not want your colors spreading beyond your design element.  Load your brush with a base color and fill in the element your are painting.  Wipe your brush and paint a second color and shade using a little water on your brush.  

Have fun with trying different colors and blending them.  It doesn't matter if the lines are filled in because the heat will remove them after we are done.  If you want specific detail added, use watercolor pencils over the fabric.  Just as you would on paper, the watercolor pencils work beautifully to shade and blend colors.  

On this little flower I want to shade it in softly, so I used my watercolor pencil and gently added color to the fabric and then...

...I used a damp brush to soften the lines and edges of the pencil.  I can't wait to add embroidery floss to this holiday design.  Multi-medium projects are so fun!

This is the finished Joy Watercolor Embroidery Wreath!  I love the pop of shaded green in the leaves with the detail of pine needles made with embroidery floss.  We will be adding this kit and a few more to the shop in time for Christmas.  So, watch for the announcement next week.  In the meantime, get out a scrap of fabric and your watercolors and paint yourself a gorgeous November sunset.  

To watch a tutorial on the prep and painting go to the Tweetle Dee Design Co. You Tube Channel.  The video will be uploaded this weekend.  You can also catch today's Fresh Living segment to see the gorgeous sunset Kari made.  

I hope you have a fabulous weekend and be sure to take care to rest and refresh however you do it.  For me, we will be watching the lighting of the town tree tonight and maybe a movie.  Tomorrow is a full day with teaching at the Corn Wagon in Springville.  I can't wait!  I'll check in with you next week to see what you did to celebrate, dream and create!

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DIY Coffee Filter Wreath

You know those little white coffee filters that are right next to those yummy coffee beans in the supermarket isle?  Well, they are not only great for filtering coffee grounds out of your cup of Joe, they make beautiful vintage inspired paper flower wreaths.  To purchase these wreaths you will spend upwards of $120.00 to $175.00.  I'm not kidding!  However, to make one yourself, you will spend under $10.00.    Today on KUTV Fresh Living we demonstrated how to make a DIY Coffee Filter Wreath, Garland, Pom, and even a Christmas Tree.


2 Packages of White Coffee Filters
1 Foam Wreath Base
Dressmaker Pins
Hot Glue
Instant Coffee (optional)

These wreaths are so simple to make that anyone can make one...even little hands.  There are some tricks to getting a boutiques look and I'm about to share those secrets with you.  To make a Winter White DIY Coffee Filter Wreath all you need is the white filters and you can skip the coffee dye step.  

If you want your wreath to have an aged look, then coffee staining is the best way to get the variation in color to each of those filters.  I have a simple way to accomplish this.  You can hand dip each one and let them air dry.  It works, but is super time consuming.  My favortie way to dye these filters is to take a stack of filters and dip them into a large pot of dissolved instant coffee.

To make the instant coffee, fill a pot about half way with water and dump into it a couple of cups of instant coffee.  Heat and stir and there is your dye ready for dipping.  Take your stack of coffee filters and dunk them into the pot of coffee.  You can separate them into 1/2 inch chunk sections and lightly wring them out.  The wringing will keep some of the filters darker than others with the coffee settling in to creases.

Set your wrung out filters on an old towel and then place into your cloths dryer.  Dry for 10 minutes on a delicate cycle.  That is all it takes to dry the filters.  In addition to drying the filters, the moisture and heat makes the filters crinkle and soften to almost a translucent texture.  This change in the texture of the paper filters makes for gorgeous "flowers" when layered into a wreath.

To make a petal.  Take one filter and fold in half.  Then fold in half again to make a quarter fold.  Then, fold again to create a little "pie" wedge.  

Once you have your wedge, fold the bottom or point up just a little about an inch from the point.  This is where you will pin it into place.

Use a dressmaker pin and a thimble to pin the petal into place.  You will only need to cover the sides and front of the wreath.  Leave the back plain so your wreath will lay flat against your wall or door.  So begin by pinning one row from the outside edge to the inside edge.  Place the petal edges close together so there are no gaps where you would see the foam base.

One layer, then two, then three...then a hundred!  Push the paper petals back and keep adding more rows and just when you think it is enough, add more.  You want your wreath to be full of petals which can then be fluffed to look like paper flowers.  You can see how they begin to form after a few rows.

I love to place petals that have more coloring on the outside and up front where they will be seen.  Sometimes I will fold a petal with one edge sticking up more than the other to give the petal more depth and add it in next to one that is perfectly folded to give the wreath a more textured and realistic look.

Continue adding more filters until you make it all the way around your wreath form.  

Your back will not look too pretty, but no one will see your back!  When it is full all the way to the top and you have added even more....turn your wreath over and fluff or adjust the petals in a manner that looks full and beautiful to your eye.  This is why using pins is so helpful versus hot glue.  It allows you to adjust your petals to be what you want them to be.

To create a hanger, clip a piece of wire about 5" long and push both ends into the form.  Use a dot of hot glue and the push-in point to secure the hanger in place.  Your wreath is ready to embellish and hang.

To embellish your DIY Coffee Filter Wreath, drape ribbons over the wreath hook and let them flow down.  I love to have one large bow at the top.  You can also find word pieces such as Merry Christmas, or Happy Holidays to make even more of a holiday statement.  Switch out your ribbons with different colors for different seasons OR leave them plain for a beautiful Farmhouse inspired everyday wreath.

I hope this written tutorial helps you feel ready to make one of these for your own home.  I have the two white ones that hang every year on my double black doors for the winter months and my coffee stained one hangs in my bedroom over a vintage window.  It is perfect!  Don't forget to check out the segment on KUTV Fresh Living and message me if you have any questions!  

Celebrate, Dream and Create a little joy in your life today!

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Yarrow is Love

"Everlasting Love" is the meaning given to one of the most beautiful wildflower/herb in the garden.   Bushes of yellow, red, orange and pink grow in every garden around our property.  They grow each year as our perennials sprout and keep the deer away.  I'm not sure if that is why they are called the "Everlasting Love" plant, but I pledge my love to them for keeping my gardens protected.

Yarrow is one of the oldest herbs recorded in history and was used for protection and to ward off dangerous spirits...not saying that deer are dangerous, but I suppose they are to my other flowers.  Just kidding!  I love the deer at our home on the mountain.  

Besides it's symbolism, the vibrant little flowers come in all of my favorite golden colors and even when dried, they fade into a warm amber and stay through to the first snow.  As a embroidery artist they look like tons of little French Knots all piled together in the formation of a cloud.  

As I designed this month's pattern, I wanted the simple lines to stand tall as their stems and all of the dots to be the millions of golden to amber buds on each flower.  It is a simple pattern to transfer and to embroider.

To transfer the pattern right click on the photo at the end of this post.  Print on your home computer.  Place the paper on a light source (window or light box), lay your stitching cloth over the top of the paper so that you can see the design under the fabric.  Trace the design onto the fabric using a heat sensitive pen (Frixxon).  

Choose green floss for the stems and petals.  Use three to six strands when stitching to get the maximum texture.  Use a variegated floss to increase the natural color variations.  DMC has beautiful variegation, as does Cosmo and Wonderfil.  Stem Stitch the stems.  Laisy Daisy the leaves.  and lots of French Knots for the flowering buds.  All of the stitches can be watched on the Tweetle Dee You Tube Channel.  

I'm crazy in love with this flower/herb, and I hope you enjoy stitching it too!  Watch my Instagram stories for how I used one of my Yarrow plants to dye some stitching fabric to make a individual Flourish Botanical piece.  The fabric is soaking now into a gorgeous golden color.  I can't wait to share it.  

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Pinners 2019

This year has been amazing and one of the most memorable parts will be presenting at Pinners!  We have traveled across the country and taught huge classes of men and women how to embroider and weave floss like a boss!  We just returned from Dallas and are catching our breath before the SLC and Phoenix events.

We are proud to have been a part of this event for the past three years and can't wait for some exciting new products coming to our booth in SLC on November 1st and 2nd and in Pheonix the following weekend.  We will be teaching two classes in each city and hope you come join us and a few thousand others for the crafting event of all time!

The best part of being a presenter at Pinners is the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people from all over the country.  It doesn't matter which city we are in, we meet new friends.  Some of our dearest friends have been the other presenters that we get to hang with in between classes.  Honestly, if I wasn't a presenter, I would be be getting my own ticket and camping out in every class I could take.  They are all amazing!  I have learned how to watercolor, hand letter, make birthstones bracelets and decorate cookies with my logo!

For tickets and information on classes and to sign up for the Tweetle Dee Classes...go to the Pinners site and follow the prompts to register.  Our classes fill quickly, but we always bring extra kits and can always fit someone in.  We hope to see all our Utah and AZ peeps in a few weeks!  

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