Thursday, June 26, 2014

Saying Good-bye to Two Peas in a Bucket


Yesterday morning, I received the news that Two Peas In a Bucket was closing it's online doors.

Discovering Two Peas

In September of 2002 while reading through an issue of Creating Keepsakes Magazine, I saw a little ad advertising an online store and message board forum called "Two Peas In a Bucket." Drawn in by the cute little bucket of peas, I registered as part of the community with the super slick and ultra-secret username of "Hotmonster" (and that's a story for another day).

What I discovered was a community of scrapbookers who quickly and easily answered questions and shared my same interests, as well as, a gallery of beautiful projects that inspired me; not to mention a store that carried top-notch products on the cutting edge of the industry.

I knew I had come home, and I soon began checking the message boards and galleries daily before starting any other part of my daily routine.

Wanting to Become a Garden Girl

Once I came to know the industry and Two Peas better, it quickly became evident that the owner Kristina had a knack for selecting cream-of-the-crop design team members. Known as Garden Girls, these girls went on to win Creating Keepsakes Hall of Fame, and Making Memories Masters contests, write books, travel and teach, and just generally led the industry in knowledge, talent, and inspiration.

I knew that I wanted to be a part of that amazing group of girls; and from the moment I realized how amazing they were, I made it my personal goal to reach that status.

Garden Girls are personally invited to be a part of Two Peas In a Bucket so it seemed nearly impossible to reach a point where my work would be good enough to even catch their eye.

But in late fall of 2008, I received a surprising email asking me if I would be interested in joining the Garden Girl design team. I'll be honest, there was actual jumping up and down and some squealing. I mean, this was the pinnacle of the industry and they asked ME to be a part of it. I was happier and more excited than I can describe.

More than a little intimidated, I wanted my first projects to be as stellar as possible. Here's a peek at one of my first projects as a Garden Girl for 2Peas.



Growing in the Garden

Being a Garden Girl brings lots of amazing opportunities, but one of my favorites was the challenge of keeping up with the other designers. Working on a team that includes designers like Ali Edwards, Jennifer McGuire, Jamie Waters, Shimelle Laine, and Liz Kartchner constantly keeps you on your toes and keeps you innovative.

As part of our benefits as a team member, we had access to a private message board in which we could ask questions of these industry giants. Every single Garden Girl that I have served with has been kind, open to answering questions, helpful, and sweet. What an opportunity to learn and grow, and I'm so thankful for all their help, love, and support over the years! Some teams may not be as close-knit as this team was for me; but I came to love each of the girls that I had the opportunity to serve with.



Saying Good-bye

Having been a part of the industry for 17+ years, it was impossible not to note the changes at 2Peas as well over the past year or so. Surviving in this changing economy and industry is difficult, but I wanted so much for the place I loved to thrive and grow. There are many things that go on behind the scenes that make being successful in this industry challenging, and obviously I was not privy to all the in's and out's of the business of running 2Peas. I can't imagine the long hours, the difficulties, the frustrations and more. And while as a Garden Girl you do everything you can to support and build up the community you love, there is only so much you can do. (And hey, I did my best to shop a LOT; but there's only so much my checkbook can handle.)

I wish I had an answer for why Two Peas is not continuing to operate, but I don't. If I had a magic wand, I would wave it madly to make my happy place successful again.

I wish Kristina and Jeff all the best. How do you thank two people who gave you your dream job? How do you appropriately appreciate something that has made you happy for the past 12 years? There just aren't enough words to tell them how incredible I find them, how sad I am for them, and how much I LOVE them for taking a chance on me.

I want to also thank Mel and Jamie who served as our Design Team Leads during my years of service and who kept me in line and helped me grow as a designer. They are incredible women who I wish only happiness and success.

I can't tell you how much I'm going to miss my Garden Girl buddies! Our one goal has always been to meet each other in person, and sadly that never happened. One day, right girls?!

What next?

Being right in the middle of a move and living in a temporary rental means that this break strangely comes at a good time for me. It will give me time to "mourn" the loss of an opportunity, but also to regroup and rethink what to do next.

My Workshops

Right now, I will work with Kristina to try and get the rights to my online workshops. I know several of you are worried about having access to those items. I have saved the videos, PDFs and class project images on my personal computer so once I'm given the rights, it will be a matter of choosing where to host them. I admit that it will be tricky knowing who had original access to the class, as I never had access to that information. But I promise that I'll do my best to figure it out!

In the meantime, class access should continue through July 10th. Please try to watch all videos and download and print the PDFs before then.

Want to take a class with me in the future? If you're interested in having me come and teach at your event or local scrapbook store, you can use the contact button in my profile to email me. Also, I've been in the process of developing a brand new course that was going to be hosted at 2Peas. I'm in negotiations with some other online teaching venues to host it. I will let you know when and where it's available once that decision has been made.

My Gallery

Now that the 2Peas gallery has been shut down, I'm honestly not sure where I'll be hosting my work. Keep watching my blog here and my Facebook page for updates as I weed through all of these decisions.

My Videos

I have also saved all of my 2014 "Make It Meaningful" and most of my 2013 videos to my personal computer and once given the go ahead will upload them to my personal Youtube channel. Unfortunately most videos beyond that date are now deleted and long gone from my computer due to size constraints on my hard drive. While I'm terribly sad about that, I look at it as an opportunity to make new ones just for you!

I'll be taking a short break with my "Make It Meaningful" weekly videos; although, I do have one more to share with you tomorrow that I will definitely be uploading to my personal channel. If I get the rights to continue the series, I will.

Once my living conditions are more permanent, I'll also be offering additional videos through my own channel.

A Thanks to YOU!

Without you and your support, I would not have had the opportunities I've had. I cannot stress enough how important it is that we get out and support one another. Be sure to follow all my fellow Garden Girls on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, etc. They are an AMAZING bunch of gals who would be a fabulous addition to any design team, teaching opportunity, and more.

If you have a place that you love like Two Peas, be sure to support it! Shop there, get involved in the message boards, upload your work. It's you and I that make places like that successful. Thank YOU for giving me the opportunity to share my work through Two Peas. You are the BEST group of friends and supporters!

43 comments:

  1. Love you Jen!! Keep making stuff!! xoxo

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  2. I have loved following you girls-and I felt like such a part of your lives (scrapbooks are such a personal thing!). I have been a member of 2Peas for almost the same time period as you (I saw that same article and had to check it out). I did a similar thank you post on my blog, but wanted to thank you as well for all of the wonderful inspiration you have shared with us! Your projects have always been an inspiration to me, and I love your first garden girl project still!

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  3. This is so, SO sad! I'm just shocked... would've never thought that TwoPeas would go... Jen, you know how much we love you and appreciate your work and videos! Don't do anywhere! You blog is always the first one I check every morning!

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  4. I will follow you though your facebook page like I used to do. I wish you the best! Thanks for what you brought to scrapbooking. :)

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  5. I love your work and I will be sure to add your blog to my list! Thanks for sharing this post with us! Hugs

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  6. Thanks Jen love your style really enjoyed tool school and look forward to seeing you again online when you are in a permanent home

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  7. It's kind of strange that there will be no 2ps. I did some shopping there (not too much, overseas shipping is pricey), but mostly it was a place to see lots of beautiful projects, to chat, to meet new people. I learned about you and many other designers I follow now at 2Ps. It's sad to see them go, but we still have the Internet.

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  8. Very sad indeed! I'm just getting over the shock and trying to figure out some things now. :)
    I look forward to seeing what you do, and wish you all the best!

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  9. I heard the news yesterday about Two Peas closing it's doors on Kristina Werner's blog. Very sad indeed. I wish everyone of the team members continued success and I'm sure whatever you choose to do in the future will be wonderful!

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  10. What a beautiful message. I will miss Two Peas very much, and for many reasons; mostly about the people. You've brought so much inspiration to so many. May your next adventures be as wonderful.

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  11. Jen, love your videos with 2Peas! Hope everything will work out for new adventures.

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  12. I was absolutely shocked by the news about 2Peas yesterday. Most definitely the end of an era. I am so glad you will continue independently, I love your videos. Good luck with your move & we will "see" you soon.

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  13. Camanddanismom5:13 PM

    Thank you so much Jen for posting your remembrances, thoughts and plans for the future! I will miss just about everything about two peas but what makes me the saddest is the fracturing of the community. Best of luck with your move!

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  14. I look forward to seeing how you move forward! I never got involved on 2Peas but I love your videos for them and hope you find a way to continue making them! I count on you for inspiration!! ;)

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  15. Hi Jen, I was as shocked as everybody else. I felt like an orphan even though I am just 1(ONE) year scrapbooking my life. 2Peas meant a lot, and as much as I wish too I could not purchase as often as I want to. I live in Brazil and customs make it prohibitive with its fees on purchases over 50 dollars. But I am happy YOU are staying, and that I can continue counting on you for ideas, tips and tricks. Thanks for your warming message. I know it was meant to Kristine and the 2Peas time, but I felt embraced too.

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  16. I was surprised, but in a way not. So many changes. I just hoped they would be able to pull through. Kristina and Jeff had such a wonderful thing there. The message board was a great place to hang out. The inspiration from the Garden Girls was amazing!! This is a tough economy still. I don't know what is going on with our scrappy industry, but I am glad I have my "stash" of goodies, partly thanks to some of you Garden Girls and your mystery boxes. One from you, one from Nancy and one from Lynn awhile back; along with orders from 2peas. ;) I think I have been in mourning since February when Archiver's closed. Living 10 miles from the MN border, I had access to quite a few of their stores being Corporate was in the Twin Cities.

    I will most definitely keep watching yours and the other GG's blogs for inspiration. In the meantime, enjoy your break. I hope your move goes smoothly and you are in your new home soon!!!

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  17. My heart is with all the Garden Girls. You are my inspiration and mentors! I will continue to follow (and follow in new ways as you suggested) to support and enjoy your creations and insights! Thanks for all the ways you share! Take care and I'll be waiting whenever you have more to share!

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  18. I'll cry because I love this muitom sitem love each artistasm and I do not know how my work will follow this without you .... I have a decor shop here in Brazil, in São Paulo, and we are also going through a crisis, and Maybe we have to close our doors, and this is a dream desfeitom and this brings us sorrows, Jean, please do not abandon us. Kisses

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  19. My dear, please keep me in touch, always
    neusinhamf@gmail.com

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  20. Thank you Jen for all that you have shared through 2peas. You are an amazing teacher! I look forward to continuing to learn from you and support your future professional endeavors. Warm hugs during this transition.

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  21. Jen your heartfelt words are so appropriate. I only follow 3 blogs and 2 youtube channels...you are one of those. I look forward to seeing your continued work that is always fabulous. I had the pleasure of taking your class at a CKU and you opened my eyes to using my punches in so many ways. Your TOOL SCHOOL workshop is the best. You are an amazing instructor! Keep Making Stuff!!!

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  22. Donna Q4:35 PM

    Jen...well, what a bummer! This is life...things are always changing. When I first started scrapping Two Peas was the first place I went...I loved the name!!! I watched all your videos...I wondered what does this lady look like with the beautiful nails and hands!! Lots of changes for you too...I hope you can enjoy the ride!! Take care and I'll be finding you wherever that may be. I hope to take many more of your classes.

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  23. So beautifully written Jen, I can only imagine the shock and despair, but then again the gratefulness that you have been through with Two Peas..loads of memories to cheerish and friendships that will last a life time...enjoy the moment of your new house and your Summer to deal with all that, I am a bad lurker but I am always around and love and adore your work, I know you will continue to create and inspire us all, much love to you xx

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  24. JLBOhio8:50 PM

    This was so well written and gracious. I was on vacation this week so I am just hearing the news and I headed right here to see what you are doing next. I really have loved Two Peas and I wish the owners, all the GG's and all the other Peas the best!! I really loved everything to do with that site!

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  25. Very eloquent Jen. Your style has always spoken to me and I watched all of your videos.

    Just a thought - it is possible to go into your orders history and do a screenshot of the paid up workshop. Perhaps you could recommend this to people as a way of proving paid class membership?

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  26. I have loved your new series, Make it Meaningful, and I do hope that you will be able to continue it at some time in the future. I know many of us have our favorite "Garden Girls" that we have followed for a long time, and you are definitely one of mine! :)

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  27. I'm so sad of the closing of 2Peas and not having one stop to view all your inspiring work and that of the other garden girls. I'm sure you've heard by now, but Scrapbook.com has an awesome tool to upload your 2Peas gallery in tact.

    In another post you asked about other places to shop online now. I alternate between Simon Says Stamp, Scrapbook.com and at A Cherry on Top from time to time (I'm on their mailing list and every once in awhile I get an awesome offer on shipping with a small discount on top). Scrapbook Generation's store is getting pretty cool with Markdown Mondays and they let you hold and group your orders with these sales to qualify for free shipping. :)

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