Sunday, July 24, 2011

Quiet books for Sophie & Maggie..

Years and years and YEARS ago, I made a quiet book for my kids to use at church.  I don't have a clue what happened to it, but it was never anything to brag about.  My skills as a seamstress were sadly lacking back then, and it was made in Germany where materials were hard to find.  Making quiet books for the grandchildren has long been on my "to do" list, and now that Leslie's family goes to church with us, I get a weekly reminder to make new quiet books.
After working on them off and on for the past week, I am pleased to say they are finished.  Unlike my first attempt, these are worth bragging about.  I had started by purchasing a quiet book patten from Clothilde.  It was a pathetic excuse for a pattern.  So, I used some of their suggestions for the usual flower & ice cream pages.  Everything else, I made up as I went along.  Most of the materials I had on hand; muslin, felt squares, fabric markers, interfacing, and thread.  I just had to make a trip to Michael's to pick up embellishments. All in all, the project was very enjoyable.

This is Sophie's book.  I love this fabric! It was used in a baby quilt and very little was left over.  I found it quite by accident when I was searching for something to use for a cover.  In hind sight, I should have had my mother use her machine to embroider the girls names on the front of each book.  Maybe I can have her put them on plain white, finish the edges, and hand sew those on.  Hmmm, something to think about.
 The cover is held closed by a long strap that doubles as a handle.  It closes with a simple snap.  I was sad to find that the rubber gaskets on my hand held, snap attacher thingy are deteriorating!  But, it still worked.

The first page is a series of pockets.  Each pocket holds a craft stick flower with a picture of someone in the family on both sides.  This was Sophie's favorite page so I am glad I put it in first.

 The second page has little flowers with Velcro tabs on the backs so they can be removed.  The flowers were made by putting pre-cut felt flower stickers onto circles of coordinating felt.  The third page has finger puppets from IKEA in little pockets of felt.  The colorful fabric in the background was used to make Maggie's baby quilt.

The next page was simple enough; building an ice cream cone using felt with Velcro attached to the backs of each flavor.  They can be stored in the pocket.  The fifth page has a pocket of fabric to hold plastic letters.  The letters can be used to build words on the line above the pocket.

 This sixth page was the actually the first page I made, and by the time I finished the book, I wished I had done it differently.  The leaf lifts at the top to reveal lady bugs.  After it was constructed, I wished I had made the lady bugs removable.  The seventh page has removable butterflies that can be stored in the fabric pocket.  I made extras, which will stay in the pocket.

 The eighth page has a little purse that has a flap that lifts.  Inside, I intended to put some play make up, etc.  However, I only managed to find a little plastic brush in the toy box.  Leslie can put more things inside if she wants.

The next one is Maggie's book.  Her book started out in my mind as a princess book.  I had bought a yard of Disney fabric and cut the pictures of each princess, backed it with plain fabric and put thin quilt batting between the pieces.  I then finished the edges with a zig zag stitch.  I wanted to use the extra fabric for the cover, but by the time I got to that point, there wasn't enough fabric to use.  Luckily, I found this playful fabric that has most of the coordinating colors in it.

 Putting the covers on was a little tricky.  The pages are each backed with fusible interfacing, so they ended up fairly thick.  When I assembled the book, I stitched 2 pages together at a time, stitched those into a book of 4 pages, then added a 1 inch strip of fabric on the front and back of the page bundle.  Those are the actual pieces of fabric that are sewn into the cover.  It ended up much more easy to turn the pages, none of the actual picture was sacrificed in the seam, and the decorative stitch used to finish the edges wasn't altered because of the bulk.

 For the first page, I found the cutest glitter felt at Michael's.  The Royal Family is part of a set of finger puppets from IKEA.  The pocket is deep, so more puppets can fit; but, for the picture I only used 4.

 For the second page, I once again used the precut felt flowers and attached them with the Velcro dots.  The third page used foam pieces I found in the scrap book clearance section.  They also can be manipulated and moved from place to place.  I probably should have made the hill into a pocket for storage.

 The crown on the fourth page is also made using glitter felt.  The flowers are made of foam.  I left them attached so that Maggie could work on one to one correspondence when counting.  On the fifth page, the little house used the same glitter felt and opens at the top.  Inside, there is a cute little wooden unicorn that I found in the pre-painted section of the wooden craft isle.

 For the sixth page, I used a zipper and some light pink fabric to make a pocket.  Inside the pocket are the  quilted fabric princesses I mentioned earlier.  The seventh page has a pocket that holds tablet of paper and a flower pen so Maggie can write or draw.  At first I wanted to put one of those magic slate things inside, but wanted to finish this yesterday so I used what I had at home.

 The last page is also a cute little purse that opens.  Inside this are some more of the wooden cut outs I found at Michael's.  There is a crown, a castle, and a magic mirror.  When Maggie looked inside the mirror, she said, "I can't see anything!"  Maybe I should have put in a real on instead of a wooden one.

And here are their reactions.  Ron suggested I give them to the girls on Saturday rather than wait until Sunday at church.  He figured their squeals and chatter would defeat the purpose of a "quiet" book!

Maggie and the Royal Family puppets; Sophie and the flower pictures.

Sophie loved having a picture of everyone in the family.  I had to use the fronts and backs, and use a couple of group pics to get everyone on a flower.

I think she is happy. That smile is priceless.

This is the picture of Maggie's face when she took the quilted princesses out of the pocket.

Sophie just kept going back to the flower page.  She loves her Uncle Ryan!

Now, what should I start on next?  I only have a couple of weeks of school left.  Hopefully, this week I can get the dressmaker dummy finished.  I'm not sure I will post pictures of that.  It might end up being a disaster!


Anonymous said...

Those are amazing!

The monkey bunch said...

Awesome! I always wanted to make one of those, but I ended up just making a file folder version. Now my kids are all getting too old. They look great!

randivon said...

I know what you can start on next... quiet books for my kids. :-) But for reals, those are quite impressive. You have lucky grandkids.