For Froo’s birthday, I decided that I would make her a quiet book. With an upcoming plane ride, I am only prepared to deal with disasters coming from Boo. Last week at Whole Foods, as I was reaching to grab something, Boo stood up from the front of the shopping cart and fell into the back of the shopping cart, right ontop of Froo. The seat belt was tightly fastened–I have no idea how he wormed out of it so quickly. I had both boogers crying their eyeballs out. I wanted to cry, too.
Anyhoo, I had a lot of fun making the quiet book! There are so many ideas from Pinterest, but I really wanted to make this one specific to Froo’s interests.
I started off with a plain black 2″ ring-binder, a non-standard 9″x6″ size that I found at Office Depot. It fits half of a felt sheet perfectly. (At 5 for $1, plus an additional 20% off at Michael’s–I bought 55 sheets! That would have been almost $30 in Canada at $0.49 each. Yikes!) I made a fabric cover based on this tutorial, but added an inside pocket and handles. The pocket is elasticized and expands at the bottom to fit felt letters. I made the felt letters by using Heat’n Bond Ultra Hold to fuse 2 pieces of felt together, then ran the felt through my die-cutting machine. I did this to make the felt letters thicker and also to indicate which side was up. I made extra vowels and commonly used consonants.
The front of the binder cover has a flannel patchwork piece to make the felt letters stick. I sew in a bit of corded elastic to wrap around the flower button on the front as a closure. The grey floral fabric is backed with a medium-weight fusible interfacing.
1st Page. This is a fun one. I created a curtain that opens up to reveal a stage. A girl and costumes are hidden in the pockets of the curtains that are held back with snaps. Backdrops are tucked away in the floorboards.
There are 4 different hair options, 3 dresses, a mermaid outfit and 2 scenes: the ocean and a castle. There are so many add-ons that I can think of to add to this page in the future. I started off using fabric glue, but it took a long time to dry and it didn’t adhere very well, so I ended up using a glue gun.
Pages 2 & 3. I like to call these pages “Girlie Monsters in the Closet.”
There are 5 monsters and 15 (+1 spare) googly eyeballs with eyelashes and pink eyeshadow. They are backed with the poky side of velcro.
Here is the page in action. Monsters are counted individually and eyeballs are placed on the monsters, the number of eyeballs corresponding to the number on the page. Counting happening in 2 different ways.
Page 4. This one is inspired by The Quiet Book Blog. I made my buttons a different colour to make it a matching exercise as well. The flowers are all tucked away in the flower vase. The vase was sewn with a decorative heart stitch using my sewing machine. I usually only use about 2-3 different stitches, so it was nice trying a different one.
Page 5. You’ve Got Mail! Froo loves sending and receiving mail. Sometimes she draws a picture for my hubs and me, folds it into an envelope, drops it into the mailbox and tells us we have mail. There is a lovely tutorial here.
Here are a couple of photos with detailed shots. I think I got the Chinese character horribly wrong and it might be upside down(?). My husband is Chinese-Canadian and I asked him to write the character for our last name. I love the Chinese tradition of gifting lucky red pockets of money–it somehow makes it special to receive money as a gift, no matter what the amount. I am Korean-Canadian and my parents gave us money as gifts too, but always in plain white envelopes. Lucky Froo got a red pocket with Hello Kitty on it for her birthday this year–thank you Mama & Yeye!
Page 6. This next page is for teaching Froo the colours of the rainbow in their proper order.
Page 7. Based on the Hans Christian Anderson fairytale, “The Princess and the Pea”. I read his (non-Disney adapted) collection a couple of years ago and felt that they were more like campfire ghost stories, rather than nursery stories. I explained the story to Froo and she didn’t get it. But she liked the stuffed pillow.
Page 8. This is the final page in Froo’s quiet book. It is a weaving page. All of the pages are sewn together and finished off with 3 small button holes to fit the 3-ring binder. It is completely stuffed!
Fewf! This is a long post. Lots of photos. Lots of fun. At first, Froo wasn’t sure about her new quiet book, it was the first thing she opened when she woke up on her birthday, but the next day, she said to me, “mommy, thank you for making me a book.” Then I had to help her get the mermaid’s bikini top on and I’m not sure how “quiet” this book is turning out to be.