Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Quiet Book for a Noisy Child

Since the beginning of time I have run all my errands and made all my appointments with my 4 pinks and a blue. Okay, so that was a slight exaggeration. It hasn't been since the beginning of time but it feels like I've been doing it that long sometimes. :)

People often ask how in the world I can do all those things with all these kids in tow, but those of us with big families know that it's not much different than doing things with 2 or 3 kids. You get use to what you have to handle and you find ways to make things a little easier in the process.

Take today's post for instance. Our church is beginning a Ladies Prayer Meeting on Thursdays that I really want to be a part of. It will be no problem for the 18 month old because, Lord willing, she will be taking a nap at that time. :) But the 4 year old will be a participant of the meeting...and we all know 4 year olds don't we? They cannot be trusted to be quiet for long periods of time. At least mine can't. But I love her!!!!

I had pinned some Quiet Book ideas to one of my Pinterest boards a while back and quickly thought of them when I found out about the meetings. I made it my goal this week to get a couple pages done so that the 4 year old will have something to "quietly" occupy herself while we pray.

My favorite idea is the Potato Head quiet pages. Isn't she adorable? Jocelyn of Sunshine, Lollypops and Rainbows was amazingly kind enough to offer the pattern for free!!! Go there to get it!!

Today I will share with you how I made these for our littlest Pinks.

1. Print off pattern here.
2. Decide which colors of felt you will need to buy. (I would suggest that you even write on the pattern pieces which colors of felt you want for what so you don't forget anything.
3. Decide which color/colors you want to use for the actual pages. I used a whole sheet of felt from Wally World for each page.
4. Decide how you are going to bind your pages. I simply hole punched mine since I know that the kids will be sharing the book and I think it defeats the purpose of a Quiet Book if the children are fighting over it. :) (I wasn't up to making two books either.) I placed mine in a binder for now. SEE NOTE TOWARDS END OF POST.
5. Buy your felt and also TWO erasable markers. You will want one to be white so that it will show up on the darker colors of felt.
6. Gather your other basic sewing supplies: thread, scissors, seam ripper and any little
embellishments if you would like; rick-rac, buttons, get the point.
7. Start. It took me between 3 and 4 hours to complete this project. I didn't do it in one sitting though I did start and finish the same day. Yes, I was up excuse for the terrible lighting in the pictures you are about to see.

 I cut out all the patterns and then traced them onto the felt with a water soluble marker. I then cut each shape, except for the body, earrings, eye centers, flower center and the bucket "envelope" out in a double layer so that the pieces would be sturdier.
 I decided to machine sew mine but you could hand sew it as well. As a tip, if you want to embellish any of the pieces, like the lips, you have two options: 
  • You can sew both layers together and embellish through both which will result in the stitches being seen on both sides.
  • Or you can embellish the top layer first and then sew the top layer to the bottom layer giving you a nice clean looking back side. This is more time consuming but the perfectionists out there may be more satisfied with this option.
I simply sewed mine through both layers cause I didn't think about it before I started. Not sure I'd have opted for option two anyway though. Tells a lot about me huh?! :)

 I also opted to sew with my twin needle. Not any scientific reason why, just wanted too. Well, it was already in my machine from a previous project and I was too lazy to change it. I like how it all turned out though. Follow your machine's instructions for sewing with a twin needle.
 How that hat looks after sewing, love that contrasting cream thread!
 Carefully cut out your pieces being careful to leave enough felt on the outer edges of the stitches. And DON'T cut through your stitches!! That would just be sad.
 Repeat for each piece adding as many or as few details as you would like. Love how it's coming together!!!

Ugh, sorry about the shadow! It was late remember. This is the bucket envelope. To make sure it was laying straight I used a ruler to measure 1.5 inches from the bottom of my poorly cut felt page. :/ Pin and sew in place. 

Do the same for the bodies but make sure you leave enough room for the hat and shoes! I also only sewed the arms down under the body. They hang free so that the girls can slip things on and off of them. They do hang off the page a bit but it's not an issue for me since the book isn't bound. 

NOTE: If you were going to sew your pages together however you may want to purchase some yards of felt off the bolt so that your pages are big enough.
Give them to your little one and let them have fun!! I do have to say the the bigger 3 had lots of fun with these spuds before leaving for school this morning! Who said they were just for the younger kids huh?

Sigh. I just love when a project turns out!! I want to cut out more pieces but this is what is ready for tomorrow's meeting. Pray that it works and she plays quietly cause right now she is playing with it...and singing...loudly. Oh boy.

Linkin' it up:

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