Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Quiet /Busy book For Big Boy

Finally I can share with you my quiet book or busy book I made for my big boy.  I made one for his little sister and finished it just in time for us going to Florida and after realising I had spent so much time and effort on his little sister's book Finlay thought he would like one for himself (he can't see green cheese!)  I did include some superhero figures in Eliza's which I knew he would love so I transferred these to his and got to work on ideas for an older boy's book.  He will be 9 this year so he is beyond learning to do buttons and laces etc  - he is beyond the whole idea of the book actually but I felt bad that he wanted something like Eliza's and I loved making hers and seeing her use hers so I didn't mind making another one.

The front cover I decided to go with superheroes.  Finlay is obsessed with heroes - you may remember his Superman obsession - there is something wrong when Finlay is not in some hero dress up or another and even if he doesn't have the outfit he can be found in a vest that is too small with a headband of his sister's round his neck and a coat hanger hanging down his back = Hawkeye!! Resourceful :)   So incase you don't know these badges are Captain America, Superman, Spiderman, Batman and Green Lantern

As usual I spent LOTS of time on pinterest looking for ideas for big boy quiet books but at the time I looked there weren't many - I looked again recently though and there were lots more!  I was nearly finished though so I stuck to my original plans.  

Finlay like a lot of 8 year olds loves video games of all kinds.  Since I had the felt heroes from Eliza's book I went from there.  The first page of the quiet book is "Choose Your Character" like when playing the wii... 

A little hero city scene
 I made a mini book for the characters to stay in
Each attached with a little bit of velcro so they can be removed to fit on the little Finlay 
 Mario and Captain America

                                             Batman and Iron Man

And a little zipped pocket on the inside front cover for hero accessories like masks, capes, hats and moustaches :)
I hand sewed and glued the heroes using felt - Spiderman was the most intricate with lots of sewing but he is also my favourite :) 

Next page I went with was "Choose Your Country" - again when playing video games you are often asked for your country or language so I thought Finlay could learn the European country flags - or even just their names for a start :) 

Lift the flags and you find out the name of the country - pretty dodgy handsewn country names but he can read them so they will do :) I just used felt and glue for the little flags and sewed across the top of each flag onto the page so they could be lifted up to see the name of the country.

The next page is similar - "Choose Your Continent"

Under each lift the flap is the Continent name.  I plan to add the names of the seas on here as well - possibly loose so he can place them where he thinks they should go - and also some animals/mountains etc of note for each continent.  I saw this felt map but I had the idea before searching for this - I didn't see it used in another quiet book - I'm sure someone somewhere has done this but I've not seen it. 

My next thought for the "video game" book was are you right handed or left handed but couldn't think of anything suitable that would teach Finlay anything for this so I came up with the skeleton page 

Each name is attached with velcro so he can take them off and start again labelling the skeleton - I did sew on the little pocket but it is far too small for all the labels so only a few could stay in there - there is always the zipped pocket at the front of the book though.  Again I looked for a felt skeleton to copy online and found this one which I really liked but I knew I wanted to make a skeleton before searching - I didn't copy this from another quiet book.

Next I gave up on the video game lay out because I had no more ideas :) 
I put on a multiplication table because Finlay is learning all these just now.   

I called this "Multiplication" because this is one of the songs Finlay and Grandad danced to all the time when he was a little boy =) (by Bobby Darin)

Next page I did see a pin for (and here)

X and Os.  These have little magnets to keep them on both in the little X and Os and on the page - but they are not good :( They fall off when you lift the book up - they are good for playing the game but not for transporting - so these also stay in the front zip :) 

I also looked up felt fractions and came up with these

I was fed up of sewing writing by this stage so I used a paint that is actually for candles but I really wanted this finished so I just tried it out!  I then sabotaged it by leaning in it without meaning to oops - typical me really.

These are all attached by popper buttons so they can be removed and put together.

And that's it!  I could have done more I had more ideas but I spent so long on it - these things do take months!  Even though I worked on this at least an hour or two most nights.  

Like everything I do I just like to get on with it not spend time drawing it first and measuring it out so I just sit with my computer beside me and cut out shapes free style - the continents I just had a map on my computer in front of me (not the felt map I pinned - a real map) and cut the shape as best I could.  Not geographically correct I know and I apologise if I have missed some important nook or cranny out but I was going for the idea of the continent Finlay won't know if it is exactly right or not:) 

Same with the bones and the flags etc I just cut and stick I don't measure.  I don't have a printer so I can't even print templates out - I really need to invest in one and now I have bought myself some freezer paper I might just cut out some templates next time :) 

Finlay is really happy with his book and I am happy with it too - the pages this time are all felt and I didn't use my sewing machine once!  - I have a drama everytime I try to use it!  Combination of dodgy machine dodgy user I think.  I will practice - just not on a quiet book - they are time consuming at the best of times!

So what do you think of this "educational" quiet book? :)  

<<<<<<<<<<<<<More superhero felt creations >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


  1. what an incredible book! i love the mix of educational and fun pages. you must have spend hours getting it right. the handstitched numbers look amazing!!! i have so little patience with hand stitching, mine always looks like a 2 year olds writing!

    1. Haha Rhiannon I think that about all the writing in this book - it is dodgy!! But so much better than my attempts at machine sewing :) I need to practice! Thank you it did take me a LONG time!! So pleased it is finished :) x

  2. Hi, It is very nice to see that quiet book can also be made for older child, and I am sure it will be usefull. Great job, I especially like the flag and continent pages

    1. Thanks Chris I am really pleased with those pages too - the little flags are so cute and I loved making them!

  3. Love this book! It's taking me so long to make a quiet book for a little one I feel that I should get a head start and make one for an older child instead!
    Question: How durable is the paint? I like that idea, since I'm not fond of embroidery, but don't want it to peel off.

    1. Hi Jeanne thanks for your message I know they are so time consuming I had grand plans to make more but that was over a year ago and I still can't face the time needed to complete a book. The paint is very durable this book is played with tons just now by both my older boy and younger girl (devastatingly Finlay left a biro that burst beside the multiplication page which has soaked into all my hand sewn numbers I could still cry looking at it!! Especially as that's the page he needs most for his school work right now!)But the paint is still on and has not chipped or peeled off at all with massive amounts of pulling on and off of the buttons by my 3 year old. Would definitely use that again to save time. Good luck with your book let me know when you finish would love to see pictures! Xx

  4. What an amazing book! I love super hero theme and the educational benefits - the map, the flags, the math! Great job!

    1. Thanks so much! I loved this book so much. Such a labour of love. Considering making one for my baby boy but just never have the time! Are you making one?

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