Jolly Crafts: Felt Book

Piera from Jolly Mom and Felicia from Go Graham Go recently started a Meme called Make Something Monday. I already see it catching on around the blogosphere! I am jealous of the crafts I have seen so far, but have no idea how to start doing one on my own. So I asked if they would do a how-to for me and other Mom Buzz readers. Lucky me, they agreed! You may have seen this Felt Book on Jolly Mom yesterday. Well, this is how Piera did it!

Felt Book Tutorial
My 1 year old son loves books and family pictures so I thought it would be fun for him to have both! This tutorial is for a felt book, which incorporates pictures. This is great for young children, but I think it is also a great project to do with an older child. First, let me say that this is not my original idea. Felt books have been around for a long time. You can find instructions for many types of felt baby books on the web, but I got the idea for this book from a great crafting book called, Crafty Mama: Makes 49 Fast, Fabulous, Foolproof (Baby & Toddler) Projects. OK, let's get started.

You Will Need:
Hot glue gun
Glue sticks
Cardboard (you can use empty cereal boxes, etc.)
Scissors (Fabric and All purpose)
3 standard sized felt sheets
Chalk or marker
Several 4 3/4" x 3 1/2" pieces of fabric or more felt
Needle and thread
Felt or fabric letters, shapes, pictures, etc (you can buy these precut or cut them yourself)
Buttons (optional)

Let's Get Started!
1. Cut your cardboard into six 4 1/4" x 3 3/4" rectangles.

2. Place one of your felt sheets on a flat surface and measure and mark the vertical and horizontal center. You will be creating four equal quadrants.

3. Place one of your cardboard rectangles in the upper right quadrant of the felt sheet and another in the lower right quadrant. Make sure they are they are centered and on your vertical line.

4. Squeeze a thin line of glue around three sides(upper, lower, and right-do not put any glue on the left side) of the top cardboard piece. Quickly fold along the vertical center so that the left side of your felt piece now meets the right side. Press firmly on the felt to secure the glue. Now, your cardboard pieces are sandwiched inside.

5. Now, cut the felt piece in half between the two cardboard pieces. This will create two book pages.

6. Now, repeat the previous steps to create four more book pages.

7. Neatly stack your felt book pages (in order) so that the cardboard free margin is facing left. Cut a 2" piece of ribbon and fold it in half. Place the ends of the ribbon between pages three and four. Squeeze a small dot of hot glue onto the ends of the ribbon and press felt firmly to secure glue.

8. Take your needle and thread and sew through all six pages (and ribbon) down the left side of the book. Sew about 1/4" in.

9. At this point, your book is ready to be decorated. The following illustration shows you how to make a pocket.

10. I just used needle and thread to attach the ribbon to the pockets and pictures. You could use glue as well.

Here are some example of how I decorated the pages of my book. I cut my felt letters and images freehand, but you could use stencils or buy precut as I mentioned earlier. I also used buttons to embellish the book. A word of caution though, make sure that young children are supervised if you use buttons or any small item to embellish since it can be a choking hazard if it comes off. Laminating the pictures is a really good idea for children that put everything in their mouths. I didn't do it with this book, but I will for the next one. Finally, the glue does hold everything very well and makes this a pretty quick project. However, using stitch witchery or actually sewing the pages would be even better. I think I will do that the next time.

I hope that you enjoyed the tutorial! I am not an "expert" crafter, but I really love doing it so I do it anyway. It is a way to relax and focus on something fun, which is why both Felicia from Go Graham Go and I (Jolly Mom) decided to start our Make Something Monday Meme! We would love for other crafters-beginners and pros alike-to join us on Mondays as we show off what we have created. It's a great way for each of us to inspire each other with new ideas! Hope to see you on Mondays!

Make Something Monday