Busy Book Update
I have spent a remarkable amount of time at home lately and I’ve gotten back into the swing of sewing more lately since there’s really not much else to do in my tiny apartment. I finished the last of my church busy book pages this morning and thought I’d take pictures before binding them into the book and it’s trickier to keep them flat than it already is. I got a lot of my great LDS-themed ideas from Mormon Chic’s article on making your gospel themed quiet book. If they’re my original idea though I’ll let you know. The most common difference in what I have done is to add a scripture reference so that older children can practice looking up scriptures and finding answers to questions which is a good literacy skill. If anyone is interested in the templates I used, let me know and I can email them to you since I had to make most of them up and that took a lot of the time of planning out the pages.
Here they are!
Page 1 Noah’s ark
I’ve made little animal matching cards by using the clipart on my computer and then laminated the cards and placed in the zippered pocket. The darker picture is easier to see the embroidery (what was I thinking?) but that was taken before I added a title and the lighter it’s easier to see the texture. I guess I can’t win.
I found these that you have to iron on before you’re finished don’t bleed like the other fabric markers at the craft store. Plus, you get more colors for your dollar since they are $5.79 here Crayola Fabric Markers and the other brands that I bough ranged from $1.50 each up to $3.99 each which is a pain if you like color.
I used their markers for the text and their fabric crayon’s for the color of the sky earlier. I wish I’d found the markers when I’d found the crayons just because they are a lot easier to keep the color even with.
Page 2 Time to Pray
Here is my “learning the clock” page I reinforced the hands with fusible backing to make them thicker. These words and numbers were done with the more expensive fabric markers but for some reason they were much more difficult to keep from bleeding and not be so light that it looked sloppy. I actually had to try a few different clock faces before the numbers didn’t bleed too much.
Page 3 How Much Tithing?
This one’s idea was taken from the Crafty Chic: Quiet Book as well, but I thought it would be better to show how minimal tithing is in comparison to all of the rest of what you have and what better way then using something visual! So I tore apart an envelope to figure out the pattern for the envelope and then sewed the rest of the coins onto the page and only have the “1” removable. I wish I had found some gray for the envelope since that would have seemed more like a tithing envelope.
Page 4 Braid Queen Esther’s Hair
This is my take-off of the original busy books’ I’ve looked at “braid the hair” page. I crazily embroidered her hair in with a huge needle which gives it somewhat of the appearance of cornrows or tiny little braids. I also went a little nuts and beaded jewelry for her (her dangling earring is flying in the picture). She is one of my original ideas and one of my most favorite pages.
Page 5 Tree of Life
This idea is just like the “apple tree” pages of other books and is also from the same article. The thing I did differently was to add the scripture reference and I decided that since the fruit represents the “love of God” that I would make them heart shaped.
I used my favorite markers for the text here since they are so much easier to control.
Page 6 I Love to See the Temple
This is from the gospel quiet book article. So you can go there for info on how to put it together. It’s one of the cuter pages and I love how the temple turned out. I used fabric paint to make the angel gold but I warn you, if you haven’t tried this stuff before practice for a while (it’s trickier on felt than other things because of the texture).
Page 7 My Family Can Be Together Forever
This is another one of my own ideas. I realized that fabric transfers like the ones from Avery are really quite easy to use once you’ve tried them a couple times. For some reason, the T-shirt ones seem to work better on broadcloth than other materials though they are also fine on felt (they can tend to roll or pull off more easily on felt though so be careful). I just attached cotton to fusible interfacing and then added the fabric transfer of our most resent family photo. Then I cut our photo like a puzzle and edged it with fray-check to keep the edges of the cotton together. I backed the puzzle pieces with small pieces of sticky backed Velcro (hooked side). The dark green for the frame is felt and the Velcro attaches pretty easily to it without being too tight. I figure that since this part was so easy, it won’t be so hard to change the picture as the family grows through the years and then I can put the various puzzles that have been used in scrapbooks.
Page 8 Search the Scriptures
This was another one of my own ideas when I was trying to think of a way to teach buckles. So I thought of the old-fashioned scriptures that used to have some kind of buckle on them. This is the middle page so I decided to have both pages relate to each other so if you open the book it relates to the next page.
Iron on transfers were used here so that the words would be clear and readable (hopefully for years to come).
Here is where pieces of the next page are stored so they don’t get lost.
Page 9 Put on the Armor of God
This was another of my ideas. I thought at first of doing a missionary but then I realized that just getting children and youth to realize that it can be a battle to keep their lives clean in order to be happy is the most important goal. So I thought of the Armor of God concept that one bishop in my youth used the example of and dressed up a youth in armor that he had made. So I thought, “why not dress up a paper doll?” I’ll tell you, finding a paper doll boy that’s not dumb looking is a pain. Here is the best I found for the armor and the boy. Nicely enough it’s actually for a sharing time idea so it’s pretty cute and concise unlike some of the other things I found about the “Armor of God”. It is made to be pretty tiny so I photo-shopped my life away for about three days to make it look nice enough and not so grainy at the proper size so here and then did pretty much the same steps as I did on the “Families Can Be Forever” page to make the pieces with an iron-on transfer. Man I love those transfers!
I sewed tiny pieces of the soft side of Velcro and then used the sticky Velcro on the back of the pieces for the armor. Since the example showed the labels I thought they would be a nice addition to the page just to remind children of the important values to keep strong from the world.
Here’s my little guy with his armor on. I hope my own little guy will think that he’s cool enough to emulate throughout the years.
Page 10 Lift Up Your Voice
This is also from the Mormon Chic article. I cut out my notes from felt and stuffed them with fluff to make them solid. I still used their cute idea of the yarn so that you can slide the notes from one side to the other. My little guy thinks it’s great that I know what the “melody” sounds like each time he changes the order of the notes. Too bad Jared won’t be able to entertain him with it in the way. I guess he will just have to learn how to sight-sing!
Page 11 Faith in Every Footstep
This boot was a huge pain to find an example for. I really didn’t like the examples in other busy books so I finally found a good perspective from a picture of Kirsten the American Girl off of Amazon. So I blew it up to giant proportions and then cut it out in decorators vinyl (which I still have quite a bit of). I did the eyelets with the help of my new toy/tool a crop-a-dial that is for eyelets from size 1/8” to 3/8” and snaps as well (which I actually haven’t tried). It was amazing how incredibly easy it was to use this. I got it from Joann's with one of their great half-off coupons so it was only about $15 and well worth it. I used a piece of leather I’ve had laying around for a while for the laces since it seemed more “authentic” looking. If anyone would like me to give them a shoe cut-out of vinyl with eyelets I’ll do it for a $1 + shipping. The sewing in was the most difficult part since my machine is crazy with the guider which makes stretchy material bunch on the top. So I’m glad I started at the top left corner so that by the time I got to the end where it started bunching it was where most boots bunch a little—right above the heel.
Page 12 Children All Over the World
This page was my own idea. I love the song “Children All Over the World” from the Primary songbook. I did an iron-on transfer of a clip-art picture of the earth and then stuffed it a little. I got the darling little finger puppets from my local Ten Thousand Villages. They were a little pricey but since the profits go directly to the artisans rather than them getting a huge cut, I always feel a little better about spending my money there. I went a little crazy with attaching these little guys and have a long ribbon sewn to the bottom of them and then a ribbon to tie around their waists when it’s time to put them away so they’re not flying everywhere.
Page 13 The Word of Wisdom
This one I got the idea from another busy book I’d seen before and then the Primary Partners CD I have had something similar. So, I used the healthy and unhealthy things from the Primary Partners and then did my own fridge (out of felt) and garbage can (out of some leftover costume material) and sewed Velcro on the front of the page and in the fridge to (hopefully) reduce losing pieces. I’m so glad I thought to look in my Primary Partners CD for this one since the first busy book I saw with this idea they where all hand-made out of felt and embroidered. That would have taken FOREVER! This way it was pretty easy.
Page 14 Choose the Right
This is pretty straight-forward. It’s the same basic idea as the one in the Mormon Chic article and I thought it would be nice to have something that takes a little more time to do (such as writing or drawing). It’s kind of corny but my little boy loves this page and that’s what matters.
Page 15 Write a Note
This is from some other busy books I’ve seen. I love the mailbox with the flag (probably because I’ve never actually had one). So it’s appealing to me. This was pretty easy once I made up the pattern and set the brad. I did have to reinforce the flag with fusible interfacing so it would be strong enough.
Page 16 Lets Be Together Forever
I took this directly from the Primary Partners CD-Rom that I already had and just did it on an iron-on transfer. They have some really great ideas. If you’ve never bought Primary Partners products before, I recommend leafing through their books at the store and then buy the CD-Rom since you can manipulate the sizes and some are colored and some are black & white (as long as you have a printer of course).