Quiet book finished

Nolan’s FINISHED Quiet Book!

After what felt like years (but in reality was probably a couple of weeks) of nap-time work, here it is!  Our fake nephew’s Christmas present:  a quiet book.

Fork lift page.  The “packages” can attach onto the fork lift and it can move up and down.  The wheels spin.  And Nolan’s dad works at Lowes so I made him the driver.


Pocket page with vehicles parked inside.


Road page with a stop light (the lights detach) and traffic signs.

Barn page.  The barn doors open to reveal farm finger puppets.  The windmill can come out of the pocket.  There’s a puddle and some mud for the puppets to “play” in.


A  jellyfish counting page.  Beads go from 1 to 10.

Dog page.  The leash comes off of the page and can attach to the collar.  There’s a piece of velcro on the dog’s tongue where the bone, ball or toy can go.


Dump truck page.  The dumpster swivels back and forth.  There’s a piece of dirt that can come in and out of the dumpster.  The wheels can come on and off.

And finally the peek-a-boo house page.  The windows, door and chimney open to reveal pictures of Nolan’s family.

At 15 months Nolan is probably too small to truly appreciate the book, but Amanda sure loved it.  And I know that it’s going to get a ton of use in the future.  Plus it’s the gift that keeps on giving:  Nolan will be getting quiet book pages for Christmas and birthdays from Aunt Nikki for at least the next 3 years!

Update:  Here are 8 new quiet book pages that I’ve given to Nolan since he got his original book a year and a half ago.

Matching balloonsquiet-book-match-the-colors-balloon-page-finished-2

Doctor’s kitquiet-book-doctors-kit-page-6

Wheels on the busquiet-book-wheels-on-the-bus-page-2

Ladybug quiet-book-ladybug-page-9

Mailboxmailbox-quiet-book-page-2 mailbox-supplies-quiet-book-page-1

Brush your hair and teethquiet-book-toothbrush-page-5and Gumball machine.gumball-color-matching-quiet-book-page-6

Quiet Book Fork Lift Page

Brilliance at work!

I knew that I was going to have a Fork Lift page to go with the dump truck.  Imagine Our Life has a kick-ass version of this as well, so I used her templates again.  If you haven’t checked out her website yet you really have to!  Her quiet book pages are insane!!!  Most of them look complex and impossible, but they’re actually pretty easy.  Although that’s only because she does the hard part of figuring out how on earth to make it work and then explains it in a clear, easy manner to the rest of us!  Of course my finished products never look nearly as nice as hers do, haha.

So while doing my Dump Truck page I had the best idea ever.  Now I’m not one to brag about ideas (mainly because I never have any good ones, hahaha), but I was pretty proud of myself for this one.  So the fork lift Imagine Our Life made doesn’t have a driver in it.  At first I figured that I would stick a silhouette in there like the dump truck.  And then THE IDEA was born.  Nolan’s dad, Eric, is an Assistant Manager at Lowes.  I could make a mini-Eric!  I found a close up of Eric’s face (I love the Faces feature in iPhoto.  It makes it so much faster to find the perfect photo of the person you need!).  Then I spent entirely too long looking for a picture of a random person in a Lowes uniform.  I wanted to make it so Eric was sitting in the seat, but it was impossible to find a photo of a Lowes employee in that position.  So finally I repeated my mantra to myself (“This quiet book is for a 1 year old…this quiet book is for a 1 year old…”) and made do with cutting it off from the chest up.  I glued Eric’s head on the body, and voila!  In the picture I chose Eric is wearing a white baseball cap, which ended up looking somewhat like he’s wearing a hardhat.  Lucky stroke of genius.

Once I had my picture finished I gathered my materials and cut out the pieces.  Once again I saved Imagine Our Life’s templates to my computer, opened them in my Silhouette program, scaled them to the size I wanted, printed them off, pinned them onto the felt and hand cut everything out.

I started with the driver.  I did that part the same way as the dump truck–placed the blue background on the forklift, put the drivers seat and steering wheel on top, positioned Eric in the least awkward way I could, then laid the vinyl over top.  I sewed all of that down, once again switching out the blue thread for black.  Then I switched it out again for yellow and sewed the body of the forklift down.


I read and reread Imagine Our Life’s instructions on how to make the platform go up and down about 16 times and never understood exactly what to do.  So I made it up.  I cut a rectangle out of vinyl that was about the same height and width as the forklift.  I sewed the vinyl onto the forklifter piece (the yellow L).  I knew I was going to use velcro instead of snaps for the boxes, so I sewed 3 pieces of yellow velcro onto the vinyl.  Then I cut off two pieces of yellow ribbon; one for the top of the vinyl and one for the bottom.  I sewed them on so they made a loop for Nolan’s fingers to pull.  Next, I took the long black rectangle and placed it against the inner edge of the forklift.  I cut out another vinyl rectangle, this one the same height as the other, but the width only went from the inner edge of the forklift to a bit past the outer edge of the black rectangle.  If you look really closely at the image below you can see the second piece of vinyl to get a better idea what I’m trying to say.  With the black rectangle wedged between the two pieces of vinyl, I used some clear thread that I had on hand from a project a long time ago to sew a line down right next to the black strip.  I switched back to yellow and sewed along the very edge of the yellow side, forming a tunnel to keep the lifter from moving around all over the place.  You can see both lines if you look really closer at these pictures of the fork lift:



Then I sewed the top and then the bottom of the black rectangle down onto my page, leaving the middle alone.  I tested it out and it could go up and down, no problem at all!  Whew!  It required a lot more thought on my part than it probably should have, but I’m just happy that I was able to think it through without having to redo it a billion times.  That’s my usual MO.

I sewed 3 strips of velcro on the bottom for the packages to go when they’re not on the fork lift.  I didn’t do anything fancy when I cut out the packages–just a square, a rectangle and a triangle out of light brown felt.  I added the velcro to the back of the “boxes”.


Last but not least, the wheels!  Since I made it so the tires can come on and off of the dump truck, I opted to make these ones spin.  I didn’t want to mess around with buttons like Imagine Our Life, so I just used the same tactic here that I did to make the dumpster dump on the dump truck:  brads.  I found two huge grey ones and poked them through the felt and muslin.  Easy peasy!

After I had all of that done I was looking at the page and it was so plain!  Another brilliant idea–make it Lowes!  I typed “Lowes” into Google images so I could see exactly what the outside looked like, then free cut the pieces out.  I sewed the light brown felt down, sewed the red felt on top of that, and then the blue felt on top of the red.  I used some white puffy paint to write “LOWES”.  The page looked much better after I added the background.  Although I really wish that I had cut & sewed the pieces on a little straighter…you can see it’s a bit wonky.  But that’s okay, I don’t let that overshadow my brilliance 😉



This idea actually turned out to be even more perfect than I had realized.  After Amanda opened up the quiet book and saw this page she started laughing.  I guess there’s a funny story about Eric at work when he was driving a forklift one day that I hadn’t heard.  So this really did turn out to be the perfect page!  It’s probably my favorite out of all of the pages I’ve made so far.

Hear that sound?  It’s me tooting my own horn!

Quiet Book Dump Truck Page

Beep, Beep, Beep…Dump Truck Coming Through!

So obviously you can’t have a quiet book for boys without having some construction vehicles.  The Dump Truck page from Imagine Our Life is everywhere and super cute so I went with that one.  And it was surprisingly easy to make as well!  She has very clear instructions on her page for those who need specific directions.  Since I’ve done quite a few pages now I just used her page as a guideline.

First I collected my materials.  I found some fabric in my stash that would work perfectly for the ground–it’s a textured dark orange that feels really smooth.  I actually bought it to make a dog bed out of, but still haven’t gotten around to that yet.  No surprise there.  I used yellow felt for the truck, light blue felt for the window background and black felt for the driver, tires and bumper.  And a piece of vinyl to put over the window.  Then I got to work cutting it all out.  I took the template from Imagine Our Life and pasted it into my Silhouette program so I could adjust it to the size I needed.  Then I printed off the page, cut out the shapes, pinned them to the felt and hand cut them with scissors.  The shapes aren’t complicated and I didn’t want to waste the interfacing in order to use the Silhouette.  Plus it wastes a lot more felt with the machine.

I arranged my truck pieces on the background muslin page, then cut out a piece from the orange fabric as the ground.  I thought it would look neat if the truck was driving “downhill” so I laid the fabric diagonal.  I folded the raw edge underneath, ironed it down and then sewed the “hill” along the edges.  Since I already had the orange thread in my machine I also cut out two pieces of the same material to use as the “dirt”, sewed them together, turned them right side out, and stuffed it with some polyfil.  I also threw in a few jingle bells that I had laying around as well.  Why not?  I cut off a piece of yellow ribbon (probably about 8 inches), poked it into the open hole, folded the raw edges inside the “dirt” and sewed it all closed.  Voila.

Now the truck.  I started with the window.  I placed the blue felt on the truck cab, the driver onto the blue felt and then laid the vinyl overtop of it all.  I sewed all the way around the vinyl, stopping to switch my thread from blue to black.  I never bothered to sew the driver on his own. I figured the vinyl would keep him place just fine.

Next I arranged all of my pieces onto the page.

Time to sew!  I tried to do it in an order that would mean switching out my thread as few times as possible.  It only takes a minute to change it, but does everyone else find it to be a huge hassle too?!  There were times on my other quiet book pages where I didn’t bother to switch and I really regretted it later.  Especially with how fast it is!  Sorry, another digression.

I started with the bumper since I already had the black in.

Now, Imagine Our Life had used a snap to keep the dumpster from swinging around on the page, but I despise hand sewing so I decided to use velcro instead.  And I figured that since Nolan is only 1 he isn’t going to be able to work a snap for quite awhile anyway; velcro would be so much easier for him.  They’ll be plenty of pages in the future that I can use snaps on instead.  I cut a piece of yellow velcro and sewed half onto the muslin and half onto one of the dumpster pieces.  Then I sewed the two dumpster pieces together, leaving the top open for the “dirt”.  I also stitched the other end of the yellow ribbon onto the back of the dumpster.

Another change I made was to use a brad instead of a grommet to make the dumpster swing.  I didn’t have my totally awesome Crop-A-Dile tool yet and the only grommets I had on hand were gigantic.  And a lot of work.  So I figured I’d see if a brad would work instead.  Sure enough it poked right through both layers of felt and the muslin.  Score!


Next I sewed down the truck cab and wheel-cover-things.  Obviously that’s the technical name for them.  When I sewed the wheel-cover-things on I only did the tops and sides–I left the bottoms open so the wheels could tuck under if desired.  I did this because I wanted my wheels to detach, which is the final change I made from my inspiration page.

dump-truck-page-driver I changed my thread out for the last time (hooray!) and sewed the black velcro in the wheel wells and onto the back of the tires.  Then I hand sewed (yuck) a button onto each tire.  I was a bit worried about getting through the velcro, but didn’t have any issues at all.

Ta-da, the finished dump truck!