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Birthday Week: The Quiet Book

June 4, 2010

UPDATE from 10/11: I started a second quiet book!

At last! I can share Eleanor’s Quiet Book with the world!

I began looking for a quiet book (that I could just purchase for her) around Christmas. I never found anything that was as sturdy as I wanted or had the types of pages I was looking for. I knew I wanted a zipper, buttons, snaps and some kind of velcro page. I’d basically given up. Then I came across the Piece and Quiet pattern from The Quilted Fish. While it didn’t necessarily match exactly what I had in mind for the pages, it definitely had the type of construction I was looking for! (I will not share with you the number of people that thought I’d lost my mind! You know who you are! )

I got the pattern in early April. Thank goodness our kids have early bedtimes! This became my pet project (read: I was obsessed) and I’d work on it each night for a while (read: stayed up very late!).

Enough talking. Let’s have a look at this book!

Some of the pages I did just like the pattern and some I made up or modified from things I’d seen online.

The pink Chuck Taylor is my own interpretation of the pattern’s “old woman who lives in a shoe” page (or Mi Casa es Shoe Casa) I found several images of Converse All-Stars online and made up a template from those. Then I added grommets and used printable fabric to create the logo.

The carrot page is exactly like the pattern. All of the carrots and the dirt pockets are hand embroidered. By far the most time consuming page. The house I made up on my own (with the idea coming from Jacquie!) The windows are actually flap pockets and have little fabric versions of our family that can be moved around to different windows or behind the front door.

These two are exactly like the pattern design. An awesome eye spy page and flowers that button on! The only exception is that on the Eye Spy page, I actually enclosed the magnet inside the pieces, rather than have raw edges of fabric showing. Hopefully this shows what I’m talking about. It shows the pieces right before I folded and sewed down the edges. Thank goodness for invisible thread!

The eye spy page was one that initially gave me fits. I don’t have many “novelty” fabrics and cringed at the thought of getting the ones you see at JoAnn. Luckily, Jacquie staged an intervention! With a little help from her and from my mom, I was able to come up with the 30 sets of matching squares to create a page that is not only fun, but also CUTE! Just look at all of that Heather Ross!!

Neither of these next pages are in the original pattern, but one is close. The balloons are a spin off from the clown page in the pattern. The mailbox is my own. The red flag goes up and down and there is velcro holding the mailbox closed. Every day when I get home from school with the kids, Eleanor helps me go to the mail box to “get the papers!” Now she has one of her own.

But what use is a mailbox without a little mail? Richie and I each wrote a short “letter” to Eleanor and I printed them on printable fabric (including her name and address with a little stamp image on the back!). Then I sandwiched them around a layer of double sided fusible Peltex and stitched down the edges. SOOOO much easier than it sounds. Promise.

He’s not lying about the dancing. You should see the dance parties they have together.

This set of pages is her current favorite! “I have to finish the puzzle. Let’s do it again,” she’ll say. The doll on the right is straight from the Moda Bake Shop. I saw that idea posted and loved it, and just decided to combine it with the quiet book. The suitcase is my own idea, and it’s packed with all of the clothes from the Bake Shop pattern (which is really well written, by the way!).

The suitcase has travel “stickers” that are fused and stitched down using more printable fabric. Eleanor loves using the zipper.

And, finally, the piggy bank page. Eleanor keeps telling me that her fake quarters are “very, very shiny.”

I had so much fun making this for her. Yes, it was a ton of work. Yes, I know I’ll have to do it all over again for Graham (I actually have two of his done- working assembly line style as I did Eleanor’s). For Graham’s I’ll have to cut out the flower page- I am planning a button down basketball, football and baseball instead. And I’m thinking planets instead of balloons on the snap page.

I can see why Amanda, who created the pattern, decided to make a pattern instead of continue to make and sell them. It’s definitely time consuming. But not at all impossible! The only major construction modification that I made was to eliminate the use of raw edges/blanket stitching. I just added a little more fabric around everything and folded it under to stitch it down.

Her pattern really is a great one and it’s easy to modify pages to fit your own kiddo. Even if you don’t think you’ll use the same page designs as hers, I recommend buying it for the basic construction alone. I found her at Market and thanked her for making the pattern. (As promised, Amanda, here it is!)

The reward of seeing Eleanor play with a gift that doesn’t take batteries (!!!) and will be passed down to her own kids is simply awesome. I can’t even describe it.

However, Eleanor gave us a little lesson on what’s really important. Toward the end of her cake-induced sugar high, Richie  and I were getting her ready for bed. I asked her what I thought was a simple question. Here’s what happened:

Me: “Eleanor, what was your favorite thing today at your party?” (Expected answer, ‘my bicycle’ or ‘my playhouse’, etc)

Eleanor: “Um, my favorite thing was giving hug and kiss and hug.”

Richie and I looked at each other. Of course, Eleanor. You’re right.

Today, Eleanor turns two! Happy birthday, Eleanor Rose!


NOTE: I receive requests about once a week from readers asking if they can buy one of these from me. I am so sorry, but I do not make things to sell. In addition, the hours in this project would make it a very expensive bit of labor to pay for. I would encourage you to purchase the Piece and Quiet Book pattern from The Quilted Fish (link included later in this post). 

124 Comments leave one →
  1. June 4, 2010 7:08 am

    Wow, thanks so much for sharing. This is a great gift.

    I do that with my kids every night “What was your favorite part.” I love to hear their simple answers – because they are ALWAYS simple. It really makes you recognize that life is all about the little things!


  2. June 4, 2010 7:26 am

    Amazing and so creative!

  3. June 4, 2010 7:37 am

    Wow, Shea, this is AMAZING. I can pretty much guarantee that I will never sew anything this cool in my entire life. You are AWESOME and have the patience of a saint. And happy birthday to Eleanor!

  4. June 4, 2010 7:46 am

    This is amazing! You did such a beautiful job, and it is so special. One word – heirloom.

  5. June 4, 2010 7:46 am

    OH. MY. GOSH. It’s even better than I had imagined when you posted about it on Monday. WOW! It’s just amazing! Now I want one!!!!

  6. June 4, 2010 7:51 am

    This is unbelievably gorgeous!

  7. June 4, 2010 8:11 am

    Super cute!

  8. Stephanie permalink
    June 4, 2010 8:33 am

    Wow, this is amazing! She’ll treasure it for years and most likely give it to her own kids.

  9. June 4, 2010 8:51 am

    Absolutely amazing! What an incredible family heirloom. She is going to love this for years to come. I loved reading about how you developed this and fit the pattern to your own style. Beautiful job!

  10. June 4, 2010 8:56 am

    wow! this is awesome!

  11. June 4, 2010 10:00 am

    amazing!! I love the book and I especially love that hugs and kisses are at the top of your little girls list!!

  12. June 4, 2010 10:24 am

    Oh my… how adorable! I just love that my little flats dolls fits perfect in the book! I actually have that book by The Quilted Fish… need to find the time to make one for my own kids. Thanks so much… I am so glad you enjoyed my tutorial!

  13. Sarah permalink
    June 4, 2010 10:42 am

    Oh my goodness….Shea! This is just amazing! I am in awe of your work. Your daughter must just be floored! Can you imagine how cool it will be for her to look back at that when she’s grown up? Amazing job, Shea!

  14. Elexis Brack permalink
    June 4, 2010 12:16 pm

    Eleanor’s response brought tears to my eyes! What a wonderful family you have. I might have to commission you to make a quiet book for my little one…someday! :)

  15. June 4, 2010 12:28 pm

    Incredible book. What a lucky, lucky girl!

  16. June 4, 2010 1:11 pm

    I love this! Especially the letters. Thanks for sharing!

  17. June 5, 2010 4:29 am

    Wonderful job! What an enjoyable and memorable gift. Thank you for sharing!

  18. June 5, 2010 4:30 am

    that is amazing!
    what a super idea!
    you made it so beautiful!

  19. June 5, 2010 1:15 pm

    What a wonderful book you have made! So full of a mother’s love. She will treasure this for ever, I’m sure :-)Those letters in the mailbox brought tears to my eyes.

  20. June 7, 2010 7:08 pm

    Shea! I am so impressed. I wish I would have attempted one of these for my kids now. Your sweet daughter will never forget it! Definitely worth all or your hard work.
    Thanks so much for sharing. Maybe I could get make one for Grand kids. (A long way off still!)
    Have a great week!

  21. Sarah D. (KC MQG) permalink
    June 10, 2010 6:30 am

    What a wonderful gift! Your own variations on the pattern are so creative.
    The ‘letters’ in the mailbox are priceless!

  22. June 10, 2010 2:43 pm

    that is simply the most awesome book/present I have ever EVER seen. Seriosuly. I want one, even if my boys are all grown up…

    I’m speechless

  23. June 19, 2010 10:34 am

    My aunt made two of those types of books from my children. My daughter is now 30 and has twin daughers and my son is 27 with a son and daughter. When my grandchildern come to “Nona’s” house, they love playing with those books. I do love the letter idea and may have to print a letter for each of my grandchildren to put in the mailbox. I thought about making a book for each of my grandchildren but don’t have the patience right now.
    Thanks for sharing!

  24. July 9, 2010 1:56 am

    This is completely amazing.
    What a labour of love!!!!

  25. August 4, 2010 5:20 am

    Shea, Such a wonderful gift! You did a fabulous job on it. I love your modification to the pattern and the personal touches are pricless.

  26. August 12, 2010 9:31 pm

    This is an amazing post. Let me tell why:
    1 – Your description and pictures of the Quiet Book are beautiful and really take us through the process, step by step.
    2 – Your patience and dedication are heart endearing. You can feel the love you have for your daughter. (I hope I sum up the courage to try it for my grand daughter!!!)
    3 – and last, but definitely not least, your little daughter’s sweet and so sincere words about her favorite things is the greatest prize you can win for bringing her up in such a loving way.
    Thank you so much for sharing. Reading your post was a delight from the first to the last word.

  27. October 27, 2010 3:50 am

    This is the most delightful, beautiful, special cloth book EVER! Wow~ You are an amazing Mama. Way to Go!
    PS I love your blog!

  28. miranda permalink
    December 7, 2010 2:01 am

    thank you so much for posting this!!! i had a book like this as a child and am now making one for my little girl. i had come to a stall and wasn’t quite sure how to finish. your post gave me some awesome ideas! i love the letters and mailbox idea…thats so cool!

    i was already going to do a page where she can braid hair, but i never thought of having her dress the girl too!

    thank you!

  29. jenni stockberger permalink
    January 7, 2011 3:33 pm

    would you ever consider making these to sell? thank you!

    • Shea permalink*
      January 7, 2011 6:16 pm

      Hi, Jenni. While I am flattered that you asked, I cannot make them to sell. It is a copyrighted pattern and you can’t reproduce them for resale. If it were possible, the labor costs would be very very high for the time involved. If you or some you know sews, they should definitely buy the pattern from The Quilted Fish. It’s a great pattern and can easily be customized like I did for my daughter’s book. Good luck!

      • jenni stockberger permalink
        January 9, 2011 4:05 pm

        thanks!! i bought it, very excited to see what i come up with. yours is the best i have ever seen–thank you for the inspiration.

  30. Marianna permalink
    January 23, 2011 9:57 pm

    Wow! I know how much time and effort it takes to make an item with that many little details. Truly a labor of love. Lots of great ideas beautifully made. Any little girl would LOVE this. Thank you for sharing it.

  31. shannon harris permalink
    April 6, 2011 10:45 pm

    I so enjoy your creative use of fabrics throughout your book, especially as a background – Most of the others sites I have checked out are a plain white background.
    I also love your take on the “timeless” standard pages. I had one and that was some 40+ yrs ago. Definitely a labor of love!
    My absolute favorite page is the pink Chuck Taylor high tops. My 3.5 yrs granddaughter, Ysabell, is obsessed with Chucks of all types and makes (as in knock offs too). It’s something her uncle, who only wears Chucks, got her hooked on when he bought her a Pink pair of low tops (?) for her 3rd birthday. She now owns 4 pairs in assorted colors and styles. Her current favorites are brown high tops with little pink flowers stitched on the outsides and a zipper on the inner side so she doesn’t have to tie them! A big deal with her as she hasn’t quite figured out where the rabbit goes through the hole.
    Could you please send me a template of yours. I would love to include it in her book I have almost finished for her 4th birthday (May 2011) and just maybe it will inspire her to figure out how that rabbit keeps getting lost!
    Thanks again for your unique ideas! Shannon

  32. tawsh permalink
    April 8, 2011 10:10 am

    LOVE your book!
    will you share how you made the suitcase?

  33. May 24, 2011 6:11 am

    What a fantastisk book you have made for your dauther.

  34. June 19, 2011 7:24 am

    This is so amazing! I may think of enlisting my mother-in-law for a project like this. With twin boys (who don’t fall asleep until 9PM) and a baby due in October, there is no way I have the time for this. Although I do have 10 months before the twins’ 3rd birthday… so if I start now…. :)

  35. achel W. permalink
    July 2, 2011 10:19 am

    Do you have a pattern for the shoe and the suitcase? I love your quiet book and have sent this post to most of my friends! I don’t know how to sew, but this is my motivation to learn. Here’s to hoping that six months is long enough for me to figure it out!

  36. July 7, 2011 2:13 am

    I came across this post via pinterest, and first of all, I looooooove your book!!! I wish I had the patience to make my own… Secondly, my little daughter is also called Eleanor Rose! Not many Eleanors around these days, particularly Eleanor Roses’!

  37. August 24, 2011 10:26 am

    Holy cow, I found this because my sister put it on Pinterest. This is the most amazing, adorable, sweet thing I have ever seen. It makes my heart hurt that I cannot make one, too. I don’t sew.

    The “letters” almost made me cry and I don’t even know you. Way to go!

    • Shea permalink*
      August 25, 2011 11:39 pm

      Well you just managed to make my day and it was already a pretty good one! Thank you so much for such kind words. It was most certainly a labor of love. My son’s 2nd birthday is right around the corner (this fall) and I am feeling some self inflected pressure to make sure his is just as detailed. I have two pages done so far, but they’ve been ‘done’ for over a year….not good! Cross your fingers I get to it soon!

      Take a sewing class! You’d be surprised at the things you can make as a beginner!

  38. August 25, 2011 12:03 am

    I love this! What age was your daughter when you made it for her? Not sure what age this type of book is made for. Thanks! :)

    • Shea permalink*
      August 25, 2011 11:36 pm

      Eleanor got the book for her 2nd birthday. She turned three in June and still LOVES to play with the book. It’s been interesting to see which pages she favored then (dress up and the carrots) vs now (the piggy bank and the matching game). Hope that helps!

  39. August 25, 2011 11:38 pm

    That does help, thanks! That gives me a year to make it :) Thanks again. I found this on Pinterest as well, so I imagine you will get many hits from there.

  40. September 8, 2011 8:08 am

    I’m visiting via Pinterest, too. =) This quiet book is amazing!! I just love it. I don’t have any kids and I don’t sew, but I’m still intrigued…and will pass this link along to someone who can make it! Ha! Thanks for the inspiration. =)

  41. Andrea permalink
    September 9, 2011 6:51 am

    Wow, that book is awesomeness and love all bundled into one. At first when I saw a couple of the pages I did think you were nuts, but then seeing the whole book in its totality, I think it’s pretty righteous and I can really see how each page is its own piece of artwork. Very cool – amazing, actually!

    I did not understand the page with ispy needing magnets – can you help me out there? Is it because you say, “iSpy a fish” and she puts a magnet onto the thing with the fish and it sticks to the other magnet? Since I have no kiddies, I am apparently ispystupid! :)

  42. September 12, 2011 10:04 pm

    Love love love the dress up doll with the luggage….was wondering where you got the stamp images for the luggage? I’m planning on doing a similar page and would love any tips on how to constructs the baggage as well. Thanks! :)

    • Shea permalink*
      September 13, 2011 12:14 pm

      Thanks for the compliment! I did a google image search for travel stamps or stickers or luggage travel stickers or country travel stickers (or something like those). I copied and pasted the images into Word and printed the page on June Tailor printable fabric. I used the same technique to do the Chuck Taylor logo on the pink high top. Hope that makes sense and helps!

      • September 13, 2011 5:31 pm

        Awesome, I’ll have to try that! Was wondering if you’d be able to kinda describe how you constructed the luggage bag itself? I noticed you pleated the right side so it could expand?

  43. September 17, 2011 2:43 pm

    I love it! So creative!

  44. marta permalink
    September 27, 2011 10:55 pm

    I usually just draw my own patterns and never buy. I bought this one though and I think you did a better job explaining with your photos and directions then the pattern itself. I am going to return it. I think you did a great job on your book and thank you for inspiring me to make one for my kids!!!

    • Shea permalink*
      October 5, 2011 2:33 pm

      Bummer that it didn’t work for you! Good luck making your own- I think it was fun figuring out what things to keep and change to fit my own child. It is a ton of work, but SO worth it! Now… I need to get cracking on the one for my son! :)

  45. October 4, 2011 8:21 am

    This is way way tooo precious! Makes me wanna cry. Just beautiful!

    • Shea permalink*
      October 5, 2011 2:35 pm

      Thank you! There were times while I was making it made me want to cry…. as in “Why did I decide to go all out?! It’s the middle of the night and I want to sleep!” Haha! Lots of work, but so worth it to see my kids play with it.

  46. stephanie permalink
    October 4, 2011 10:18 pm

    It looks like your pages are stiffer than most Quiet Books I have seen (which I love!). How did you get them like that?

    Thanks for the great ideas!

    • Shea permalink*
      October 5, 2011 2:44 pm

      I used the pattern from The Quilted Fish as my jumping off point and followed the patterns directions for making the structure of the book, including the material inside the pages. I like how she designed that part- nice and big so that two kids can play at once. The pages have double sided ultra firm fusible stabilizer in them. Pellon #72, I believe.

      • stephanie permalink
        October 5, 2011 8:33 pm

        Awesome! Thanks! I just bought the pattern. My extended family is each making multiple copies of a page and then we will swap at Christmas So we each end up with a book. I might steal your suitcase idea! I get the job of assembling the whole thing and the covers. Time to chain myself to the sewing machine LOL.

  47. October 10, 2011 9:39 pm

    I love your explanations and pictures – can you share a template or ideas of how you constructed the shoe? Thanks!

  48. Debbie McGarry permalink
    October 19, 2011 8:39 pm

    My mother (85years old now) made some of these for my children. I now have made 3 for 3 grandsons, and am ready to start 2 for my granddaughters. I designed many of my own pages for the boys, and your quiet book has help with some ideas for the girls.
    I have worked at a grade school for over 19 years, and assist the teachers. Thus, I have made and designed many a bulletin board.
    When I appliqued the boys, I just used a close zigzag. I came up with a bug jar, that was see through, and then the caption said, “how many bees in the jar?” There was velcro to attach a few on the outside of the jar.
    It is great to se other creative peoples ideas. Thanks for sharing.

  49. Krystyna permalink
    October 25, 2011 9:43 pm

    How big does The Quilted Fish’s pattern say to make the pages? I’m thinking about buying the pattern, but I want to be sure the page size is what I want and it doesn’t give any specifics on their site! Your book looks big enough for two kids to play with at once, which is great since I am making one for a set of twins… Not quite ambitious enough to make two :)

    • Shea permalink*
      November 3, 2011 12:02 am

      Hi there! I don’t want to go into detail too much about the instructions, since it is someone else’s hard work in writing that pattern. Hope that makes sense. But I do hope I can answer your question in some way. It is definitely big enough for two kids to sit side by side and play together. My kids are two and three and can each play on a page without anyone getting in someone else’s space. I hear you on the lack of motivation to make two books! Ha!

  50. October 29, 2011 7:08 am


  51. Cassi permalink
    November 5, 2011 9:09 pm

    Your book is just incredible! I’ve begun to plan out one for my 19 month old, hoping I can get it done for Christmas! Lol Thanks for posting these pages as they are great inspiration!
    Just wanted to throw an idea out for some.. You could use a 3 ring binder and use eyelets in your pages. This way you can take out a page if it gets damaged or add new pages once your little one gives you more ideas :) Just an idea I wanted to share!

    • Shea permalink*
      November 8, 2011 11:25 am

      Oh! Good thinking! That is a great idea and I am so glad you shared it.

      Thanks so much for the compliment!

    • November 16, 2011 8:26 pm

      This is absolutely the best quiet book I’ve ever seen! My daughter is 2 1/2 yrs old and would love this. Thank you much for sharing all your wonderful details. The love you put into it is just breath taking… I’m ordering the pattern and getting started asap!! May have it done by Christmas.

      Saw this Pinterest by the way!!!! Again I’m so inspired!!!!

      • Shea permalink*
        November 16, 2011 10:52 pm

        Wow! What a compliment! That Pinterest sure has brought over some pinners for sure! Ha!
        It was definitely a labor of love, that’s for sure. I hope you will share pics of yours… they’d motivate me to get my son’s finished up! :)

  52. Emily permalink
    November 15, 2011 8:53 am

    How much is it to order something like this! It is SO CUTE!!! What a wonderful idea and great learning activity and heirloom item for your children!

    • Shea permalink*
      November 16, 2011 10:44 pm

      Thank you for the compliment. I definitely hope it is something that my daughter will hold on to and pass down. The pattern/directions can be ordered from the designer’s website. I changed up a few pages, but her design is essentially what I went with. As far as paying for a finished product, I cannot sell a finished one. Also, the labor alone would make it insanely expensive because of the number of hours it took to make. If you know someone who sews, the pattern is a good place to start. I am sorry I am not more help for you!

  53. November 20, 2011 7:31 pm

    The book looks beautiful, you did a lovely job.

    I keep hearing about these “quiet books” but I’m not really sure what they are.

  54. November 27, 2011 10:09 pm

    Wow! Wow! Wow!!!

  55. brooke permalink
    November 29, 2011 8:01 am

    This is amazing! Do you sale these? I would love to have one for my little girl but can’t sew. You could definitely make some money on these! Thanks!

    • Shea permalink*
      November 30, 2011 10:59 pm

      Hi! Thanks for the compliment! I am sorry, but I don’t sell them. It’s someone else’s pattern and it is a very labor intensive project. That book has well over 100 hours in it and even at minimum wage… it’d be a pretty pricey gift. :)

  56. Kara permalink
    December 2, 2011 1:01 pm

    I saw this post a few months ago, and ordered the pattern and have been making it! I was wondering if you think an extra page would fit in it? I want to have 12 instead of 10, but I don’t want to go through all of the work, only to find out that they won’t fit when I put it all together!

    • Shea permalink*
      December 3, 2011 11:07 pm

      I just took a peek at my daughter’s book and I do think you could do that. Just make them a bit closer together. As long as the extra page you are adding isn’t crazy thick with the activity, it should be just great!

      • Kara permalink
        December 4, 2011 3:31 pm

        Great! Thanks for the help, and inspiration! Your quiet book is AMAZING!

  57. December 7, 2011 1:14 pm

    This is BY FAR the most amazing craft EVER!! I had one of these books when I was a little girl (not sure if it was hand made by someone I knew)… idea ever!!

    • Shea permalink*
      December 8, 2011 9:57 am

      Oh, thank you! I am SO impressed that you still have yours!

  58. December 29, 2011 12:12 am

    I have linked your blog to mine. I have done my own quiet book and thought my readers would like to see others that inspired me.

    • Shea permalink*
      December 31, 2011 6:09 pm

      That looks SUPER! What a treasure!

  59. December 30, 2011 12:18 pm

    I’ve had this bookmarked for months as inspiration to make my own daughter a quiet book. I am finally starting it! The pattern you said you used as a jumping point is no longer available though. You may have answered this in the comments but would you mind sharing the dimensions of the pages? width and height mainly? Love your work, this is one of my favorite quiet books out there.

    • Shea permalink*
      December 31, 2011 6:09 pm

      I am so sorry you’re having a hard time finding it! Have you tried e-mailing Amanda of The Quilted Fish? She’s the designer and might now of a place to buy it. Hope that is helpful. If not, let me know!

  60. December 30, 2011 4:03 pm

    Very well done I’ve been wanting to make one for my daughter for a long time thanks for inspired me to get working on it

  61. January 6, 2012 9:09 pm

    How big are your pages? I was thinking of making mine 12×12 but yours looks bigger than that.

  62. January 13, 2012 5:49 pm

    This book is simply beautiful, love your adaptations, mmm might make my project list for 2012

  63. Laura Gunderon permalink
    January 20, 2012 5:15 pm

    I absolutely love this!!! I only wish that I was handy enough with a sewing machine to make one for my own daughter!! You could definitaly sell these!! I know I would buy one!! :)

  64. January 27, 2012 9:58 am

    I found this on pinterest-
    OMYgosh— I’ve been looking for a quiet/activity book to make for my grandsons.
    thank you!!!!

  65. Katie permalink
    January 30, 2012 10:43 pm

    Hi there, I saw this on pinterest and immediately fell in love with the idea of a quiet book so much that I am currently in the process of making one for my up and coming niece! Thank you so much for the inspiration! I bought the pattern book from thequiltedfish and I have gone over the Eye Spy instructions page several times and I am still not quite sure what the purpose of the magnets is? If I left the magnets out of it do you think the page would be compromised? Again, thank you for sharing your creativity!

    • Shea permalink*
      February 9, 2012 1:46 pm

      Hi, Katie!
      I initially had trouble understanding how the Eye Spy page worked, too. The magnets help hold the pieces together when the child is matching them. If you didn’t put them in, I think they would slide around each time the child bumped the page. I don’t think it would be a huge issue, but I could see how a kid (like my daughter who is meticulous and thinks everything should be ‘just so’) might get frustrated with that. Because the page is part of a book that doesn’t have perfectly flat pages, the magnets help.
      I actually pieced a backing on my magnet pieces (I showed a pic of that in the post, but could explain more if needed) because I was afraid of the sticky back on the magnet coming off.
      I hope that helps!

  66. Melissa permalink
    February 3, 2012 8:06 pm

    My mom made my son (who’s now 20) a quiet book when he was a toddler and he loved it. I still have it and it will always be cherished

    • Shea permalink*
      February 9, 2012 1:46 pm

      How awesome that you still have it! What a treasure!

  67. February 19, 2012 11:39 pm

    Currently working on my own quiet book… thanks for all the ideas and inspiration!!!

  68. anna permalink
    February 20, 2012 4:26 pm

    im seriously in awe! how long did this take you. I’m tempted to try to make one but it looks so intimidating. my daughter is into dress up the dress up doll one looks like an awesome idea. how does the close stay on? velcro?

    • Shea permalink*
      February 22, 2012 8:26 pm

      Thank you! I won’t lie… took what felt like an eternity. It was my only sewing project for about two months. A lot of late nights. But it’s sort of like having a baby… the end result is so satisfying that you forget the in between. Ha! Yes, the clothes stay on with velcro (the undies are velcro). There is a link to the Moda Bakeshop pattern and her directions explain it in detail. Hope that helps!

  69. christina permalink
    February 28, 2012 3:34 pm

    Oh my gosh, this book is beautiful! I love all the detail and especially the little notes you wrote to put in the mailbox! Thank you for sharing!

  70. March 9, 2012 1:07 pm

    I’m in love your quiet book and am in the process of starting my own! Could you tell me where you found all your lovely fabric???

    • Shea permalink*
      March 14, 2012 9:40 pm

      Hi, Laura! Thank you (and good luck with yours!) Is there a specific page you had in mind? There are just soooo many different fabrics in there that it would help me narrow down what you are hunting for.

  71. May 17, 2012 2:21 pm

    if you enjoy making Quiet Book please join us on facebook with The Quiet Book Club were we share ideas and tips and pics with one another ;)!/groups/quietbookclub/

  72. Marcy permalink
    May 28, 2012 9:48 pm

    I’m considering tackling this labor of love! Your’s is so inspiring! My thick skull can’t figure why you’d use magnets in the Eye Spy page pieces though…can you give me a clue?! is there a metal sheet in there somewhere?? I looked at Quilted Fishes site to order but there’s no magnet explanation there either…

    • Shea permalink*
      June 4, 2012 3:35 pm

      Hi, Marcy! That’s actually a question I get a lot…
      I initially had trouble understanding how the Eye Spy page worked, too. The magnets help hold the pieces together when the child is matching them. There are magnets behind the pieced panel of little eye spy squares and then another magnet on the back of each piece.
      I actually pieced a backing on my magnet pieces (I showed a pic of that in the post, but could explain more if needed) because I was afraid of the sticky back on the magnet coming off.
      I hope that helps!

  73. June 28, 2012 12:17 am

    That is so gorgeous and creative. Also a gift that they can keep and pass down one day. Great work.

  74. Nichole permalink
    July 16, 2012 10:00 pm

    This is perfect! I did “the zoo book” and old 60’s pattern from vogue and modified it to fit my first daughter. Now that my second daughter’s first birthday is coming up I wanted to make a quiet book for her too, but didn’t want to do the same as her sisters. Thank you for the post!!!

  75. Annette permalink
    August 11, 2012 9:52 am

    I love your adaptations of some of the pages and your different pages. I have this same pattern and I am almost finished with it. It took myself and my mom about 2 years to finish it. I’m a single mom and did the pages mostly at night too. I love it though and my daughter has played with the pages as they have become finished. I put magnets in the eye spy page, but I wish I hadn’t. The interfacing on the background is like felt, so the pieces sort of stick anyways to the page. Oh well. Love seeing this version though. Thanks for sharing!

    • Shea permalink*
      August 14, 2012 4:35 pm

      How awesome that you made it with your mom! What a good way to spend time together. I know what you mean about the magnets. The ones that seal the pocket closed in our book have come ‘unstuck’ from the page. Sort of frustrating, but I’ll deal with it.

      I hope your daughter loves it for years to come! Ours is over two years old (ancient in my kids’ toy world!) and still gets heavy use.

      • Annette permalink
        August 14, 2012 4:49 pm

        Well, Mom was clear across the country, but when we were together we helped each other out. I velcroed the eye spy section to the page, but the magnets are bothersome inside the pictures. I also did the piggy bank slightly different as I was aiming for larger toddler friendly coins, but now she is 3, so I guess we don’t need those any more. LOL. Thanks for sharing.

  76. Elaine permalink
    August 11, 2012 9:59 pm

    These ideas are wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing. I have a question about the construction of a quiet book:

    What do you use to make the pages a bit stiff, in between the outside fabric?

    Thank you, again,


    • Shea permalink*
      August 14, 2012 4:37 pm

      It’s a really thick fusible interfacing. I don’t have the pattern handy, but I know I used what was listed inside in the materials list. It’s great because it adds a thick, firm play surface without being too hard to move around.

  77. August 23, 2012 10:38 pm

    I love what you did! You are amazing! Way to take my project and make it your own. I am impressed!

  78. September 27, 2012 6:36 pm

    You did a beautiful job. I found this via Pinterest and it’s one of the better quiet books I have seen. Thanks for sharing.

  79. Nicole permalink
    October 23, 2012 12:40 pm


    I somehow wandered over here and am thrilled to see your daughter’s full name – my five year old is Eleanor Margaret Rose (we call her Rosie).

    I never made her a quiet book though as she uses the one my mom made me!

  80. Amber permalink
    November 3, 2012 2:47 am

    This quiet book is just lovely! One of the best I’ve ever seen. I created a robot themed book for an older nephew last year, and was searching pinterest for ideas for my daughter’s, when I ran across yours. Her name: Eleanor Rose! And the son we are expecting: Graham! Just wanted to note that you not only have lovely books…but lovely names for your children! ( :

  81. February 26, 2013 8:32 pm

    I love your book! It is amazing!
    I have been trying to find the moda bake shop pattern for the doll and it is not there anymore. Any clues where to find it?

  82. Mandi permalink
    May 23, 2013 1:57 pm

    I was wondering if you could provide a bit more of a description on how you did the suitcase for this quiet book? Such a great book you made for your daughter!

  83. July 27, 2013 11:40 pm

    This book is absolutely gorgeous. It appears to be worth every hour spent making it. What a lucky child…it looks like it would be so much fun to play with!

  84. Susanne permalink
    November 6, 2013 6:21 am


  85. Stefanie permalink
    February 19, 2014 9:24 pm

    Hi! I am trying to get started on a quiet book for my nieces and wanted to know the general pattern/dimensions and type of fabric. I tried the link for the pattern that you used but it comes up with an error… do you know where I might be able to find that information? Thank you!

  86. Alyssa permalink
    March 22, 2014 11:22 am

    I love that these pages are thin and sturdy. What did you use to make them sturdy but thin at the same time?


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