Table of Contents
- Choosing quiet book patterns’ materials ─ paper or cardstock?
- Cutting quiet book patterns ─ essential tools for your project
- Tips for cutting quiet book patterns and templates
- Quiet book patterns storage ─ keeping your quiet book templates safe and handy
- The next steps ─ collecting quiet book materials
So you have found all your favourite quiet book ideas and you have also hand-drawn or collected soft copies of all your quiet book templates. Now is the time to cut these patterns out to finally make your quiet book. However before you hit that print button, it is worth thinking about what materials you should be using for your quiet book patterns, and how to cut them out.
Choosing quiet book patterns’ materials ─ paper or cardstock?
For most parts, you will be using ordinary paper to draw or print your quiet book diy templates. Cheap, low density paper is perfect for most of these crafting jobs, such as cutting out large letters, numbers and shapes. Low density paper is also perfect for fussy-cutting more detailed quiet book patterns such as parts of an animal or bird, parts of a tree or a tractor etc.
However there will be instances when your quiet book patterns will require a more robust medium for making quiet book templates. This is particularly true for the overall page template along with its matching interfacing. For these craft jobs, you will need a higher density paper, ideally cardstock or cardboard from old cereal boxes.
Quiet book patterns using old cereal boxes
The next time you’re running out of cereal, don’t throw the box away! The card from cereal boxes is perfect for making quiet book templates. This thicker card is perfect for drawing the outline of the page size on the back of fabric or iron-on interfacing, making your cutting job that bit easier. It is important — when you are tracing the outline of the quiet book page template on to the fabric or interfacing – that the quiet book pattern keep its shape and that the straight edges do not get compromised. The template also needs to be robust enough to be reused multiple times for the same quiet book.
High density cardstock is also ideal for cutting out repeat patterns in your quiet book. For example take a look at the little fish in this quiet book page; a quiet book pattern for fish made out of cardstock would serve you much better than a flimsy paper pattern because the former would hold up well for repeated use.
Now that you know why you might need to use paper or cardstock for different kinds of quiet book patterns, look through your quiet book plan and see what medium is best for which parts of your baby quiet book templates.
Cutting quiet book patterns ─ essential tools for your project
Of course you cannot cut quiet book patterns without proper tools. Read on for a low-down on what you need for all your cutting jobs and why.
Cutting quiet book patterns with scissors
Remember to keep a sharp pair of scissors for this job. These are separate from your fabric cutting scissors. It is best to keep two pairs of scissors for cutting quiet book templates: a larger, more ergonomic pair that will not put pressure on your thumb; and a smaller one for more precise cuts. For example these Fiskar’s student scissors do a brilliant job of slicing through tough cardstock and all kinds of materials. Don’t let the ‘student’ label deceive you though. These scissors have been well used over the past many years for all kinds of paper and fabric crafts. They have been brilliant in cutting all the quiet book patterns you see on this website.
Cutting quiet book patterns with a craft knife
You may also occasionally have to use a cutting blade, for example a craft knife or a retractable knife to cut out fiddly bits, for example the centres of letters A, B, D etc. Even if you don’t cut out the entire centre using a craft knife, it is still a handy tool to get the cutting slit started.
You can then use a sharp pair of smaller scissors to cut out the central hole in your quiet book template. Usually a pair of 5-inch scissors work perfectly for fiddly bits such as these Korbond scissors that have been used for all the quiet book projects you see on this website.
Tips for cutting quiet book patterns and templates
Now that you have the right tools for cutting your quiet book patterns, it is time to get cutting. Since this might potentially be a fairly time-consuming stage of your quiet book DIY process, it helps to keep a few tips in mind.
Remember to move the paper rather than the scissors when cutting through tight curves. Keep your hand that holds the scissors fairly still. Only move the fingers to open the blade wide for the next slice-through.
This is also a good time to determine once and for all whether the quiet book pattern you have chosen will work or not. For example if a quiet book template is too fiddly or impossible to cut out of paper or cardstock, you can tell that it will be nearly impossible to cut out of fabric. Pursuing such a quiet book pattern is futile. You will be setting yourself up for failure if you continue to try and cut and use the complicated felt book template. It is best to change the pattern or look for ways to improve and adapt it to make it work better for fabric.
For example the letter G on the left might look fancy, but if you try to cut out a print of this font, you can tell it will be very tricky to work with and even trickier on fabric. A simple solution is to use a less complicated font that works just as well for paper as well as fabric.
Quiet book patterns storage ─ keeping your quiet book templates safe and handy
You have now become a pro at how to make a quiet book template. However once you cut out all the little paper and card pieces, you must find a way of organising and storing them in a way that is quick and easy.
Store quiet book patterns inside CD envelopes
One of the best ways of doing this on the cheap is to use CD envelopes. These paper envelopes have a clear window on the other side. You can easily label them on the paper side and see what is inside through the window. They are also easy to store in a file/folder, a drawer or a shoe box. Try to store the quiet book pattern envelopes vertically so that it is easy to access them for future purposes.
Store quiet book patterns inside clear punch pocket sleeves
Another way to store your quiet book ideas and templates is in clear punch pocket sleeves that can then be filed away inside a folder. You could label the clear sleeve by making simple labels out of cheap painters tape or masking tape. The advantage of storing your quiet book patterns this way is that you know exactly where everything is kept. The downside is that the templates could slide out of the top of the sleeves if you are not careful.
The best way to store quiet book patterns ─ a cheap and easy two-step method
One easy way to overcoming this problem is to first store your quiet book templates inside the CD envelopes; and then storing these little envelopes inside the punch pockets. You can also partially block the top opening of the clear sleeves using simple paper clips. This will stop the quiet book templates from sliding out and getting lost.
Keeping your quiet book patterns safe and accessible means that it will be easier for you to use them when needed. You will also find it quicker to make more quiet books because some (or all) of the patterns will already be ready and waiting for you in those little CD envelopes.
The next steps ─ collecting quiet book materials
The best thing about cutting quiet book patterns, apart from moving forward in your quiet book diy project, is that it gives you a real feel of what materials you would need for your projects. For example you might have thought you would be using felt to make a little house on one of the quiet book pages. But once you start cutting the house template, you might realise that actually using tartan/hessian might be a better option. In this way you can determine the basic supplies you need for each page of your quiet book.
As you cut the quiet book patterns out, visualise where each resulting piece will fit into the final book and keep a list of what materials you will need for each piece. By the time you are done cutting out all the pieces of your quiet book, you should have a fairly exhaustive list of all the supplies you will need for you project. Go over this list once more and edit/tweak where necessary.
Once your quiet book materials list is ready, go scavenging around your home to see if there are any materials that you might already have at home to do part of the job. You are bound to find at least one item that you might be able to use within your quiet book for example a set of large buttons or beads, a piece of unusued fabric, or even a pair of old jeans that can be cut up to use within your quiet book.
Now tick off the things you have found already at home, and purchase everything else either online or in a craft shop. If you are unsure of the exact quantities you need, err on the side of caution. It is a huge pain when you realize that you are falling short of one bead to complete a page; but to order it online means you have to wait at least 48 hours for it to arrive through the post.
So don’t cut back too tightly on your materials list. You can always use leftover craft beads in your next project, or donate them to a local charity.
Your next step now is to get all your quiet book materials together. You can read all about what quiet book materials you need here.