When I set out to make the quiet book for Miss O, I knew that I would have to include a page dedicated to her favourite song: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. My husband is geeky and has messed around with LEDs and similar electronics in the past. I asked him if there was any way to include LEDs and a push-button that played Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. At first, he tried to use the music from a greeting card. Unfortunately through much trial and error, he just couldn’t get it to work. Next he tried LilyPad Arduino which is designed to work with fabric. Again, we couldn’t get the music to work. Eventually I stumbled across exactly what I was looking for – a large push-button with blinking LEDs attached! Once it arrived, I had hubby convert it to five blinking yellow lights as opposed to the six coloured lights it came with. I then got to work on assembling the page I hoped would be Miss O’s favourite. This page could easily be adapted so as not to include the lights and sounds. Adding fiberfill or a crinkly material to the star will still make it incredibly tactile and fun!
- 1 sheet black or dark blue felt
- 1 sheet yellow felt
- Star buttons
- Glitter beads
- Plastic lacing or ribbon
- Other glitter embellishments
- Embroidery floss in matching colour or metallic gold
- Push button sound with attached LEDs
Start by cutting out a yellow star that is large enough to cover your electronics. Ensure that you allow extra felt to accommodate for the height of the electronics. If you are not using the electronics, simply cut a large star from the felt. If using crinkle paper, but sure to cut the felt & the crinkle paper at the same time so they align correctly.
Cut out a few small stars from the remaining yellow fabric. String your beads onto your plastic lacing or ribbon. Do not tie knots on the ends just yet – this will be done in a few steps.
Lay everything out on the page just as you like it including all buttons and other embellishments. Take a quick photo of your layout so that you know where you placed everything as you will need to remove many of the items in order to stitch others into place. Pin your felt stars onto the page to secure them. Leave the electronics aside until the end – the weight of it will make stitching on other items difficult.
Start attaching all embellishments. On my page, the silver swirls are brads from my scrapbooking supplies. It was simple to push them through the page. Next I sewed on the buttons. Next was the small felt stars. Using a tiny hole punch, I punched two holes where I wanted the ends of the plastic lacing to go through the page. Once the ends were through to the back, I tied knots in the ends. Use a few small stitches with black embroidery thread to secure the knots to the page.
The large star for the electronics requires a little more precision and patience. Hubby bent the pins on the LEDs near the actual light so that only the light would stick through the felt and the pins would lie flat. I punched a small hole near the points of the star to feed the lights into – make sure you leave plenty of space for your running stitch around the star. Once I had the layout perfected, I stitched down some of the wires to hold the electronics relatively in place while I stitched the star to the page. Take your time – it will ensure you get it right the first time and save you from any headaches later on. You’ll be proud of your effort once you’re finished!
Andrea can always be found with a new craft in front of her, a form of technology on her right and a coffee on her left. This is how she survives suburbia with her two crazy toddlers in tow.