Crayon Booklet Party Favors

So before I go back in time to share some of my summer (and pre-summer – eek!) projects, here’s one that I just finished last week.  My daughter recently turned two and we threw a casual little park get-together for some of her kiddo friends and their parents.  Around the same time that I was planning her party, I stumbled upon small + friendly’s new-sew crayon wrap tutorial.  I thought it was genius!  What a simple project to make and perfect for parents of toddlers to whip out at restaurants or whenever they need to distract their little one.  I decided I wanted to make them as part of the party favor for Yuki’s birthday party!

But could I keep it simple?  Could I keep it no-sew?  Nooooooooo . . . obviously not.  I had to go and make it all difficult for myself.  Hah!  Well actually, though did make a few changes and add a few steps, it was still a super simple project and I was able to whip up 17 of these crayon booklets pretty quickly.  AND I had all the materials I needed already in my stash (except for the crayons), so that was a big plus!

So here’s how I used Carla’s tutorial and made my own lil version.  You’ll need:

Felt (I used a wool felt for the outside and acrylic for the inside because that is what I had on hand)
Exacto knife
Crayons & paper
Sewing essentials

First, Carla mentions in her tutorial that if you want to thicken your felt to wash it in hot water, put it in the dryer until almost dry and then iron.  My yellow felt was wool, so I decided to give it a try.  But something went terribly wrong!  After washing it, I noticed that the felt was totally coming off in clumps.  It was pilling and crazy-uneven-fuzzy all over and definitely not any thicker.  I threw it in the dryer anyways, but it looked the same when it came out.  I didn’t really take a picture of what it looked like right out of the dryer and after ironing, but here’s what it looked like after I picked off a lot of the loose felt (that ball of fuzz is all the stuff I picked off by hand).

Wool felt isn’t cheap, so I wasn’t about to abandon it.  I just picked off as much as I could and smoothed the rest down with my hands and in the end, I don’t think you can tell at all on the finished product.  It definitely wasn’t any thicker though and I have no clue what I did wrong.  Any ideas?  Has this happened to you?

Ok anyways, I wanted the booklets to fit into these little metal buckets I had bought from the dollar bin at Target, so I had to size mine down.  The size of my unfolded booklet was 5.25 x 7.5 inches.  I added a little tab to my template for the velcro closure.  The original tutorial/pattern has more info about the size and spacing of the slits.  Mine had four pairs of slits for the crayons on the left side and two 2.75 inch slits for the paper on the right.  So here’s what my template looked like:

Using your blade, cut through the lines on your paper template.  Cut a 5.25 x 7.5 inch rectangle from your inner felt.  Lay the template on top and mark the lines using chalk or a disappearing ink pen.  Cut those with your blade.  Using your template as a guide, cut another rectangle WITH the closure tab from your outer felt.

On your outer felt, feel free to add an applique or any other decorations.  Sew one side of the velcro to the tab and the other to the opposite side of the cover about a 1/4 inch away from the edge.

Pin the two layers of felt together with wrong sides together.  Make sure that when you open up the booklet the crayons slits are on the left and the paper slits are on the upper right.

Sew around the edge in a rectangle.

Your booklet is done!  Now to add the goodies . . .

Cut your paper into fourths along the long edge of the paper.  Each strip should be 2.75 inches wide.  Stack the 4 strips and fold them in half.

Slide your crayons in on the left and your paper through the top slit and back out the bottom slit on the right.  The most fun I had was picking out the color combos for the 4 crayons 🙂

And you’re done!  Pretty simple, right?

Now go make 16 more 😉

Thanks to Carla for the fabulous inspiration and tutorial!  I’ve stashed one of these in our diaper bag and I imagine I’ll be whipping it out quite often.

What kinds of “distractions” do you keep on hand to keep your child entertained?  My sister-in-law was the one who taught me to ALWAYS have paper and writing utensils on hand (for any age kid).  And you know what she carries in her purse and has entertained children for loooong periods of time?  A balloon!  Deflated, of course.  Serious (long lasting) fun can be had with a simple balloon.  Genius.

Happy sewing and have a great weekend!!