Reading picture books to your baby can help introduce concepts like colors, numbers, letters and shapes, and encourage exploration of the world around her. However, babies can be hard on books. They like to chew on them, rip the pages and throw them on the ground, which can make them look beat up and worn very quickly. By making your own picture book out of fabric, you can give your baby a book to enjoy for many years -- even if he also uses it as a chew toy.
Cut eight rectangles 15 by 7 inches from the cotton fabric of your choice. You can use several fabrics to create variety among the pages.
Cut eight rectangles 15 by 7 inches from batting.
Print 6-by-6-inch photos on iron-on transfer paper to include in your book. You can use family photos to create a keepsake, or you can use pictures of letters, numbers, shapes or colors. You can create your own photos and illustrations in a photo-editing program, or you can download clip art or other images from an online source.
Center each photo on either side of the rectangle. Place one photo an inch from the left margin, top and bottom of the left side of the rectangle. Place one photo an inch from the right margin, top and bottom of the right side of the rectangle.
Lay the transfer sheet that comes with the iron-on transfer paper over each photo and iron it in place. Follow the directions that come with the transfer paper on ironing time. Most require ironing for about 45 seconds to one minute.
Leave one rectangle plain. This will form the cover and back of your book, and you can decorate it separately.
Layer two rectangles together with the pictures facing each other and a layer of batting in between them. Sew all the way around the rectangle leaving one short side open.
Turn the rectangle out so that the pictures appear on the outside and the batting is on the inside. Iron the seams flat.
Tuck in the edges of the open side and iron them flat. Top stitch or whip stitch the edge closed.
Sew the remaining rectangles together using the same steps. One completed rectangle will have pictures on one side and will be blank on the other side.
Layer your book together. Lay the plain "page" on the bottom, with the picture side staring up at you. Layer the other three pages on top, and pin all the pages together at the sides.
Sew a straight line down the center of the book, binding all the pages together. Sew two additional lines next to the first line to reinforce the binding.
Decorate the front and back cover as you would like, using fabric markers or embroidery floss to create the title. Draw a picture or add some applique. You can also include a photo for the cover, if you like.