Hello there!
  • From hosting a shrimp boil, celebrating holidays, making homemade scratch art paper, sewing gifts and throwing parties to cooking delicious food, you will find it all here at Skip To My Lou. The site is full of free patterns, downloads and I hope plenty of inspiration. Please hang out with me awhile and check it out!
read more >

Fabric I Spy Book

Posted by  ·  September 17, 2011  ·  Last Updated: September 17, 2011

We are baking, sewing & crafting up a storm, preparing handmade gifts for this holiday season. I am sharing 30 wonderful sewn gifts from 30 amazing bloggers! Head on over to According to Kelly for 30 fabulous crafty gifts. A Southern Fairytale is spotlighting 30 edible yummies & holiday-inspired recipes.You definitely don’t want to miss a day! Check out ALL of our creative projects HERE.

How To Make A Fabric I Spy Book

Hi! I’m Bonnie from Fishsticks
. I have been having a wonderful time following along with the Holiday
Bake, Craft and Sew-Along, and I’m really excited to jump in and share a little sewing
project with you, too!
This Fabric I-Spy Book is a perfect gift for toddlers to preschoolers, and it’s a great way
to use up those scraps that you’ve been hanging on to! The book is folded accordionstyle
so your little one can read it like a book:

or unfold it to seek and find on multiple pages all at once:

Can you find a white measuring tape? a dalmation with spots? #18 celebrating? two
barbecue grills? a swimming dinosaur with rainbow dots? a mama with six little babies?

Ready to get started? You’ll need plenty of small pieces of busy, colorful fabric, some
freezer paper, a pencil, fusible fleece, a metal snap or hook & loop fasteners (like Velcro
or Aplix) and all your regular sewing notions. You’ll be using ¼” seam allowance
Your book will need 12 pages. I used 6 simple one-piece pages of fabric with plenty of
things to spy. Each unfinished page measures 6 ½” x 6 ½”:

Then I added 6 pages that I pieced together using smaller scraps for even more things to

The pieced pages use a simple freezer paper piecing technique. Start by measuring and
cutting out a piece of freezer paper that is 6 ½” square.

Use a pencil and a straight edge to draw the design that you’ll use for your page on the
matte side of the freezer paper. I used various angles to make the finished pages have a
fun, wonky look to them. I also labeled my pieces to help me with putting them in the
right order and keeping them right-side up.

Cut out your freezer paper pieces.

Position one freezer paper piece on one piece of fabric with the shiny side down. You’ll
be able to see through the freezer paper so that you can position it just how you want it.
Iron the freezer paper to the fabric.
Lay your quilting ruler so that it overlaps the one edge of the freezer paper by ¼” and cut.
Repeat on all four sides.

Repeat for the remaining fabric pieces.

Peel away the freezer paper and sew the smaller pieces together using ¼” seam
allowance. Press the seam allowance open.

Peel away the freezer paper and sew the larger piece to the smaller pieces using ¼” seam
allowance. Press the seam allowance open.

Trim page to 6 ½” x 6 ½”.

Repeat until all your pages are ready to be sewn together.
Decide on a layout for your book. You’ll need two sets of six pages. I alternated pieced
pages with one-piece pages and tried to keep similar colors apart. The page at the far
right in the bottom set will be the cover of your book.

Once you’ve decided on your layout, sew each set of six pages into a strip.

Iron fusible fleece to the back side of the bottom strip of pages.

Measure and mark the center point ¾” from the right edge of your cover page. If you’ll
be using a metal snap, apply the stud side of the snap to this point. If you’ll be using
hook & loop fasteners, cut a ½” square piece of hook and sew it here.

Cut a 2 ½” square for the tab fastener.

If you’re using hook & loop fasteners, cut a ½” square of loop and sew it ½” from one
corner of the tab fabric. (If you’re using a metal snap, you’ll apply the socket side when
you’re finished assembling the book.)

Fold the tab fabric over right sides together and sew along one short edge and the raw
long edge, leaving the edge furthest from the loop fabric open.

Trim the corners, turn right side out and press.

Center tab with ¼” overhang on the page at the opposite end of the strip from your cover
page and baste in place about 1/8″ from the page edge. I’m using snaps to fasten this
book, so the tab is bare. If you’re using hook and loop fasteners, the loop fabric that you
sewed on the tab should face up.

Place page strips right sides together and pin in place. Sew all the way around, leaving a
4″ opening in the center of one edge of one page.

Trim corners and turn book right side out through the opening. Push corners out neatly
and press well.

Neatly topstitch the opening shut 1/8″ from the folded edge.

Stitch “in the ditch” along the seam that separates each of the pages.

Fold your cover page in towards the page next to it and press the fold very well with a hot
steam iron.

Fold the next page in the opposite direction and press the new fold well.

Repeat this process until your whole book has been folded accordion-style and pressed so
that the pages lie neatly.

If you’re fastening with a metal snap, apply the socket to the tab fastener.

And, you’re ready for hunting!

Filed Under: Gifts to Sew

Leave a Comment


  1. Telia
    Thursday, March 16th, 2017
    I'm kinda going crazy without the pictures help!!!!
  2. Jenna
    Thursday, November 10th, 2016
    any chance we can get this tutorial with the pics? I can't wait to make one for my nephew :) thanks
  3. Amanda
    Wednesday, November 11th, 2015
    None of the pictures show up on this tutorial is there anyway to fix this?
  4. Christina
    Sunday, March 2nd, 2014
    Thank you for this great idea! I am starting one today for my grandson's 2nd birthday. Maybe it will slow him down for a few minutes! Perfect carseat activity and bedtime book.
  5. Laurie Gosh
    Saturday, September 7th, 2013
    Beautiful I Spy book! Thank you for sharing this cute book. I am inspired to make these for my grandkids.
  6. Thursday, March 7th, 2013
    Thank you for this great idea that went down well for my 3 year old niece. xx
  7. Sunday, September 25th, 2011
    just one note If your fabric has a right side up design, pay attention to that when you sew your two strips of blocks together! Here's my 1st book.
    Thanks for the excellent tutorial and super cute idea!!
  8. Saturday, September 24th, 2011
    Oh my Gosh, this is so cute. I want to make one of these for my grandsom. Thanks for posting the directions.
  9. Tuesday, September 20th, 2011
    This is so fun! I am sitting here running my stash through my mind. Darn! I think I need more fabric. What a shame! :-)
  10. Adriana
    Monday, September 19th, 2011
    please, tell me where do you buy those lovely fabrics!! i'm going crazy looking for them! You're really the Greatest Artist i've ever seen!
  11. Sunday, September 18th, 2011
    Love this project! Can't wait to make one for my granddaughter.
  12. Sunday, September 18th, 2011
    This is adorable! I love the pictures showing your toddler totally engaged in the book!
  13. Miranda
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Love this idea. I made an I SPY quilt for my grandsons; I'd like to make this for my granddaughters. Thanks for the great tutorial!
  14. monica
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Finally! I know what to do with all the I-Spy blocks I got from a swap about a year ago. This one is going on my to-do list for sure, and I would love to see pics of books from others that have been sewn.
  15. Suzanne
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    While I'm familiar with I Spy quilts, this is the first I've ever heard of an I spy book. Such a great idea and well written tutorial.
  16. Caitlin
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Thanks so much for posting this! I have tons of fabric, and I made this in one night. This is a must have for our church bag!!
  17. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Cute! My kids would enjoy looking through this and it's great for bubs too.
  18. victoria
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    SO sweet. I'm thinking I'll be needing one for plane trip with a 2 year old next month. THANKS!
  19. Kaylynne
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Perfect for my two year old granddaughter!!! Now to find the best fabric scraps. Ohhh, soooo many projects I am working on!!! I am still trying to finish the "Special Message Hot Pads" for my sisters and daugther. I am so excited to find so many great gift ideas to make. I hope you will keep all these ideas accessible this year at least, if not for next year too. I am running out of time already. =) Thanks a bunch!
  20. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    This is the cutest idea! I have a new baby cousin on the way and this is just a perfect gift for her. Thanks for sharing.
  21. Adriana
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Excuse me, but where do you buy those marvellous fabrics? i'm from Spain and i'd like to make some faboulous things like you. i admire you,truly. Please,mail me with an answer! Kisses!
  22. Heidi
    Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    going to make these for xmas gifts for some of the teacher's in my children's school! luv it!
  23. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    This is wonderful!
  24. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    That's it! I'm learning to sew. I need to make this :) Wonderful idea!

  25. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    Oh my gosh, this is darling. Going to go raid my I Spy fabrics. So much for laundry!
  26. Saturday, September 17th, 2011
    This is great! I think it would even be a wonderful present for a baby shower.