Instructables
Picture of Make a Custom Lift-the-Flap Book for a Toddler
I provide childcare in my home for three toddlers and I've noticed that they really love board books with flaps that open. So for Christmas I made three customized lift-the-flap books for them. This instructable will explain how to make your own and give some tips on how to make the process a little easier.
 
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Step 1: Edit photos

house-bottom-layer.jpg
house-merged-layers.jpg
Before assembling the book you need to create two prints for each page. During step 2 you will cut through the top layer to make a flap which will reveal someone (or something) on the layer underneath. This is easiest to do with a photo editing program that supports multiple layers. (Photoshop Elements 2.0 worked fine for me.)

Note that I only printed the first two images. The second two are just to help explain how to use multiple layers for alignment. I found it helpful to cut the windows out of the top layer and place them on a separate layer in Photoshop. That way I could hide the layer with the windows temporarily while I dropped my images of mom, dad, Elie, and the squirrel onto a layer under the top layer for scaling. Since the windows are cut out and hidden you will be able to see the people through the openings and scale them to fit. Then you can turn the layer with the windows and doors on and off to test the flaps.

Once you have made the two layers for each page and a front and back cover you can print out all your prints either at home if you have a photo printer or at your local print shop. (I printed mine over the internet to the one hour photo center at Walmart.) I would recommend a matte finish which won't show fingerprints as quickly as glossy.
ecsaul231 year ago
sweet!!!
leeski5 years ago
 Awesome Idea.  I'd love to make one of San Francisco for my kids who love board books....
dude i was thinking the same things i liv in the mission , cool to have my lil ones bear hiding on the bridge ...
bazookaromz4 years ago
 wow! such an awesome instructable!
threadbare5 years ago
What a great idea! This would make a great gift!
jencroswell5 years ago
This is great! I'm planning on making one of me hiding in or behind different toys and things that belong to my daughter to encourage her to call me mama.
annaram5 years ago
That was way cool! I'll definitely have to make some of these to add to all the other great toddler books I've got! I'm probably not going to be as successful as the ones outlined here, but it looks like a fun project to do with the kids.
susanelm5 years ago
This is simply fabulous! I love Photoshop and also my new nephew, Max. Now I have an awesome way to bring the two loves together. By the time I complete this project, Max will be just at the right age for his very own first book. Thanks for the wonderfully concise instructions!
SteveGerber (author)  susanelm5 years ago
Thanks for the compliment, I hope you will share a few pictures of your project when your book is completed. :)
ediecago6 years ago
Love it!!!! There are blank board books for sale on internet. I got some on a reading instruction website. Probably couldn't/shouldn't mention website name if I remembered it or looked it up. Set came with sticker sheets the size of the books to print pages - then stick them on. I added a mirror to one page with same idea as the cutout of the flaps -- putting a mirror in the cutout part. I'd post it, but gave the book away. Be sure to get UNBREAKABLE mirror. I got metal one at science supply store. Since it's framed out, plastic would likely be ok too (toxicity not a problem, kid will chew edges of book not the mirror itself). Speaking of toxicity, folks- consider using white glue and other less-toxic stuff. The really great graphics spray adhesive has GOT to be bad for little people who will chew on the books.
nerdmom9206 years ago
Ok, I am marking this as a project for Christmas. Great instructable
maneshcs6 years ago
nice and cool
sprogmom6 years ago
This si so beautifully done! What a wonderful idea. I know my girls would love this, especially my 1 yr old who is beginning to really explore books. Thank you for this instructable!
degroof6 years ago
Nice. I'd been meaning to do something like this but never got around to it. As far as how to make a board book from scratch, have a look at this:
http://degroof.home.mindspring.com/boardbook/boardbook.html

One of these days, I'll get around to making that into an Instructable.
That was an awesome instructable. Great Job! Now I want to go out a purchase photoshop.
SteveGerber (author)  Robotic_mage6 years ago
Thanks! Unless you are a professional graphic designer I would recommend just buying Photoshop Elements. I'm still using version 2.0 and It's met my needs as an amateur photographer very well.
Just use GIMP - its free and easy
Try Paint.NET. One review says, "It's the free equivalent of Photoshop!"
inquisitive6 years ago
Beautiful! I have done this on scrapbooks, but will have to make one of these as a card for a friend's birthday. Maybe a title of "Oh Where Have the Years Gone?".
Great instructable, can't wait to make one for my kids!
I agree with everybody, this is an AWESOME Instructable, the pictures are great, and the steps are very easy to follow too, great job.
Brennn106 years ago
Very well made Instructable, with very good directions.
Dave A6 years ago
nice, i´ll defintely will make one for my son!
Very nice!