Felt ABC Mat

Just this once, I'm skipping my weekly Wednesday's Wowzers.  Consider yesterday's roundup of gratitude projects my wowzers!  Instead, I wanted to share the ABC mat I shared at Brown Paper Packages a few months back.

Alright, my friends.

As far as I'm concerned, this is go-time for Christmas.  This year, my husband and I are saving up to buy our very own home!  So I am attempting to create a more meaningful, handmade Christmas this year.  I am hoping that I can whip up some fun handmade gifts for Little Man and Mr. Oopsey Daisy (although I must say that the hubs is much more difficult to create gifts for!)

A while back, I created this ABC mat to help Little Man practice his ABC's.

Even though I created this months ago, wouldn't this make a fun handmade gift?

We are enjoying our ABC mat so much!

In fact, Little Man begs to get it out each and every day.  We play all kinds of games so that he can stretch, run, hop, and jump all over the alphabet!  (Think hopscotch mat for ABC's!)

I whipped up this ABC mat in one afternoon.  Want to make your very own?

Let's get started!

Last year, I made a quiet book, and I still have plenty of felt to go around!  So I picked out some of my favorite colors to highlight each letter.

I wanted the mat to be bright and colorful.

 

I purchased 2 yards of turquoise felt on sale at JoAnn's.  I cut out a large rectangle that was approximately 43" x 73".

This would be the main base of the mat.

 

To cut out the circles, I traced several tupperware lids that were all different sizes.  I used disappearing ink to trace them.  I wanted a variety of colors and sizes to make it interesting.

 

Here is my stack of 26 circles (one for each letter of the alphabet), ready to go!

I wanted to space out all of the circles in an interesting way, so I pinned them roughly where I wanted them before sewing.  I was also careful not to pin them too close to the edge so I could add a border later on.

Then I got to work sewing all those circles on!  It became a little cumbersome to sew circles in the middle of a lot of fabric.  I was careful not to let the felt bunch up as I was sewing along!

I love polk-a-dots!  So I hot glued this polk-a-dot ribbon as a border all the way around the entire mat.

 

Now for the letters!!

I cut the letters out of fabric using my Cricut.  To make the cutting process easier, I had already ironed on Heat 'N Bond and peeled away the paper layer.

 

Then I ironed each letter on a circle.  Because I had already ironed on the Heat 'N Bond, they ironed on very easily.  I was sure to spend plenty of time ironing the letters on.  I wanted these to stand the test of time!

I really love that I didn't have to sew these on.  They have held up just beautifully!

And that's it!  Fold it up, roll it up like a sleeping bag, and you can store it away and pull it out for special occasions.

Here are a few ways that we have used our ABC mat:

* Ask your child to find a letter and perform an action.  (Hop on the letter "J")

* Ask your child to put a different body part on a specific letter.  This ends up looking a lot like Twister! (Put your nose on the letter "N")

* Play a "Simon Says" game.  (Simon says to hop to the letter "B")

* Play music and let your child hop from letter to letter to the music.  Stop the music and ask child to identify what letter he/she is standing on.

* For more advanced children, hop from letter to letter to spell out entire words.

Little Man loved playing, and putting his hand/foot/nose, etc. on different letters!  Here he is with his ear on the Letter J!

TIP:  If you prefer a no-sew version of this project, no problem!  I used a shower curtain liner as a teacher.  I drew the letters and circles on the mat with a sharpie.  The children in my class could slip off their shoes and spell out their spelling words on this spelling "mat."  It was one of their favorite activities.

 

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like my felt car mat.

What are you up to this week?

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Comments

  1. Savannah says:

    What a great idea! Pinned it to Pinterest to try later. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love this project, Alison! My little guy loves to spell his name, and this visual would be perfect for him.

  3. Lyndsey says:

    What a cute idea!! My little one would love this- you are so creative!!

  4. Savanna says:

    What is your secret for cutting fabric with your cricut? I have tried several times and it always bunches or snags. Please do tell!

  5. Lauren says:

    This is wonderful. I think even I can handle making one!

    I’d love for you to link up and share: http://tutusandteaparties.blogspot.com/2011/10/pinteresting-linky-party-week-eleven.html

  6. Alison this is so super cute!! I love the idea and how colorful it is!! It would make a great gift – or be awesome for a classroom!!

  7. Kiana says:

    I love this! Adding this to my list of stuff to make for Christmas!!

  8. OH MY GOODNESS!!!!! I have the exact same sewing machine! I really thought that I was alone in this world. Thanks for sharing your fun project AND your awesome machine! :)

  9. Such a creative, beautiful and fun way to teach a little one their ABCs!

  10. This is an awesome idea. I need to make one for my little boy to help him learn his letters. We would love for you to link this up to our linky party going on right now.
    http://junkintheirtrunk.blogspot.com/2011/11/link-it-up-wednesday.html
    Tenille
    junkintheirtrunk.blogspot.com

  11. Heather says:

    I love this and think it would make a great gift for some relatives and friends!

  12. I *love* this Alison! I love that it isn’t a gender-specific activity that can be passed down and used for kids of all ages and stages!

  13. Missy says:

    I love this idea, unfortunately I dont have a cricut!

  14. Lolly Jane says:

    so cute, amanda! xoxo

  15. Lolly Jane says:

    LOL! i meant so cute ALISON! was thinkin amanda cuz i saw this craft on AMANDA’s new link party! ;)

  16. Darling my dear! I meant to comment on this earlier but this week has been crazy! I need one of these for my little man to learn his ABC’s! Thanks for linking up!

    ps. the lolly Jane girls are funny!

  17. Bonnie Dangerfield Tanner says:

    Alison, you are seriously so awesome! I would have loved to have been in your class. I love this idea! My daughter just turned one. . .when did you start teaching your son things, I mean ABC’s etc.? I can’t even get my daughter to sit and let me read her a story :0) Thanks for sharing your talents!

    Bonnie

  18. I love this!!! I can’t wait to try it! (And that in itself is a feat, since I am not sure my sewing skills are up to doing 26 circles, but this project is so amazing, I am giving it a shot!) Thanks for sharing it!

  19. nicole says:

    great idea, i need to make one for my nephew! i’m stopping by from tatertots and jello and would love for you to stop by my blog and checkout the huge giveaway going on. http://thelovelypoppy.blogspot.com/2011/10/blog-follower-giveaway.html xoxo nicole

  20. I love how colorful this mat is.

  21. Lauren K says:

    I love this! I’m a sucker for educational/ABC projects! :)

  22. holly ll says:

    That is perfect – useful and cute!

  23. Edith says:

    This is such a great idea. I think I am going to try to do this for my son.

  24. Meghan says:

    I want to make this project for my nephews but don’t have a cricut. How else can I do the letters? I do have a sewing machine. Please let me know! Thanks!

  25. What a great idea!! I’m not sure I’d have the patience to sew on all the circles though. But I can definitely see shower curtain mats in my future! :) Pinning for later!
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  1. [...] a little more crafty, I borrowed an idea from Oopsy Daisy’s blog, her alphabet mat.  Now Allison, the blogger mom at Oopsy Daisy, actually cut out fabric letters, and sewed each [...]

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