________________ CM . . . . Volume V Number 21 . . . . June 18, 1999

cover Sew Your Own Bean Bag Friends: Everything You Need But the Beans.

Jill Bryant. Illustrated by chum mcleod.
Toronto, ON: Somerville House Books Ltd., 1998.
40 pp., pbk., $17.95.
ISBN 1-894042-20-4.

Subject Headings:
Soft toy making-Technique.
Stuffed animals (Toys).

Grades 3-7 / Ages 8-12.
Review by Lorraine Douglas.

**** /4


Pins with colored heads are the easiest to use. The colors make them easy to see. Pins are used to hold the pieces of fabric before you sew them together. Always keep your pins in a pincushion when you aren't using them.

Hint: Insert pins into the wrong side of the fabric to avoid pricking your finger. If you put them on the velour side, you might lose them in the soft, furry fabric.

inside picture This appealing kit would make a great gift item for a child over the age of eight who wants to learn the basics of sewing. An instruction book and all the supplies (except for the beans or the fiberfill stuffing) are presented in a boxed package. The instructional book demonstrates through clear step-by-step instructions and attractive drawings how to create three bean bag creatures. A child can choose from among a fish, a frog and a bear. The directions explain how to lay out and cut out the enclosed pattern pieces, how to hand sew and stuff the creatures and how to have more fun with the projects. These ideas include dressing up the creatures with accessories and giving them as gifts along with the enclosed "birth certificates." More supplies for making the creatures can be ordered from the publishers, but the book gives good suggestions on purchasing suitable supplies from fabric and craft stores.

      Although this item is not suitable for library use, teachers could find the patterns useful for middle school use as a creative class project. The funky purple illustrations of kids in the instructional guide have the added bonus of including both boys and girls making these cute creatures.

Highly Recommended.

Lorraine Douglas is the Youth Services Coordinator at the Winnipeg Public Library.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364