In pre-colonial days, clothing worn by the Powhatans and other Native American people typically didn’t feature the type of pockets sewn into European garments. Instead, decorative pouches and bags were used to carry all sorts of personal belongings, including food, medicine, and tools. This no-sew, fringed drawstring pouch is just the right size for toting small toys, trinkets, or snacks.

Time: 1 hour

What You’ll Need

  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Tan or beige felt
  • Hot glue or tacky glue
  • 1 small bag
  • Pony beads
  • Cotton yarn or embroidery floss

How To Make It

  1. Cut out the following pieces from the felt: two 7 1/2- by 5 1/2-inch rectangles, one 4 1/2-inch square, and four 1- by 3/4-inch rectangles.
  2. Place the felt square atop one of the larger rectangles, matching up the bottoms and gluing the very lower edges together, as shown.
  3. Cover the glued pieces with the second larger rectangle. Glue the side and bottom edges together but leave the top edges unglued.
  4. Now invert the purse so the seams are on the inside and the felt square extends from the bottom. Cut fringe (3/8-inch wide) in the felt square. Thread beads onto the fringe (you can use a toothpick to help push the felt through the holes) and secure them in place with small dabs of glue.
  5. Next, use the smaller felt rectangles to create channels for the drawstrings. Position them an inch in from the purse sides and about 3/8 inch down from the top, two on the front of the purse and two on the back. Glue down the upper and lower edges only, leaving the centers unglued.
  6. Cut two 20-inch lengths of yarn or embroidery floss. Thread one of them through the channels from the right side of the purse, and the other from the left, as shown. Thread beads onto the drawstring ends and then knot the yarn or floss below the beads to keep them from slipping off. To cinch the purse, simply pull the drawstrings in opposite directions.


Cutting and gluing should be done by an adult.

Posted 7 years Ago
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