How to Make Beaded Purses

Funky Foam Purse
Make sure your blue craft foam is sized correctly.
Make sure your blue craft foam is sized correctly.

In this last section of our how to make beaded purses project, we will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to create a funky foam purse. Just gather the materials on the list below to get started. Once your creation is complete, you'll see just how versatile this funky bag can be!

What You'll Need:

12X18 inches blue craft foam




Tracing paper

1/8-inch hole punch

5 feet blue plastic lacing

32 matching pony beads

9x6 inches multicolor adhesive craft foam

Adhesive-back hook and loop dots

Step 1: Along the shorter edge of the blue foam, measure and mark 2 strips 1-1/4-inches wide (for the strap) and 1 strip 2-1/2 inches wide. Cut out the strips. Using the pattern on page 30, trace and cut out 2 side panels from the 2-1/2-inch-wide strip (copy the pattern markings).

It takes a steady hand to punch perfect holes, so take it slow.

The remaining foam piece should measure about 7 inches wide. This will be for the pouch of the purse. Round the corners of the pouch piece on one side.

Step 2: Starting 1/4-inch from the squared edge of the pouch piece, measure and mark 26 points 1/2-inch apart and 1/4-inch in from the side edge. Repeat on the other side. Punch holes at all points on all the pieces, including the side panels.

Step 3: Cut a 36-inch length of plastic lacing. Line up the square edge of one side panel with one edge of the pouch piece. Thread the lacing through the first holes of each section, and leave a 10-inch tail on the side panel side.

Continue lacing through the matching holes, using a basic sewing stitch, until all the holes are used. Be sure to keep the edges even and leave a 10-inch tail. Repeat on the other side.

Test your stitching skills as you lace through the holes on your funky foam purse.

Step 4: Thread each tail through the top 2 holes on the side panel (the lace ends should end up on the outside of the side panel). Position one end of a strap piece over the holes at the top of a side panel.

Use a pencil to mark points through the punched holes of the side panel to help you punch holes on the strap. Thread one lace end through the top hole on the strap, then thread the same lace diagonally to the bottom hole on the strap. Repeat with the other lace end (lace should have formed an X).

Thread the lace ends through the opposite bottom strap holes. Tie the ends in a knot. Thread 3 pony beads on the remaining lacing, and tie a double knot on each end to hold the beads in place. Trim excess lacing. Repeat on the other side.

Step 5: Overlap the straps to desired length to fit over your shoulder. Holding the strap pieces in place, punch 4 holes in a square about 1/2 inch apart and about 1/4 inch from the edges of the straps.

Cut a 12-inch length of lacing, then thread the lacing down through one bottom hole and up through the other bottom hole. Bring the ends together evenly, cross the lace ends to form an X, then thread them down through the top holes.

This lacing technique creates a cool pattern.

Lace each end back up through the bottom holes, then tie a knot to hold in place. Thread 2 pony beads on each end of the lacing, and tie a double knot on each end to hold the beads in place. Trim excess lacing. Repeat on the other overlapped section of the strap.

Step 6: Trace and cut out 3 flowers from the multicolor craft foam using the pattern on this page. Copy all markings, and punch holes at the points. Using 4 inches of lacing for each flower, thread the length of lacing through the holes, then tie a knot.

Thread 2 pony beads on each end of the lacing, and tie a double knot at each end to hold the beads in place. Remove paper backing and stick the flowers to desired locations on the purse. Remove the paper backing from the loop dots and place them under the purse flap.

Your funky foam purse is ready to rock and roll!

Press the hook dots on the loop dots, then remove the backing from the hook dots and attach them to the front of the purse.

For more fun crafts and activities for kids, see:


Lip-smacking Sweet Beaded Purse by the Editors of Publications International, Ltd.