Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Beaded Doll Purses!

Dolly friends, I have a confession to make. Yesterday I stayed up until 6 in the morning, working on a new project. If you guessed that the project was two shiny new handbags of the beaded variety, you're either psychic... or skilled at reading titles. Either way, here they are!

If you follow my Saturday Sequins blog, you know that I'm a beader. I started out making jewelry for people, but recently I've been interested in making things for my dolls, including the beaded bag I shared in this post.

Lately I've been focusing more on sewing and re-rooting, but the beading bug bit me a few days ago when I saw the gorgeous statement necklace the Fashion Doll Stylist made for her dolls. I wanted to make a necklace of my own, but then I remembered that beaded bag. I looked at the book shelf across the room from me and noticed that there were two beaded rings right at my eye level. Two rings that couldn't be worn, because while they were pretty, they were also huge. Uncle John couldn't even wear one as a thumb ring.

Just like a ring is a tube, a bag is a longer tube with the bottom edges stitched together. So I added a few rows of beads to each side, added some handles, and by the time the sun came up, I was exhaustedly weaving the remaining thread tails into the beadwork. And then I fell asleep until sometime in the afternoon.

When I woke up, one of the first things I did after gasping at the clock in horror was look in my doll room for the right clothing and models. Here are Melina and Mara, holding their new accessories and excitedly planning a new set of beaded goodies. If they have their way, there will be many, many more in our future.

"I love this zigzag pattern," says Mara. "I want a belt to match. And a bracelet, and a necklace, and an anklet, and...."

"Look at all the space on those shelves," says Melina. "I think there's room for a boutique! We'll put some purses over there, and over there, and over there. Beaded belts will go over here. And what do you think about beaded hat bands? Does Mom make hats?"

"She can learn," says Mara. Both of them burst into maniacal laughter.

Oh, those girls! So spoiled, but so cute, which is why they get away with it. Both are sporting new hair, since both came with heads full of glue and are founding members of Glueheads Anonymous. Mara has some maroon highlights in her dark brown hair, and we're thinking of giving her a boil perm as soon as I perfect my technique. I like Melina's hair just the way it is.

Melina is wearing a pair of the pants I made. Stretch velvet leopard print, made from material I had in my collection for so long that it's practically vintage. She's also wearing a felt shirt I made by loosely following this post by Almost Unschoolers -- one of the first shirts I've ever made.

Mara is wearing a dress I made out of hand-painted fabric. If you're interested in painting your own fabric for doll clothes, I go into a little detail in this blog post. I also added some sparkly fabric paint after the dress was sewn. It makes the fabric a little stiff, but... sparkles. Enough said.

I may not actually bead enough bags for a boutique, and Uncle John's books probably wouldn't appreciate the dolls moving in on their territory, but I will definitely make more. As I type this, I have my supplies out, and I have an idea for an even crazier bag. I might even try a different beading stitch. I'll keep you all updated.

Much love,

Sarah J Sequins

(And dolls)


  1. The clothes are really nice but the purses are FANTASTIC! I am quite impressed.

    1. Thank you so much! I really had fun with them, and I'm excited that I can share my beading with my dolls. <3

  2. Nice work! I'm not surprised that the girls want more. I also admire your re-rooting skills.

  3. Muff is right. Your beaded purses are awesome!!!