Recycled Sweater Purse

sweater purseI did finish my sweater purse. Actually, I finished it a couple of weeks ago and am finally getting around to posting it. It is not my best sewing example, but I still like how it turned out. I used two sweaters – one red and one gray. And the lining was some cherry fabric by Michael Miller that I had leftover from an apron I made last year. Both of the sweaters I used were wool, so I felted them in the washer and dryer. Felting the sweaters helps add some texture and strength to the wool. It is easy to do – just wash them in hot water and dry in the dryer. Repeat this process until you can no longer detect the weave in your sweater.

I’ve been using my purse daily since I finished it and it is holding up nicely. I’ve also gotten a lot of complements on it, even if it’s not my best sewing example. I do like the purse though. It is big and roomy, so I can carry all the stuff I need to take with me when I go out – even a textbook fits inside for the days when I need to study in my spare time. The only thing I am not happy with are the handles. I didn’t have anything else on-hand at the time, so I used what I had. I might change them out in the near future for circle handles. I think circles might be easier to carry. The shape that is on there now keeps getting tangled and they just don’t function properly.

I kind of just made this purse up as I went along. And I didn’t write a tutorial because there are hundreds of them on the Web already. I did however, compile a list of some of the best ones I found for you to browse for inspiration.

Janome – Recycled Sweater Purse

Recycled Sweater Coin Purse by Maize Hutton

How to Make a Felted Tote from a Recycled Sweater

Girl’s Spring Mini-Tote

And you can download a free pattern at And while you are over there, be sure to check my ePatterns – on how to make clothing from recycled ties and denim.

Have fun and happy upcycling!


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