Tuesday, September 30, 2014

DIY Pup-Purse Tutorial

Hi there! If you find this, or another of my
tutorials helpful and would like to make a monetary contribution 
to help me keep my woolie ideas flowing, I would be most grateful.
By clicking the "Buy Now" button below you can 
choose your own price for the tutorial. 
It's completely optional, but so appreciated! 

Howdy! I'm so glad you are here. Welcome to a super fun and easy project from the "world of cutes" desk over here at Val's Art Studio! 

This purse project is pretty simple to complete, and you can work on with your favorite little seamstress wanna-be. It took me about 2 hours to make up this project, from start to finish.

Here's what you will need to make up this sweet Pup-Purse:
  • An old wool sweater that has holes in it, and you love it too much to throw it away. Before beginning this project, throw that sweater in the washer and dryer, to shrink it up, fluff the fibers and make it nice and soft.
  • Small bits of felt in a variety of colors, OR needle felting tools and a mixture of colored roving (provided you are a needle felter, and know what you are doing. If not, stick with the bits of felt.)
  • Thick black embroidery thread
  • A small scrap of cotton fabric for the lining, approximately 8 x 10"
  • A sewing machine (for best results - if you don't have a sewing machine, you can hand sew this up)
  • Needle and thread
  • Scissors
  • Fabric glue
  • Fusible interfacing (optional) to stiffen up the sweater fabric
  • 1 snap
  • Purse strap, approximately 24" long.

Ok, let's begin!

1. Click on the pattern photo and print it out. The actual pattern should be 7" tall x 8.5" wide, however, you are welcome to increase or decrease the size to make a purse that is a different size from the one I made. Yes, that is allowed :o)

2. Cut out the sweater fabric according to the pattern. Attach the fusible interfacing to the back (optional). Do not cut out the cotton lining fabric yet.

3. Cut out small pieces of the felt and use the fabric glue to attach the eyes, nose, cheeks, and tail to the sweater fabric, using the pattern for a guide. Alternately, and if you are a needle felter, needle felt the details in place according to the pattern guides.

4. Using embroidery thread, sew the pup's mouth. Sew an "X" over the tail.

5. Pin the sweater fabric evenly along the top edge of the lining fabric, as pictured: (Make sure you pin the top of each fabric together. This will make sense once the lining fabric is put in it's proper place.)

6. Sew the sweater fabric to the lining. Sew again 1/4" away from the first sewing seam to make sure the two are attached securely. 

7. Fold the two fabrics evenly in the middle, so the lining fabric is back to back with the sweater. Then, fold it in half again so the dog face is on the front and the tail is on the back. Make sure the lining fabric is nestled in close to the sweater fabric (you can pin them together at the fold). If there is excess lining fabric, cut it away approximately 1/4" beyond the edge of the sweater fabric.

8. Trim the lining fabric around the corners to match the curves of the sweater fabric.

9. Next, unfold the piece so it is flat. Then fold the entire piece in half lengthwise with the RIGHT SIDES facing each other, and pin the edges together carefully.

10. Sew the outside seam together along the cut fabric edge, leaving a 3" wide opening on the side of the lining so you can turn the entire purse inside out. Please notice where my fingers are in the following photo- that's where you DON'T want to sew. Also, you will NOT sew along the foldover edge.

11. Clip the curves so the fabric doesn't pull in the corners once it's been turned inside out. 

12. Now turn your pup inside out, starting in the corners and pulling the fabric through the unsewn hole so the right side is now facing out. This step is always so exciting!

13. Hand sew the two sides of the lining fabric together where you turned the piece inside out.

14. Now push the lining fabric down into the purse. Remember that approximately 1" of the top of the sweater will be folded over into the inside of the purse.

15. Cut out the ears according to the pattern. My ears were cut from felted sweater fabric. I applied a small line of fabric glue to the edges so there is no chance the fabric will unravel. Let the glue dry before moving forward.

16. Determine where you will sew the ears in place. Using embroidery thread, sew the ears down. Start and end the thread behind the ears.

17. Next, you will mark the placement of the strap. My strap came with "D" rings. I attached the D rings to the inside top edge of the purse.

18. Sew a snap inside the top of the purse to keep treasures from falling out  :o)

Admire the cuteness. Yes, so, SO cute!

And that tail on the back... Woot!!!!

Oh my heck! It's just the right size for my cell phone. I am in love!!!

Thank you for taking the time to sew and felt along with me! I would LOVE to see your Pup-Purse, and hope you will leave me a link in the comments so I can scoot over to your "show off spot" and check it out! If you're on Instagram, use the hashtag #pupurse.

For more needle felt fun and goodness, I invite you to subscribe to my blog. And, I would love for you to visit my website here. Also, if you want to learn more about needle felting (Super FUN in store for YOU!), please click here to learn more about my upcoming e-course: Hello Felt! 

Thanks for visiting!


PS. If you are in love with that orange lining fabric (who can blame you?!), here is the link where you can find it: here. All you need to order is a Fat Quarter to make up this project.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014



WARNING: This post contains an overabundance of Cuteness. So, don't say you weren't warned ahead of time!

Today, at noon, I learned a trip my husband and I were scheduled to take would be cancelled. Woop!! Free time! So, I quickly finished what I was doing, ... But, hold on! Some fabrics and feltie scraps called out to me. Here's what went down...

Scraps coming together and taking shape. Add some stitches. A bit of drawing on fabric...

A quick trip through the sewing machine, and he is all stitched up!

Golly, he just NEEDED a bow tie!

He's got attitude. He's a Dude!

Yup. He's killing me!

Thanks for visiting. It's all Dudaliscious over here :o)


Friday, September 19, 2014


Hi there! Can you believe it's already almost late September, and time to get ready for some Fall-ish-ness?! My, how time flies... 

There has been a little bit of Halloween crafting going on in my studio this week. So I thought I'd share it with you...

Mr. Hoot will be an upcoming needle felting class. 

These two silly ones have just come upon each other. eek!

These funky pumpkins will become brooches. The one on the right is Picasso Pumpkin :o)

I love making fun vignettes.

That's it for now. Oh, wait! I will just leave you with a quick selfie...



Thursday, September 4, 2014

Whew! I survived August!

It was such a busy August that it went by in a big, huge blur! Oh my golly! I thought I would give you a quick recap of just the highlights....

1. The Oz Show was pretty quiet, as we actually had a RAINY DAY. Oh my! But, in between the sprinkles, we had lots of fun. 

I created a piece of art specifically for the show. It has been a big seller in my local shop since then! You can find it in my Etsy shop here.

2. First Thursdays at the Headquarters was a super fun event. The show organizers have decided to run the show monthly, I believe. I will not be there on the First Thurs in September, but expect to find me in the months leading up to year end!

3. Bright and early the next morning, my son, Kyle, and I took off for a day at Disneyland! Squeee!

THEN: (4 years old)

NOW: (16 years old)

My son has always been a big fan of the ladies! I was the only one in our group willing to wait with Kyle in the 30 minute line to meet the Princesses. My sister and nieces grumbled that it was a waste of time, but when we got in and talked "Princess talk" with them, we all had such a great time. Everyone later agreed it was the highlight of our day!

What a great Disneyland day!!!!!

4. I entered the GTS. Read more here. I did not make the short list. Oh well, but it's all good. I have a great new piece of art!

5. I taught the Fantastic Mr. Fox needle felting class, and we had SOOO much fun! Look at the cuties made by my students! Thanks to all who came, and put their best foot... err- fingers forward in learning my craft! 

6. Filming goes on for my e-course, Hello Felt, even as we had to say good bye to sweet Sophia, my intern of the past 1.5 years. She is off on a big adventure to Indonesia. My new intern, Jen, is going to help me pick up where Sophia and I left off. We are pressing on....! Find out more and sign up for the interest list by clicking here and scrolling down to the bottom of the page. Oh... and check out the Bloopers video. It's super cute!

7. We flew off to Lake Tahoe for a family vacation. We rented a cabin, took the Gondola up to Heavenly, spent lots of time hiking, went wading in the Lake, ate lots of good food, and made great family memories!

We hiked all the way into "Desolation Wilderness"! The hike out was long and uphill. Even though the way back was a mix of downhill and flats, we were absolutely dogggg tired by the end. Good thing our cabin had a sweet jacuzzi!

8. I wrapped up the end of the month with a FOUR DAY SHOW: the US Sand Sculpting Challenge and 3-D Art Show. Thanks to all of you who came out to see us.. Ok, see the Sand Sculptures (Lol) but see US too, right??!!

This one was my favorite. It stands about 10 feet tall:

Also, at the show, it was reinforced that my Plushies still manage to attract everyone; kids, their mother, brother, uncle and aunt to my booth. So, winning the most popularity contest are the ever-loving Toast, Teeth and Sushi pillows. Congratulations, guys!

9. And then, I had my BIRTHDAY on the very last day of the month. I am 55 now! Wow!

10. Finally, AND my biggest accomplishment this month: I am celebrating finishing working the Twelve Steps!!! I have been joined together with a beautiful group of women, who share a similar spiritual path as myself. We have been working the Spiritually based Al-Anon Twelve Steps since March. It has been hard, tearful, the best goodness possible, and life changing. What an amazing accomplishment! I highly recommend this for anyone facing life challenges who are feeling "stuck".

Wow! It's probably been the most action packed month of my life. But it's all good!! Most importantly: I survived it all, and came out all the better at the end of the month in so many ways.  =^_^=