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How to make a felted Anteater purse.

Anteater 041

I love making stuff from felted wool that I make from old sweaters. I kind of got carried away and collected about 50 sweaters that are waiting to be turned into something- someday.But back to this project. I will show you how to make your very own anteater purse. I made this one for my daughter who used to always sing along with the song, “Maneater” but she would sing, “Anteater” So I can’t help but think of her when I see an anteater even though she’s grown up now with three kids of her own. But first you have to learn how to felt sweaters.
How to felt the sweaters:

  1. Throw in the wash with hot water and soap.
  2. Throw in dryer on high

Ta-Da! Felted wool.Which is wonderful material to work with because it doesn’t ravel and really hides the stiches.

*TIP* Don’t put different colors together or you may get some pink sweater into your grey sweater.

Now for the instructions for making this adorable felted possum purse.

skill level

 

 

 

This project is easy for adults or teens who know how to:

  • thread a needle
  • cut with scissors
  • Sew by hand or machine a straight closing stitch
  • throw sweaters into a washer machine and then into the dryer

supplies needed

  • Matching thread
  • Red zipper ( I like using metal zippers because they look more like teeth)
  • 2 Black shiny rounded buttons for eyes
  • Old grey sweater (felted, that means washed and dried to shrink it)
  • Small length of pink sweater felted for tongue or a piece of store bought pink felt
  • White felt or a felted white sweater for claws and eyes.
  • Long piece of ribbon for the strap

tools needed

  • Scissors
  • needle or sewing machine
  • straight pins
  • washing machine
  • dryer

instructions

Step#1    Cut 2 grey felted rectangles (6 x 12 inches) for the body of the anteater.

Step#1    Cut 2 grey felted rectangles for the body of the anteater.

Step#2    Cut 2 inches down from the top of the front rectangle.
Cut all the way across to make the slit where the zipper mouth will go.

STEP#2   Cut 2 rectangles from the felted sweater. 6 x 12inches or what ever size you want. The rectangle that you decide is the front must be cut apart 2 inches from the top.

STEP#3  Folding under the raw edges and pinning the zipper down before you sew it in place.
This is the mouth and opening for the purse.

Folding under the raw edges and pinning the zipper down before you sew it in place. This is the mouth and opening for the purse.

STEP#4   Sew a couple of loop overs at the end of the zipper,
so the zipper won’t run right off the track when you open it.

Sew a couple of loop overs at the end of the zipper so the zipper won't run right off the track when you open it.

STEP#5 Cut a small rectangle for the bottom of the purse. 10 x 2 inches.
And also cut a piece of cardboard to stiffen up the bottom.
Put the cardboard on the felt, fold the felt in half and sew the edges.

Cut a small rectangle for the bottom of the purse. 10 x 2 inches. And also cut a piece of cardboard to stiffen up the bottom. Put the cardboard on the felt, fold the felt in half and sew the edges.

STEP#6 Sewing the edge of the purse bottom

Sewing the edge of the purse bottom

STEP#7 The bottom all sewn up

The bottom all sewn up.

STEP#8 Draw yourself a little rounded “u” shape from paper
about 3 inches long and 1.5 inches wide
to use for a pattern for the legs. 
Cut out 8 of these from the grey felt.

Draw yourself a little rounded "u" shape from paper about 3 inches long and 1.5 inches wide to use for a pattern for the legs. Cut out 8 of these from the grey felt.

STEP#9 Make a little paper pattern so the claws kind of stay uniform.

STEP#9 Make a little paper pattern so the claws kind of stay uniform.

STEP#10 Cut out 12 little claws from the white felt.

STEP#10 Cut out 12 little claws from the white felt.

STEP#11 Separate the claws into groups of three for each leg.

STEP#11 Separate the claws into groups of three for each leg.

STEP#12 Arrange the claws inside the leg and sew up the edge ,
make sure you catch the claws in your stitches.

STEP#12 Arrange the claws inside the leg and sew up the edge , make sure you catch the claws in your stitches.

STEP# 13 Turn right side out and admire your beautiful leg.
But not too long because you have 3 more to sew.

STEP# 13 Turn right side out and admire your beautiful leg. But not too long because you have 3 more to sew.

There they are, 4 little legs all ready to sew on to the body.

 There they are, 4 little legs all ready to sew to the body.

STEP#14 Line up the legs on the bottom and along the sides and pin into place.

STEP#14 Line up the legs on the bottom and along the sides and pin into place

STEP#15     Carefully place the front and back together with the right sides together
and the legs all tucked inside. Pin the edges together and added the bottom piece.
Now sew along all the edges to form the body/ bag.

STEP#15 Carefully place the front and back together with the right sides together and the legs all tucked inside. Pin the edges together and added the bottom piece. Now sew along all the edges to form the body/ bag.

Here’s what it should look like now once you turn it right side out.

Here's what it should look like now once you turn it right side out.

STEP#14 Cut a piece from the sleeve of the sweater about 12 inches long.
This is going to be the face and nose. Which forms the flap of the purse.

STEP#14 Cut a piece from the sleeve of the sweater about 12 inches long. This is going to be the face and nose. Which forms the flap of the purse.

STEP#15 Sew the edges together to form a tube which is the nose of the anteater.
Tack in a long piece of pink felt for the tongue.

STEP#15 Sew the edges together to form a tube which is the nose of the anteater. Tack in a long piece of pink felt for the tongue.

STEP#16    Sew the piece to the top of the body.

STEP#16    Sew the piece to the top of the body.

STEP# 17 Cut 2 triangles for the ears.

STEP# 17 Cut 2 triangles for the ears.

STEP#18 Do a pretty blanket stitch along the edges of the ear. Sew the ears to the head. 

STEP#18 Do a pretty blanket stitch along the edges of the ear. Sew the ears to the head.

Your anteater should look something like this now, if he doesn’t well then
maybe you should go bake a chocolate cake and then come back later when you’re not so frustrated.

Your anteater should look something like this now

STEP#19 Cut 2 white circles for the white of the eyes and stitch down.
Sew on 2 black buttons for the eyes. Now he can look back at you!
Ahh! I think he loves you! Your his Mama!

STEP#19 Cut 2 white circles for the white of the eyes and stitch down. Sew on 2 black buttons for the eyes. Now he can look back at you!

You did it! You are done the hard parts. Now just make a strap and sew it on at each side. I used pink ribbed ribbon.It makes a great gift or make it for yourself, try different animals.

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