Beaded Purse Patterns

Q: I am in love with antique beaded purses. I am looking for a source of patterns for loomed or peyote stitch purses which will fit onto a frame such as those from 'The Bag Lady'. All I have been able to find are knitted patterns and I do not knit.

A: If you want to loom them you should be able to just loom off of the knitting patterns. I would recommend considering learning to knit. I didn't know how to knit but learned specifically to try one of these. I learned using Alice Korach's instructions in Bead & Button #2 It is a smallish, flat purse, good for beginning, plus she gives excellent instructions. Learning to knit doesn't take that long and the tension probably won't be great on your first purse, but it'll still be a lovely item. Bead knitting has the most wonderful feel, very sensual. It's probably more ideal for affixing to a hinged purse frame since it has a little "give" not only for bending, but for stretching, unlike most peyote and loomwork. Yes, you have to string all (or at least large numbers of) the beads in the pattern in order before knitting, but this actually makes bead knitting more ideal for travel, because once the beads are strung, you don't have to worry about loose beads and can just knit away. And while I still enjoy offloom beading stitches, I find that the rhythm of knitting can be very soothing sometimes.