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How to make a beaded bag, purse or pouch ?

Kralenwerk's Travels

Let me introduce myself, I am Herma Kattekamp-Remmerts, since 1983 occupied with knitting beaded bags & purses and since 27 years the proud owner of Netherland's only shop that is specialised in beads for the traditional beaded bags, purses & pouches.
It all started with an antique beaded bag I inherited from my mother....

Knitting with beads is an art that is centuries old. Bags, pouches and purses made by that technique were not mere utensils, they had to show the social and financial status of the bearer as well. The patterns used for these bags were universal in Western Europe of that era, but there were also regional variations. Patterns show much floral designs but also professions, buildings, scenery and animals. There were also beaded bags to commemorate important events to the bearer or her kinfolk or to be given to another person to express gratitude for services rendered or good deeds done. And there were pouches given to the beloved on which we see symbolical images as an anchor, arrow, key, heart and cross. Bags and purses used on Sunday were often purely ornamental and were precious works of art finished with (a typical Dutch feature) an ornamental silver frame. In our days these bags are not used anymore, only in a handful villages in the Netherlands they have yet some practical use. For re-enactment purposes or for old style dancing groups there is some demand for replica's as the orginal antique bags are far too vulnerable and costly to use.

From the moment I acquired that first purse it fascinated me, it was so old and fragile that on touch the beads worked loose. The purse stayed in a bijou-box for a couple of years, untill I discovered a booklet about knitting with beads, bought it and started the very same day knitting my very first beaded purse.

From that first simple purse I developed my skills and made bookmarkers, beaded eggs, brooches, flagrant-dispensers, keyrings. But my true vocation was clearly knitting or crochetting beaded bags, designed from old reconstructed patterns or even newly made modern patterns.
In short, about threehundred purses followed that first !

Difficult as it was to acquire the correct size and colors of beads and yarn, in 1993 I decided to purchase the beads and further requirements myself in the market and while that implicated that large volumes must be ordered, larger than necessary for my own needs, I ended automatically with my own bead shop.

Unfortunately in 2012 I had a cerebral infarction that paralysed one arm, eye and leg and I wasn't able anymore to knit beaded bags. My husband Rino continues the shop.

Now, 27 years later, we have a large collection of beads, frames, yarn and needles for knitting purses and bags.

Beads have different sizes. The ancient sizes derive from the number of beads per inch. In old times people knitted with seed beads size 14/0 and 15/0, and I am specialised in those very small seed beads, rocailles or petit point beads.

Knitting with beads is a hobby for everyone, if you have mastered the regular knitting or crochet, you can also master the art of knitting or crochetting with beads. If you choose " How to make a bag, purse or pouch ?" you will get an impression how it is done.

Herma Kattekamp-Remmerts


De Etgaarde 14
7861 BT Oosterhessselen
Tel.: 524582881
B.g.g: 06-43134000

This site is made by Marian and Rino Kattekamp.

All photographs on this site are property of Kralenwerk.

Fotomodellen: Delilah (H.Birmaan Blue Point), Esmée (H.Birmaan Blue Tortie), Koen de Coon (Maine Coon zwart zilver gemarmerd met wit), Lars (H.Birmaan Crème Point), Mickey (Maine Coon cream silver tabby mackerel met wit), Raisa (Russisch Blauw), Saima (H.Birmaan Seal Tortie), Tirza (H.Birmaan Seal Point), Yoeri (H.Birmaan Seal Point). Kai-Li (West Highland White Terrier)

This page is last modified on the 12th of |November 2020.