Baby Cradle Purse

Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 148 Posts

This is also sometimes called a Church Purse. It is crocheted using a dishwashing detergent bottle for a base. Any oval bottle will work. When it is closed it is a purse, and opened it is a baby cradle.



  • Detergent bottle, oval shape
  • 3 ply yarn, baby or sport
  • 3 inch baby doll or size to fit
  • Scrap of fabric for a blanket
  • Heavy Duty Shears
  • 1/4 inch paper punch
  • Crochet hook size F


Remove label from bottle and cut 2 inches above the bottom with heavy duty scissors. Punch holes around edge of bottle, approximately 1/4 inch apart.



Using crochet hook, size F, crochet the "Bonnet" first.

Ch 2. Make 7 HDC in first Ch. Ch 2 and turn. (Ch 2 counts as first HDC in next row).

2nd Row: 2 HDC in 1st st. 1 HDC in next 4 sts, 3 HDC in last st. Ch 2; turn.

3rd Row: 2 HDC in 1st st. *HDC in next st. Repeat from * across, ending with 3 HDC in last st. Ch 2; turn.

4th Row: HDC in each of first 3 sts. 2 HDC in each of next 6 sts. HDC in each of last 3 sts. Ch 2; turn. Cradle2_260x195.gif


5th & 6th Rows: 1 HDC in each st across. Ch 2; turn.


7th Row: 1 DC in each st across. Do not end off.

Invert the bonnet into bottle as show in photo. Make 2 SC in each hole around the edge of the bottle, catching the edge of the bonnet as you go. Join with a Sl St.

2nd rnd: Ch 2, 2 DC in first st. * Skip 2 sts; 3 DC in next st. Repeat from * around. Join with Sl St to top of first shell. This row is the base row for the shell st pattern.

3rd, 4th, & 5th Rows: 3DC in each space between shells. Repeat ending each round with Sl St to op of first shell.


6th Row: (Beading Row) Ch 3 *sk 2 sts. HDC in next st; ch 1. Repeat around. Join with Sl St to top of Ch 3.

7th Row: in first ch 1 space make 1 SC, 1 HDC, 1 DC. In next ch 1 space, 1 DC, 1 HDC, 1 sc. Repeat around. Join with Sl St.


Make 2 Drawstrings: Ch 85 and end off for each one. Thread through the beading row beginning each string from opposite sides, and knot the ends. You may attach pompoms to hide the knots if you wish.

Click here to download PDF instructions.

By Harlean



Baby cradle purse made with a detergent bottle.

About The Author: Harlean Greathouse is a mother of three who has been married for 45 years. Long time readers of ThriftyFun will probably recognize her as Harlean from Arkansas, the name she has posted under as a valuable member of the ThriftyFun community.

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 104 Posts
May 30, 20080 found this helpful

I've seen these many. many years ago. Thanks for your precise instructions and photos.

By Connie (Guest Post)
May 30, 20080 found this helpful

Where can I get the little dolls that are suitable for the cradle purse?

By Janet (Guest Post)
May 30, 20081 found this helpful

I've always been a knitter - my mom was the crocheter. But this is just one more example of the cute and quick things you can make with crochet that would be just plain more complicated to knit!


Now that I'm retired, it just may finally be time for me to take up a new hobby and teach myself to use a hook as well as needles!

By Carol (Guest Post)
May 30, 20081 found this helpful

Oh, this is SO CUTE! I love, love, love vintage crafts. If any of my 4 children give me grandchildren (sigh) I will make this! Thank you :)



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May 30, 20081 found this helpful

I just want to say AWWWWWW!! That is so adorable and I wish I knew how to crochet, I would make some for my neices.


Silver Post Medal for All Time! 277 Posts
May 31, 20081 found this helpful

I haven't
seen these in ages. since I was a little girl and that was many,many years ago

May 31, 20081 found this helpful

I am blessed to know Harlean and have seen firsthand many of her creations over the years. They are awesome! Her photos are great, but when you see them up close you'll just be blown away, SO cute!


I'm FINALLY going to try making one for myself to use as a little makeup bag. Thanks for posting the pattern online Harlean, so maybe I won't lose it again. :^)

May 31, 20081 found this helpful

OMG, I think this is the cutest bag I have ever seen. I am going to ATTEMPT to make one for my granddaughter. It is really adorable. Thanks for sharing the instructions. WOW!

By adminnie (Guest Post)
June 1, 20081 found this helpful

Just wanted to let you know that I posted about this pattern on the daily chum. Too cute!

June 6, 20081 found this helpful

My mom used to make these, and I did as well for my nieces when they were little.


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 148 Posts
June 21, 20081 found this helpful

This is one of my patterns and I wanted to add some information. This is a vintage pattern and I understand that some of you are having trouble finding the small dolls. At the time I was making these, the dolls were available in craft stores, dime stores (remember those?) etc. Since someone asked about them, I did a little research. I could not find any in the on line craft supplies companies, but the other day I looked at the local Hobby Lobby store.


They don't have the small baby dolls, but they do have a cute Kewpie doll about 3 inches high, and they also have tiny teddy bears that would be a good substitute for the small dolls. Hope you can find what you need.
Harlean from Arkansas

February 11, 20091 found this helpful

Could you tell me where you bought the little baby
that goes inside the purse. I really enjoyed your
pattern, I have 5 of them to make, for granddaughters, nieces and neighbors little girls.
Thank you.

April 27, 20100 found this helpful

I made a cradle purse similar to this and also had a difficult time finding a small doll. Around Christmas time, however, I hit the mother lode. Many places sell little porcelein dolls all dressed up as Christmas ornaments and they are usually very inexpensive. I even found some at a dollar store and bought them out :-)

December 6, 20142 found this helpful

What an adorable little church purse pattern! Thank you very much! :)
Lee Ann

December 28, 20140 found this helpful

Thanks so much! I am making one for my granddaughter now. I bought some tiny babies at Walmart's baby and bridal shower department. I also found a tiny little 3" Rapunzel. Hope that helps.

July 12, 20170 found this helpful

I still have mine like this that my grandma made me 45 years ago. Love it, every little girl must have one also. LOL

October 10, 20220 found this helpful

I had one of these my grandma made me also that I no longer own but Im pretty sure the doll came from a hobby store where my dad used to buy his train collectibles

April 3, 20181 found this helpful

J'en ai fait 2 il y a maintenant 4 ans environ , une pour ma Petite-Fille et une autre pour l'amie de ma Petite-Fille , elles ont joué beaucoup avec cette petite sacoche et leur petite poupée que j'avais trouvé au magasin à $1 (Dollorama) , mais j'ai refait des vêtements plus convenables pour un bébé , pour que bébé dorme dans son porte-bébé berceau et j'ai crocheté aussi un fond à l'intérieur du berceau et une couverture au crochet pour couvrir le bébé ! C'était vraiment beau ! merci de ce beau souvenir que je me suis rappelée

Editor's Note: Here is the feedback message translated into English:

I made 2 there are now about 4 years, one for my granddaughter and another for my granddaughter's friend, they played a lot with this little bag and their little doll that I found at the $ 1 store (Dollorama), but I have redone clothes that are more suitable for a baby, so that the baby sleeps in his cradle baby carrier and I have also hooked a bottom inside the cradle and a crochet blanket to cover the baby! It was really beautiful! thank you for this beautiful memory that I remembered.

March 17, 20201 found this helpful

My mother made these 50 years ago for my daughters. She made them out of any plastic bottle she emptied. I guess it was her part of recycling while making people happy

February 20, 20210 found this helpful

Why can't I print this pattern. I would like to make one but I need to print it out.


Silver Post Medal for All Time! 267 Posts
February 21, 20210 found this helpful

There is a print option on the page, right below the title. This will allow you to print it.

February 28, 20220 found this helpful

I had to look a while to find your pattern, it is much like the one I made my daughter, years ago. I made it out of the base from a downy bottle. Thank you for sharing your pattern with a Mother from the 60,s.



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