Girls Camp Craft: Duct Tape Purse Tutorial


Today I’m featuring my duct tape purse tutorial that I made for the girls camp craft for my church last week.  I was in charge of coming up with arts and crafts for Girls Camp for my church.  With 250 girls and three days of crafting, that meant 750 craft kits for girls camp.  It was a ton of work but they turned out beautifully!

My main goal for the week was to show them how much fun it can be to create something beautiful.  My secondary goal was to teach them how to use different textiles in different purposes.  Therefore we made:

On Day 1 we made Duct Tape Purses!  They were a little difficult to make with a crowd of 50 girls at a time, but they LOVED them and had so much fun with them afterwards.

Girls Camp Craft:  Duck Tape Purse Tutorial

Duck Tape Purse Tutorial

Materials to Make 1 Duck Tape Purse

Black Duct Tape  {one large roll from Home Depot  makes approx 6 purses}
Colored Duck Tape Roll {one roll makes approx 3 purses}
18″x 7″  Paper Template for Body of the Bag {optional}
30″ x 2″ Paper Template for Purse Strap {optional}
1″ Piece of Black Velco

How To Organize The Craft

We had around 50 girls each hour to teach how to make the craft.  So to keep things organized, I had one table with the animal print duct tape on it.  This way when the girls came into the craft room they lined up to receive their duct tape.  It worked smoothly.

Girls Camp Craft
Prep The Tables

At each table we had scissors, 3 rolls of black duct tape, 1″ strips of Velco, and candy all laid out for them.  We also laid out a template for the body of the bag and the purse strap template at each chair.  This way the girls knew how long to cut their duct tape.

Ready. Set. Craft!

duck tape crafts

Give A Few Tips To Set Up For Success

1. Once all the girls have arrived, briefly give the girls an overview of the craft as well as a few tips to set them up for success.  Such as:

  • Do not over-think this craft.  It’s easier than it looks, so have fun with it and take your time.  It does not need to be perfect and it will still look amazing!
  • Take your time!  Mistakes happen when you try to rush it.
  • There are 2 black pieces of construction paper at their chair.  These are templates to be used as measuring sticks on how long to cut their duct tape.  Please do not adhesive the duct tape to the paper.  {Tip:  Although if you have a small group – this craft will be a LOT faster and easier if they do attach the duct tape to the construction paper.}
  • The philosophy to this craft is that they have to cover all of the STICKY tape with tape.  So they will be layering tape on top of each other to create the purse.
  • This duct tape is easier to use than the grey kind – you can pull it off of itself if you need to.
  • The key is to take your time and be patient.
  • It is also a LOT easier if you measure and cut your tape first and then attach it to itself.  Do not try to tape one side together and then pull it off the roll ~ it will mess everything up!
  • If they have any questions to raise their hand at any time and a YCL {youth camp leader} will come to help them.

Hand Out Duct Tape

Our camp theme was “A Jungle Out There” and therefore I chose to use animal print duct tape to make the purses out of.  To save on cash, I used the black tape for the inside of the purse and the straps.

2.  Each girl was given: a roll of animal print duct tape.  The black rolls were already on the table.

Cut The Tape ~ The Purse Body

3.  There are 2 black pieces of construction paper at their chair.  These are templates to be used as measuring sticks on how long to cut their duct tape.  Please do not adhesive the duct tape to the paper.

Tip:  If you have a small group – this craft will be a LOT faster and easier if they do attach the duct tape to the construction paper.  It would be worth doing if you have the time to cut them all out ahead of time.

4.  To adhesive the lines together, carefully align the tape and barely overlap it just enough to make a solid bond. {like 1 centimeter}  You can do as many rows for the body as you’d like.  For budget reasons, we did four lines of animal print duct tape.

Tip:  Encourage the girls to not over think their cuts.  It does not need to be perfect and it will still look amazing!

5.  For the inside of the purse repeat the process but with the black tape.

6.  Be sure the girls measure and cut the black tape and then attach it on top of the animal print tape one row at a time.  Otherwise it will be a mess.

Make the Body a Circle

5.  Cut both sides so that they are straight with a clean line. Then measure the width of body {4 layers of tape} and cut a piece of black duct tape that size.

6.  Fold the body together with the animal print side out and overlap a 1/2 inch.  Secure with the black duct tape.

Cut The Tape ~ The Purse Strap

7.  Measure the duct tape according to the purse strap template.  Cut one line of duct tape according to the purse strap template and then a second line 6 inches smaller.

8.  Lay out the longer piece sticky-side-up and then center the smaller piece and place it on top of the longer one, creating the strap.

Attach the Strap & Purse Together

9.  Take one side of the strap and line it up with the side black tape that you used to secure the body together. {step 6}

Tip:  Make sure that all of the sticky part is placed onto the purse.  If you leave any of the sticky side onto the strap then it will stick to your clothing.

Beware:  Be sure to line the strap on top of the black tape you used in Step 6.  If you don’t, you will have an extra black strip somewhere on the body of your purse. {see picture above 11 b}

10.  Now press your purse together so that the purse strap is all the way to one side.  You’re going to place the other end of your purse strap exactly opposite of the purse.  If it’s not exactly on the other side then your purse won’t hang right.

Tip:  If your purse is large, you can take another 2″ strip of tape and tape the inside of the purse to the strap to double secure it together so that it won’t come off when it’s in use.

Seal the Bottom ~ Easy Version

There are many ways to seal the bottom of the purse.  To make it really easy for 250 girls to understand I did this version and it worked great!

11 a.  To seal the bottom, you will need to hold the purse with both hands and pinch in your index fingers.  This will fold in both edges making a diagonal edge.

12 a.  Measure the width of bottom and cut a piece of black duct tape that size.

13 a.  Place the bottom of the purse onto the black duct tape and then fold the tape over, sealing both sides of the bottom of the purse.

14 a.  Cut the ends of the duct tape diagonally to polish it off.

Seal the Bottom ~ Difficult Version

This version is a little bit more difficult, as you’ll be folding the bottom like a gift.  The problem with doing this version with a large group is that you need several books the correct width to successfully fold it into itself.

11 b.  Take the circle of the base of the purse and pull it over a book.

12 b.  Take a black piece of duct tape and adhesive it to the inside of the bottom of the purse sticky side up.

13 b.  Next wrap a longer piece of duct tape all the way around the base of the purse.  Be careful not to let it stick to itself or the bottom of the purse which is sticky side up.

14 b. Fold like a Gift:   Take both ends and fold them down onto the sticky side of the tape. Next fold the right side down and then the left side down.

Secure The Purse with Velcro ~ Easy Version

15 a.  To secure the purse closed, I chose to do the easy version for camp.  Simply take your 1″ Velcro piece and place it on the inside top of the purse.  Then close the purse to secure the other side of the Velcro to seal.

Secure The Purse with Velcro ~ Difficult Version

If you’re only making a few purses then you can make a darling flap for the top of the purse to secure it closed made out of 3 rows of duct tape and a Velcro tab.

15 b.  Measure the top of the purse and cut 3 strips of black tape that length.  Then overlap them 1 centimeter like you did in Step 4.

16 b.  Cut 2 more black strips of tape the size of the top of the purse and lay them on top of the first two rows.

17 b.  Use the third open tape to secure to the back top of the purse.  Be sure to tape it so that the flap overlaps the top and front of the purse.

18 b.  Measure and cut one last piece of black take to secure the flap onto the back of the purse.  Cut the tape just a little bigger than the flap itself.

19 b.  Attach the Velcro tab to the inside front of the purse and close it securing the other side in it’s proper place onto the outside front of the purse. {see picture above 15 b}

Be Flexible and Have Scraps

One thing I learned from my first experience with teaching crafts to 250 girls ~ be flexible and have scraps available!  I think the best thing that came out of this week was seeing the girls create.  They took my instruction into a completely new level with each craft and it was a thing of beauty.  I just loved seeing all of the finished projects and what the girls dreamed up.  So be flexible and have scraps of paper on hand for those who want to really get creative.

Duct Tape Bracelets

The girls that were too intimidated to make a purse ended up making dict tape bracelets.  They were so adorable, I had to make one too!  If I was to do this craft again with 250 girls – I would forgo the purses and just do the bracelets.  They are so easy and take up hardly any tape so they’re very budget friendly.  These are made with Velco so they can be taken on and off easily.

Duct Tape Bracelets

Here are several other designs for the duct tape bracelets.  I didn’t have a template or class for these, the girls just created them on their own.

how to make a duct tape bow

Duct Tape Bows

We also made duct tape bows that were so super easy to make.  I created a pictured tutorial on how to make a duct tape bow over on the Tip Junkie Homemade site.  I’ll warn you these are so addicting and fun to make.  They’re a darling summer arts and crafts activity for kids.

More Girls Camp Crafts

I’m Linking to these Fabulous Women:
Skip To My Lou
Tatertots and Jello
Todays Creative Blog
Tip Junkie


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  1. I’m in charge of crafts for a 4-H camp this summer. I’d love to see the paper embellished frames, but the links aren’t working. Can you help a girl out with that? Thanks!

  2. Love, love, love! So going to do this with my daughters, who at ages 7, and 10 are already envious of the girls who get to go to Girl’s Camp!

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