Monday, November 14, 2011

My New Shoeventure!

Hello folks!

As much as I love making bags, and I do, I also like to branch out.  I can never stick to just one thing for very long.  I get bored and I have to do something to break the monotony, or get out of a creative rut.

I also have funny sized/shaped feet.  About a year ago, I found some really cute black strappy flats at JC Penney, and I got them on sale.  They fit great, which is hard to find.  Fast-forward to a couple of weeks ago... My cute shoes are now more of a smelly foot covering than a shoe.  I've worn them consistently since I bought them.  I started looking for good replacement shoes, and lets just say that I've had less than stellar options.  The biggest issue is that I want flats for work, since I have arthritis in one of my big toes due an accident a couple of years ago.  Cute adult sized flats are hard to find, especially ones that fit my short, wide tooties.  The one pair I found at Payless that I thought might be worthy turned out to be a bust, size wise.  This shoe problem has been weighing on my mind for a while.

Fast-forward again to about 4 days ago.  I was surfing Etsy and thinking about Christmas presents.  I couldn't do purses/bags again for most my list since that's what they got last year (I know, I know, you can never have too many purses, but I don't want to become that person who always gets you the same thing every year; I like variety!).  I wanted to something different.  Since I like to multitask and think about lots of stuff at once, the niggly shoe problem was also floating around my mind.  So, I decided to see what was around in terms of shoes on Etsy.  That lead me to some patterns for making your own cloth slippers/shoes.  I did some research on the patterns and soling material and settled on a set of patterns that I just adored.  Simple, functional, and of course I can make them with whatever fabric I want.  I purchased a couple of patterns from Shoeology as well as some soling material.

The patterns arrived in my inbox with in a couple of hours and I got to work on a test slipper.   These ugly brutes were the result.  I made them with some scrap fabric and didn't worry about making them seamless.  They are soled with dark grey felt which I added some hot glue dots to so I don't fall on my butt in the kitchen.   I've decided to call them frankenslippers, because they are cobbled together, have open seams, and I kind of walk like Frankenstein's monster trying to keep the right one on since the right one is larger than the left.

My second attempt at slipper making yielded this shiny house shoe:
Golden House Slippers

These are going to be a gift.  They are are seamless, which means they already look tons better than their predecessors.  They aren't perfect though, the one that's hiding underneath had some issues with attaching the sole lining and appears a little warped.  When its being worn its not noticeable at all, and doesn't bunch so its still very fluffy and comfortable. I figured out the problem, and solved it before stitching up the second, very nice one.  I'll probably redo the ugly one before gifting it.

These third slippers are nearly perfect!  I love them in all of their kawaii goodness:
Hello Slippers
There's one little bunch in the back of the left slipper's heel (right of the picture), but other than that, I think they're pretty good.  These little cuties also have a matching drawstring bag to be gifted in.

And now, my crowning achievement, the leap into shoes!  These things can be worn outside, with relative comfort and only a little ow-ow-I-stepped-on-a-rock (they are soft soled shoes).

Aren't they cute?  I love how they turned out.  I even modified the pattern for the natural canvas toe accent.  The shoes are made the same way as the slippers, but with a vinyl sole and foam/fleece insoles.  They are really comfy for bumming around the house AND running outside to get the mail.  I shall have to give them a good outside testing and take a walk in them.

I'm really considering adding some shoes and/or slippers to my Etsy shop.  I think it would be neat to be able to buy a bag and flats to match.  What do you guys think?


  1. what a great idea! i love the last ones, too. they're really and I love the cap around the toes.

  2. Thanks Naomi! I thought that little cap really made the shoe, and its a super easy add on.

  3. Those are awesome! I would seriously consider purchasing a pair to keep feets warm in house. Are you tossing ideas around for more solid soles? What about arch support? I think they'd also be cute with lil over the top of the foot straps, mostly fore decoration as well.

    Fingerless gloves, Slippers and Beanie cap. Indoor warmth set! in a bag!

  4. Thanks Raye! I do have pattern pieces to add two different kinds of straps; a basic mary jane type strap and a wider one.

    I have a couple of places where I could get some more solid soles, but the price is preventative right now. I have a made some foam inserts for extra supports. There's about 6 mm of foam with a soft fleece-y top layer. They are thin, and walking on gravel for a long time might get painful, but on relatively flat surfaces, I've found them to be quite nice so far!