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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Fun Shoe Redo!

Here is a quick (about 1 hr) project for all of the shoe-fetish ladies out there.  I picked up 2 pair of fabric flats from the ginormous big-box store a few days ago- you may already have some that could use a face lift.  These were under $10/pair, the trims and fabrics I had on hand.  

For supplies gather:
fabric shoes, any color or style
ribbon trim- takes about 12" total per color- per pair
buttons to cover, or fabric flowers, etc.  You pick!!
craft adhesive, like goop or E-6000
toothpicks to spread adhesive
a few clothespins or clips to help hold stuff on
old socks to stuff in toes
X-acto or craft knife- razor blade if you are brave
I sealed them after completion with Scotchgard spray

Cut your ribbon pieces to length, plus a few inches leeway on each side.  If you are using covered buttons, cut fabric and cover buttons according to instructions.  I used pliers to bend the shank down flat on the back of the button.  If you are using regular buttons with a shank, cut it off or bend it down.   Stuff  old socks into the toe of the shoe so you have something to push against, and to help it hold shape.  I spread out my ribbon on a paper plate, and squeezed a small amount of adhesive into a blob on the plate.  Don't squeeze out too much, because it starts to set up quickly, and you will just end up wasting it.  Use your toothpick to get some adhesive, and smear it smoothly onto the back of the ribbon.  Don't smear the whole thing- remember- you cut it long, so you have both ends free to work with it!  If you don't get the adhesive quite far enough, don't worry, you can lift up the loose ends from the shoe and add some to the backside of the ribbon and get it just right.   I eyeballed the ribbon placement- you may want to mark the shoes with disappearing marker.  

Tip:  Hold the ribbon taught w/ both hands, and lay it across the shoe, and smooth from the middle outward.  There is a little bit of play and open time, but not much!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Plain Dress Dress-Up

In my next few blog entries, I will be taking some rather plain,  everyday kind of clothing items, and adding some inexpensive *bling* to bring them into 2010.   I will go through the supplies and steps below.  This upcycle cost nothing, because the dress was here, and not being worn because of it's "too plain" look, and the fabric flowers were made from cotton t-shirts my son had outgrown.  As fast as he has grown the past few years, we seem to have lots of those!

So, grab your we go!

  • First- all you need is a shirt, dress, or top lying around that could use a little help.  Most everyone has more than one thing they bought, but just can't get excited about wearing.  There are some items, like this dress, that when I bought it I thought "great, I can accessorize this", and yet, somehow.......accessories just don't work right.  
  • Second- go through your drawers, or your significant others, or even your neighbors drawers and harvest a few lost and forgotten T-shirts.  Pick shirts of similar weight.
  • Third- find some items to trace around to make your circles patterns.  I used measuring cups, and made my patterns from stabilizer backing I use for machine embroidery.  My 3 circles sizes ended up approx.  2 1/2"- 2 1/8" and 1 5/8" diameter.  
  • Fourth- start cutting lots of circles!  I decided on alternating my background colors, so some flowers would be gray (largest), black (medium) and some black (largest), gray (medium), but my centers were always white.  I needed 9 of each combination, so 18 groups of 3 circles. Now that all of the circles are cut comes the fun part- assembling the flowers!!  Just stack 3 circles on top of each other, pinch from the bottom in the center, and sew a few tack stitches, until you get the amount of ruffling and shape you desire.   I love the bling, so I added pearl beads to the center of each of my flowers, just for fun.  You could add buttons, bells, anything that you like- or leave them blank in the middle.  There is certainly no right or wrong to any of this.  You may want to do more or less flowers per garment, depending on what type of garment you are adding the flowers to.  Again, personal taste is your guide.  Here is a picture of my flower groups in process:      

I pinned the flowers on the dress to arrange them (and figure out how many I needed to make), and also so it would be easier to sew them correctly into place.  Then, I just sat down and stitched them by hand to the yoke of the dress. 

All My Best

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