Wednesday, October 10, 2012

DIY Foxy Slippers

So, I have yet another DIY to share today: a pair of foxy slippers. I know, I know, another DIY? I promise you this is still a travel blog; I guess I've just been feeling rather creative lately or something. And you know, these shoes are sort of related to travel in that they are flat so they pack well and they're easy to slip on and off, which is great for going through security at the airport. Lastly, I made these while I was in Florida for work, so it's a fun and easy project that's achievable on the road.

For this DIY, I took a pair of cheap slippers and embellished them with an embroidered fox face. I was inspired by these Tory Burch velvet fox smoking slippers, which I saw a few months ago. I was incredibly tempted to buy myself a pair but I was deterred by two things: 1) the hefty price tag, $250 yikes and 2) they are sold out in my size. Smoking slippers are super trendy right now, and though I'm not usually a bandwagonner, the cute little fox was difficult to get over. I really wanted a pair.

So my solution? DIY project! Though I took a Home Economics class back in 7th grade and learned to use a sewing machine, I haven't done much needlework since then. A handful of times, I've hand-sewn missing buttons and roughly hemmed a pair of too-long pants, oh and once, I turned a pair of pink flares into skinny jeans and did a decent job, but none of those stitches were professional, to say the least. What I'm trying to say is that this is an easy DIY because you don't need to be a skilled sewer. However, patience and the ability to endure sore fingers will be required.

You'll need:
a pair of smoking flats or slippers (mine were $16 on sale at Target, $20 regular price)
tan felt ($0.50/sheet)
embroidery floss in black, white, cream, and foxy orange ($0.39 per color)
krazy glue ($4 per tube)
ribbon ($0.99 per roll)
needle
marker
scissors

I started by drawing a fox face shape on the felt. Then I cut out two fox heads, one for each shoe.

To start the embroidery, I cut a piece of floss (a practical length to work with, about 18") and separated the strands on one end. Embroidery floss is usually made up of 6 individual threads. I pulled the floss apart and threaded my needle with two threads. I recommend using two to three threads at a time for this project.
(1) Then, I just proceeded to "color in" my fox faces using the thread. I did this freehand (that's why the foxes look a little uneven) but if you're not dumb like me, you can draw the faces on the back and use it as a guide. (2) I began the "coloring" process by drawing the eyes, then the bridge of the nose and the nose itself. (3) Then, I switched to a cream floss and filled in the weird shape between the eyes. Then I switched to a white floss and filled in the whites of the eyes. (4) Using the white floss, I outlined and filled in the ears. (5) And then I filled in the snout (6) and the beard. (7) Then I went back to the black floss and gave a little definition to the ears. Once the details were all finished, I switched to the orange floss and outlined (8) and filled in the remaining negative space. (9) And then my fox was (almost) complete.
To prevent myself from switching back and forth between colors too much, I worked on both faces simultaneously. I would draw the face on one fox, and then draw the face on the second; fill in the nose on one, fill in the nose on the other; etc. One fox came out a little mean/grumpy looking but all of my friends said that's the charm. The final step was to add a bit of detail to the mouth, snout, and beard using black thread. This step wasn't crucial, but I thought it made the foxes look more finished.
Then, I flipped the foxes over (they don't look as awesome on the back as they do on the front) and added a bit of crazy glue. I made sure any loose strings were tucked in and then I stuck it onto the shoes.
I did my best to make sure the foxes were even on the shoes. They look slightly off, but it's not overly noticeable.
I didn't want to miss the bow detail on the Tory Burch shoes so I used a bit of velvet ribbon. I thought the velvet would be a nice touch since the Target shoes were a faux-suede and they were missing a bit of that luxury. I cut two pieces of ribbon, approximately 4" long and two pieces of ribbon, approximately 1" long. To make the bow, I placed a dab of crazy glue in the middle (on the non-velvet side) and made a loop with half of the ribbon. After waiting a few seconds for the glue to dry, I placed another dab of glue in the center and made a loop with the other half. Another few seconds of dry time and then I placed yet another dab of glue in the center and a dab of glue on each end of the shorter ribbon. I wrapped the shorter ribbon around the center of the bow and squeezed while the glue dried.
I glued the ribbons over the foxes' ears, slightly angled.
 Et voila, a cute pair of DIY foxy smoking slippers. Success! The total cost of this project was under $25. Total time was probably between 6 to 8 lazy hours. I was watching things on Netflix, hanging out, and eating while I was sewing so I wasn't v. efficient. So go! Be inspired and make your own. I've also been thinking about a few other animals that might be cute: badger, raccoon, panda bear, koala, elephant, lion, bulldog maybe? I think the best idea is to pick an animal with interesting details on its face. For example, I wouldn't pick a plain black cat - I'd probably do a tabby cat to get some colors and points of interest. That's what's going to make a cooler shoe.

4 comments:

  1. Wow, absolutely brilliant and so beautiful. I love foxes, and currently working on a pillow. Love your needle work!

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  2. thanks!! i just popped over to your blog - you take lovely photos! and that peach cake looks so yummy.

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  3. Hi, just wondering if you would be interested in making me a pair? I would pay you generously for doing so....I just need the fox faces...I am just not sure I could do this myself?
    thanks,
    holly

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    Replies
    1. Hi Holly, thanks for stopping by. As much as I'd love to make this for you, I just don't have the time! I work a full time job and currently we are renovating our kitchen (which you can read about on my food blog) so I'm quite busy. Honestly, I'm sure you'd be able to do this yourself. It's not too tricky; you just need time and patience. Good luck.

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