July 28, 2013

Repurposed Baby Shoes

Another Pinterest inspired craft that came to life yesterday. We are always on the lookout for awesome repurposing ideas, especially those that look vintagey (vintagish?) and shabby chic-ish. Yeah, I make up words... cuz I can.

We have been stocking up on old baby shoes we have found at thrift stores and antique malls. This is the box of stash we had to work with. Some are from my granddaughter's discarded, outgrown shoe wardrobe. One pair is from Jan's oldest son when he was a baby, the leather white high top shoes. I call them Zippy shoes, because they look like the kind that circus chimps wore as they rode their bikes around a stage. And there was always one chimp named Zippy. Do you remember those acts? Ed Sullivan would occasionally have them on his show. Yes, I am old as dirt and know who Ed Sullivan was. There is a black pair of shoes in there too that I want to turn in to Halloween sump'n sump'ns.

We gathered up some of our stash of lace and bling and ribbons and went to work to turn these adorable little shoes into adorable little pin cushions. We started by placing fish tank pebbles in the bottom of the shoes for stability. After researching a few how-tos about making the pin cushion part, we went with filling a circle of tight woven material with bird grit. That's the stuff you put in a cup for caged birds to help with digestion, and you can find it in any pet supply store. Draw up the cloth into a ball with a needle and thread, secure tightly and then cover that with a more decorative material like vintage velvet.

Then came the bling part. We added some old lace, old rhinestone jewelry pieces, vintagey tinsel (I'm sticking with that version of my made up word), flowers, pearls, and replaced the shoe laces with satin ribbons. We hot glued all of the components to the shoes.
Every single one is stunning! and very easy to make. We'll be selling them in the fall.

This is one of Kinsley's shoes. Baby pink sneakers that I think she might have worn once. Isn't that the way it goes with newborns? Their little feet grow so fast. It has a beautiful pin made of clay roses attached to a piece of an antique crochet doily. Pearls were glued around the edge of the shoe, and a little bird charm hangs from the doily. The pin cushion is made with pink velvet that has been embossed with stars.

 This one looks similar to a Zippy shoe. It has that incredible aged look and was well worn.

Off white flowers, satin ribbon and a rhinestone piece decorate the front of the shoe, while a tea stained crocheted lace encircles the top of the shoe. It has a white velvet pin cushion.

All the ingredients for a sweet shabby chic pin cushion.
This one is a little Mary Jane shoe, which is hard to tell because the straps have been covered with embellishments. It too has vintage lace, a vintage rhinestone pin, satin ribbon and pearls for decorations.

It was also a well worn shoe. I guess babies wore them longer back in the day. It seems like now, people don't put sweet shoes on tiny babies like they used to. And the trend is more towards something a rock star might wear. Lots of bling, lots of sparkle, or gold lame´ type material. The new shoes aren't very sweet... they're gutsy. And too grown-uppy.

I suppose that makes our repurposed shoes all that more special. Something gone by the wayside like good manners and respect and Ed Sullivan.

Look how cute they are on Jan's chippy shelf. And the antique turquoise Mason jars add to the ambiance.  So cute!