To write my first blog post I had to come up with a project to post about. While I do a lot of projects, it’s not something I’m doing all the time. So I tried to think of something simple and cheap I could make, just to ease myself into blogging regularly. My son’s second birthday is coming up and I know I’m going to get a lot of good posts out of that party, so I just needed something to get the ball rolling.
I have a ton of felt for a quiet book I thought about and never made it past the ordering 20$ worth of felt from Amazon phase. Felt is good, you don’t have to hem it because it doesn’t fray. You can hand stitch it with embroidery thread and it looks stylized. No one thinks you did that because it’s been so long since you’ve used your sewing machine you forgot how to use it. I could make something small and cute out of felt.
I started looking around Pinterest. None of the dolls I saw looked like something that would hold my almost two year old’s interest. Play food looked… I don’t know… Like what was the point of just doing one piece of play food? Christmas ornaments were cute, but it being January coupled with my Judism, made that seem like an odd choice.
Then I came across felt slippers. I don’t think it was even a craft suggestion, just a thing that is sometimes made out of felt. This was actually really perfect. My son had recently become obsessed with slippers. Unfortunately the only slipper like things we had were my husband’s slippers (which were way too big), or my son’s old baby shoes (which barely fit). Sometimes he would run around the house with both on, his baby shoes crushing his toes underneath, and his father’s slippers tripping him on top.
So, great. I’ve gone from a simple easy project, just to get my feet wet, to teaching myself the craft of cobbling. Perfect. I took a good hard look at my husband’s slippers.
I figured the main slippers were made up of components: bottom, top,and sides. There was also lining and a little strap for decoration, but whatever. I started by tracing around my kid’s feet bribing him with videos on my phone to stand still. I added about half an inch all around for seem allowance. I cut out this sort of pattern from construction. Then I measured the circumference of the pattern with a piece of string. Measured the heal of some of his current shoes. Added a little for seams, then went to cut it out and found I didn’t have enough felt, so I disregarded my original pattern and just cut what I could. Pretty much I had no idea what I was doing and made everything up as I went along. I lined the slipper with some faux lambs wool from a blanket my dogs had destroyed. I stitched the top on with embroidery thread and…
Super cute right? But they didn’t fit, and I suspect if they had they wouldn’t have stayed on.
I went to try again. This time I traced my kids shoes instead of his foot, again adding half an inch. I had plenty of felt, but I needed some matching thread. I stopped by the fabric store where I realized there were a lot of things I needed. It had been so long since I really sewed, I was running low on supplies. So I bought a starter sewing kit that included a couple dozen colors of thread. A pin cushion braclet, to keep track of the pins while I sewed. Some grippy matirial for the bottom of the slippers, and some fabric that was faux suede on one side faux lambs wool on the other. I bought a yard of this fabric, which was way too much, but at this point my toddler was running around the store screaming and I forgot they sell less than a yard of fabric at a time.
I left the store $60 poorer, which I’m pretty sure is a lot more than it would cost to buy a pair of slippers, but then what would I do with my time?
I altered my original plan a little so I could put elastic in, and I ended up not using the grippy fabric. They came out very home made looking
but they fit and my kid freaken loves them. He wears them all day long, and to sleep, and over his footy pajamas. He will still wear his dad’s slippers over them, but I’m calling this a win.
I did try dotting the bottom with hot glue, for grip. But my kid just enjoyed peeling these dots off and probably eating them. So, there’s no grip, but he’s yet to wipe out. Maybe I’ll make another pair with the extra fabric and the grips I bought the first time when he outgrows these