When you hear the word “glitter”, what immediately comes to mind?
Is it Tinkerbell’s fairy dust? Is it unicorns prancing through a field of wildflowers? Is it that not-very-good movie featuring Mariah Carey?
Well, for me – it was panic. Being in the Top Ten of One Artsy Mama’s One Crafty Contest, I was faced with the prospect of creating something totally and utterly fantastic with glitter.
*Spoiler alert* I ended up getting knocked out this round (sob!), but I’m still pretty happy with the way my project turned out. And Lila is absolutely thrilled!
I decided to try my hand at glitzing up a pair of old scuffed party shoes that we had hanging around the house. And when I say scuffed, I mean… these shoes were on their way to the garbage bin.
Unless “distressed faux-velvet” is a new trend in fashion (and if it is, please let this out-of-touch lady know), then these shoes needed some serious love.
I have to warn you – when I was making these shoes, I had some extreme doubts. I was snapping photos while muttering obscenities under my breath. Hubby would occasionally look over at me and ask, “Are you okay?”
This is when I would mutter even louder, or start to bang things around in frustration. I think it must be instinctual that I do this – I’m warning my mate that he should stay away from me, lest I accidentally wound him in a craft-rage.
I used Ashley’s extremely awesome tutorial for Mod Podging shoes (from her blog, Make it and Love it) to set the “base” for these glittery shoes. I have to say, Mod Podging shoes is surprisingly easy! I’m going to be giving some slightly-ugly shoes a closer look now – I know that I can easily transform those babies.
I will add a tip, though: use containers that you grabbed with sticky Mod Podge-y hands from the Tupperware drawer as pedestals for your shoes. This will save you from having to hold gloopy shoes while you try to create an even coat of Mod Podge.
And if you’re a crafter who is saying, “But Mod Podge is water-soluble…. that isn’t going to work on shoes!” Well, then let me introduce you to regular Mod Podge’s handyman cousin: Mod Podge Outdoor!
Yes, your mind is blown. I’ll give you a second.
Once the fabric had dried, I applied another coat of Mod Podge and then shook some white glitter over the shoe. I let them dry again, and then covered the glittery surface (carefully) with another coat of the outdoor Mod Podge.
Back onto the pedestals they went, and they stayed there for the night, while dreaming of fairy princesses and sparkly butterflies. I went to sleep and twitched and turned because I just was not sure about these shoes. Were they really just a huge disaster, and I wasn’t seeing it? Could I come up with another project in under a day and a half? Gah!
The next morning, I grabbed some light blue ribbon from the craft room and cut small snips about halfway through the width of the ribbon. This is so that the ribbon will bend along the curves of the shoe without creating lumps and bumps and wrinkles.
I used a hot glue gun to secure the ribbon to the shoe. Everything was going pretty well until… I was distracted and accidentally burned myself. Badly.
It was one of those burns where you drop everything you’re holding (glue gun, shoes, ribbon and all) and rush to put cold water on it. But t was too late: an angry white blister was already forming at the top of my thumb. And it throbbed.
I knew that I had been careless and perhaps even a bit cocky with that red-hot glue gun. I was briefly tempted to throw everything into a giant pile and then stomp away to cry over my thumb. But I stood my ground. These shoes were going to get trimmed out and be beautiful, dammit! I was doing this.
But I didn’t take any more pictures. Sorry guys. You can just imagine the sweat on my furrowed brow as I wrestled with the ribbon and the shoes and the glue gun (which I was a teensy bit afraid of by now).
But after the frustration and the occasional coddling of my blistered thumb, I had something to present to Lila. Something that we both loved.
Isn’t it funny how all of that doubt can be for nothing?
Lila adored her party shoes. She danced on the patio while staring at her glittery feet.
After trimming the shoes with the ribbon, I whipped up two little bows and planted a sweet little robin’s egg blue button in their centers. I thought it was the perfect way to finish off the shoes’ transformation.
It wasn’t until I took a step back and looked at how adorable these shoes were that I realized that I had been on the right track the whole time. It was definitely a bumpy track – and there may have been a few derailments – but it was still the right one.
Sometimes it’s fun to have a little bit of bling in your outfit – and why not wear that sparkle on your feet? Dig out those tattered old shoes and dress ’em up! You’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish!
And be careful with the glue gun. Those suckers are dangerous!
Follow Along With This Accident-Prone Mama!
Amy of while wearing heels
Tara, I think those shoes turned out beautiful. You did a great job. Sometimes, when fighting with projects, you can’t see how great they are until a few days has passed…glad to see this was the case here. I hope your blister is gone 🙂
Oh thank you, Amy! I can see all of the faults in the shoes, but I think it’s because I spent so much time wrestling with them! The blister has subsided, though now it’s a bit of a callous on my thumb. It’s a reminder, I think. I shouldn’t be cocky! (Especially with a glue gun!)
Kenz @ Interiors by Kenz
When I hear the word glitter, i think of the quote “glitter is the herpes of arts and crafts. it is impossible to get rid of.”
But those shoes are completely precious. Totally worth finding random glitter flecks in your carpet all year long! Also… side note, my mom is an elementary school teacher. So of course she was always having to do crafts with glitter each holiday. She would NEVER allow us to use glitter at home. I was always heartbroken. Now I’m a grown up and I can do what I want! And that means CRAFTS WITH GLITTER!
You’re so right – glitter IS trouble. I know that I’ll be sweeping glitter and finding it in corners for weeks!
That’s too funny that your mom prohibited glitter-usage at home! You definitely need to make up for those years of glitter depirvation! Glitter crafts forever! (In your house, though… we’re taking a little break right now).
(Oh, and thanks for the shoe-love. They need a little bit of limelight after getting booted from the contest. Poor babies. )
You can never judge a project until you see it through to completion… and these look gorgeous! I recently had a bad incident with my summer wreath… it did end up being completely deconstructed and redone so perhaps I should have quit when I wasn’t sure about how it was turning out. But in this case (and most) it was definitely worth persevering. They are so adorable:)
Oh, thank you, Krista! You’re so right that you have to keep on going with the project – though I had my doubts so many times with these shoes.
So cute! I do not know one little girl in my life right now! We seem to be inundated with boys!
And we are the opposite. We have a majority of girls in our life (though there are a few boys lurking around). 🙂
Oh, thank you, Kara!
Cheryl @ That’s What Che Said…
Super Cute! I really, really need a girl!
I guess it is harder to Mod Podge and glitter up an old pair of DC runners, isn’t it? Still… could be worth a try! 🙂
“I craft, therefore I have no fingerprints” is our household motto (at my expense) when Im getting glue gun happy!
ps those shoes turned out adorable!
That is so true, Letitia! My hands are becoming scarred messes due to run-ins with that glue gun!
And thank you – Lila really loves the shoes, too!
I am glad that I know you as well as I think I do, I knew these were your creation, and I voted for them… sorry to hear they didn’t make it, I think they are awesome!
I’m so glad that you figured out it was me! Yeah, I was a teensy bit bummed that they didn’t get through, but Lila is so thrilled with her party shoes that it really doesn’t matter! 🙂
These are adorable! Great job!
Oh, thank you, Bethany! 🙂
OMG Tara, I hadn’t seen these previously…these are GORGEOUS! Well done!
Thank you so much, Marilyn! Lila wears them when she’s feeling fancy! 🙂
they make little silicone finger guards to use with a hot glue gun. then no more burned fingers.
here’s an example: https://www.officesupply.com/craft-supplies/paint-more/craft-paints/mediums-finishes/podge-finger-caps/p456309.html?cid=ad-pla-non-brand&adpos=1o2&creative=51604294953&device=c&matchtype=&network=g&gclid=CJaY7bSe48UCFQeRaQodbiAAfg