Introduction: Ballet Shoe Makeover

About: I'm a bit of a crazy cat lady with a penchant for red wine, travel, and making something from nothing. I blog at Shrimp Salad Circus, where I cover everything from an extensive library of DIY tutorials to tech…

I'm in cleaning mode, so I've been separating everything I own into things I want and things I don't anymore. These shoes almost landed in the dreaded Pile Two, and then I got this cute (and absurdly girlie) little idea for them!

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Step 1: Materials

  • pair of flats (new or pre-loved)
  • four large jump rings
  • scissors
  • fire (lighter or a candle)
  • at least four beads (optional)
  • lightweight ribbon
  • skewer, drill, or sharp-tipped pliers

Step 2: Make the Holes

Try your shoes on to find a spot at the back of each side where a jump ring won't rub your ankle. Mine went into the little gaps between the skinny back of my foot and the shoe. Mark the spots if you need to, then [carefully!] bore a little hole using a skewer, drill bit, or some jewelry pliers. If you're using leather shoes, a drill might be the best option. Don't stab yourself like I did!

You should have a small, clean hole like the image above. Continue to the other side of the shoe and then to both sides of the other shoe.

Step 3: Add the Rings

Open one of your jump rings, and thread it through one of the holes. Close it back as tightly as possible. Always open and close jump rings forward to back, not side to side. This keeps the circle from bending out of shape and losing its strength.

Repeat with the other three jump rings, closing them all as tightly as possible. When your shoes have two new "earrings" apiece, it's time to move onto the next step.

Step 4:

Step 5:

Cut two long pieces of your ribbon to wrap around your ankles. I used about 40 inches per shoe.

Using a small flame, carefully singe the four ribbon ends to keep it from fraying and make it easier to thread.

Step 6: Tie It All Up

Thread one ribbon through the two rings on one shoe, and then continue with your other shoe.

Step 7: Just for Funsies

Add a decorative bead to each ribbon end. I used some nautical little celluloid vintage rings that I've had lying around for ages. You could even thread a few little beads onto each end. This is purely decorative. Tie it tightly, and trim the end of the knot.

Now just tie these around your ankles and then finish it off with a cute little bow! The best part of these (besides reviving an old pair of shoes and the fact that it's practically free) is that you can change the ribbons out to match anything you're wearing!

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