Introduction: How to Make a Pair of Tiny Sneakers!
Do your fingers feel naked? Are you making a doll or have a doll without any shoes? Have incredibly tiny feet and can never find quite the right pair of shoes?
Well have I got news for you!
I'm going to show you how to make these tiny shoes. You can use them for whatever your heart desires, charms, earrings, dolls, really the uses are endless.
-Green (Base Color)
-White (Laces and Sole)
-Black (Details, Racing Stripe)
-Scraps (To shape the front)
Clay Roller or Pasta Machine
Scalpel or Craft Knife
(This is only my second go at these Converse style sneakers, and you can definitely tell which are which.)
Step 1: Step One: Cutting Out the Pieces
First you have to decide what color you want for your shoes, I wanted a green pair to clash with the red pair I already made, if you are using a color that you are mixing, make sure you make more than enough for the pair because it's better to have extra than to run out halfway.
Roll your clay out as thin as you'd like it. I did mine as thick as a good piece of fabric, number four on my pasta machine, which converts to 5/64" or 2m.
Using your blade cut two strips length wise on your sheet of clay. Each strip should be twice the length you want your shoes to be, and as tall as you'd like your shoes to be. Cut these strips in half length wise.
To give these little shoes pieces that shoe shape, you want to mark about halfway on the longer half and a little under a half on the side where the front of the shoe will be, then using a long S shape cut it into the shoe shape.
These shoe shapes will be your template for the size of the rest of the shoe's components, so make sure you have the size you like.
Using the back of a shoe shape, cut two heel strips, one for each shoe, if you look at converse they all have this feature.
Using the point from the top of the shoe to the bottom, at a diagonal, cut out two rounded at the top, tapered rectangles for the tongues of the shoes.
You know have all the base components of your shoe.
Step 2: Step Two: Soles and Sides
Make a sole for your shoe it should be a little shorter than your shoe shape, and about as wide as the shoe shape. It should be a little thick because you are still going to add a racing stripe, and making it too thin makes it very crowded.
Then get a little chunk of scrap clay and make it into a little mound, this will make it so the toe of your shoe doesn't just collapse, if you want you shoe hollow all the way through you can put tin foil loosely inside and take it out after baking. If you have trouble keeping up the sides of the shoe you can make a whole little foot shape to put into the shoe to help you mold it around it.
Stick the tongue of your shoe onto the front of each mound.
Take your shoe forms and wrap them around the mound at the front, and then keep the rest as close to the outside of the sole as possible for the most realistic look.
Leave a little gap for the heel strip, and it's ok if there is some of the mound showing at the front of the shoe, it is going to be covered.
Step 3: Step Three: Heel Strip, Toe Cover, and Bumpers
Take your heel strips and use them to connect the two backs of the walls of the shoe, you want it to slightly overlap each side. You might want to use your finger or a pencil to stick them together well enough.
Taking the white, make a long flat half circle for the toe cover. Make sure there is a definitive line between it and the sole of the shoe.
Next for the bumpers, roll out some white clay and push it over the front of the sole of the shoe, cut it the width of the sole and let is go a little ways further than the cut off of the toe cover. The back bumper should go a little past the width of the heel strip.
Step 4: Step Four: Eyelets, Logo, Racing Stripes, and Bumper Texture
Using the tip of a sharpened pencil, or something tapered to put eyelets into your shoe, you can add as many eyelets as you want, Converse high tops usually have eight, but for my tiny shoes I only did five, and left one of them unused (as I usually do on my Converse)
For the logo, just press out a little white pancake, and leave it blank, you can paint on the logo after baking. Put this on the "outside" of your shoes, I usually pick which side is more rounded, this also determines which shoe is which.
Roll out a very thin black snake and wrap it around the point where the base color and sole meet, this goes all around the shoe.
Then for the racing stripe roll two more smaller black snakes and put it between the front and back bumper.
For the bumper texture take a semi blunt thin tool and press in a criss cross texture onto the front bumper. On real converse the back bumper has the logo name, I did this on my monster's red converse, but I like how it looks with the same texture that the front bumper has. So I did that.
Step 5: Step Five: Laces
This is arguably the most difficult of this sculpt.
Roll out a long white thin snake and first put in the "under crosses" of the laces. If you look at a tied shoe these are the laces against the tongue connecting the crossing laces. I learned this from constantly drawing corsets.
Next do the top laces, for realism I usually have a straight lace on the bottom two eyelets and the rest are crossed, push the end of the laces into the eyelets using whatever you used to make them.
For the hanging laces, or where the laces are tied make sure they are coming from the under laces.
For tied laces, cross two tiny pieces to make the knot, make two loops and stick them to the knot, and make two loose ends stick out of the bottom, attach the sides of the main lace into the eyelets. The loops should droop down like real laces.
Now bake your shoes according to the directions on your clay, if it is air dry, make sure you let it dry completely.
Step 6: Step Six: Aging, and Details
For my shoes I wanted them to look worn and older.
Firstly I rubbed watery black paint into the crevices of the bumpers, wiping off the excess, and then added depth to the sides of the heel strip.
For the logo I just painted the star, you could paint All Star onto them, or a name or whatever you want, this little logo can be anything you want. I thought about doing a heart, but I'll save that for pink girly ones.
After the paint dried I got a big piece of newspaper and rubbed it all over the shoes, the ink from the newspaper rubs off onto the shoes making them look dirty and old. For this you can also use pastels, and make them look more dirty by using black and brown pastels all over. The newsprint mostly shows on the white parts.
Step 7: Step Seven: Glaze and Finish
I used clear acrylic sealer to seal my shoes and ended up using too much on one of my shoes, causing a little discoloration, but that kind of adds to the aged look.
Now your shoes are fabulous and ready to slip on!
If you want to bake them onto the feet of someone you should skip the sealing and painting steps until you've attatched them to their wearer.
I found these shoes I made fit perfectly on my fingers, and they look adorable.
I will probably eventually glue another cute monster into them to pair with my little red shoe's yella guy.
Use your shoes wisely!
Participated in the
Play With Clay Contest