Introduction: Upcycle Dull Shoes Into Amazing Party Sandals!

About: Not much to say here, I'm 26, currently working as an english teacher through skype and keeping myself busy with craftyness. Currently I'm workling on my BIGGEST DIY project ever... my thesis XD I consider my…

About a month ago, a friend of mine got married. I was to be a bridesmaid so I saved up all my money to be able to pay for the expenses this meant (dress, present, purse, trip...)... but uh-oh! I ran out of cash before I could get a fashionable pair of shoes. All I had left were about 30 pesos and a candle... so I decided to upgrade an old pair of sandas I had into amazing party shoes. This is my first instructable, so hope you find it useful!

Sorry if the pictures are a little blurry and a little dark, since this is my first instructable I took the photos with my cellphone and didn't realize my light sucked. Hope it can be seen though!

Step 1: Materials!

What you'll need:

- A pair of shoes or sandas you want to upgrade (I used some plain silver sandals I bought for my sister's grad party. They're pretty boring, thus I never used them.)
- Fabric of your choice (since my dress was purple, I chose some purple and lilac ribbon, 6cm wide and 1 meter long. Make sure you don't have too little fabric or you'll run out of material!)
- Beads (I chose pearls because the combination was awesome, and also cheap! a 10 peso bracelet  got me 20 pearls so it was great)
- Fleece or felt (it doesn't have to be much, we just need it for the back of our flowers and to make sure the sewing doesn't hurt your feet)
- Nylon thread, not too thick
- Regular thread, the colour of our fabric
- Needle
- Silicone (can be liquid or hot, doesn't matter)
- A lighter or candle (to avoid fabric unraveling)
- A circular object (can be a lid or a button) to trace circles
- Chalk or a pencil
- Scissors
- And good light!

Step 2: Trace!

The technique we're using to make this is called tsumami kanzashii flowers (it's japanese... because japan has all these awesome things to make with little material and they always look cute!) I'm posting the steps one-by-one but if you get lost at some point, find me confusing or the pictures are WAY too dark, I'll leave you the youtube link where I found the instructions:

Okay so what we need to do first is cut circles on our fabric. Each circle is a petal of our flower so make sure you cut out enough circles. Trace carefully on to the fabric using your circular object and chalk. You can also use a piece of soap, it leaves a white mark that can be easily erased. Don't worry if you leave marks, they wont be noticeable once we finish.

When you have your circles traced, cut them out carefully. I'm doing 6-petal flowers so I cut out 12 petals, enough for 2 flowers.

Step 3: Fire! (optional)

Since my ribbon is the kind that starts unraveling (in spanish we call it "deshilachar" but I can't remember the word for that in english) I'm burning the edges with fire, so this is where your lighter or candle comes in handy. If your fabric isn't the kind to get stringy or just bursts into flames if near any source of light (including the T.V) skip this step... of avoid using that fabric, shoes that burst into flames when photographed are never nice.

Step 4: Fold and Fold

Okay so these is where things get a little complicated:

- Take one circle and fold it in half.
- Fold it in half again
- Once you fold it twice, you need to pinch the middle of your quarter, just like you're going to fold it again

got it? okay, let's move on then...

Step 5: Petals

Once you have your pinched quarters, you'll notice you'll have two little edges. Pull thoseedges into the pinch, so that you end up with your quarter pressed under your fingers, forming a small petal with two folds inside: this is your petal!

Okaye so refresh:

- Fold your circle in half
- Fold in half again
- Pinch the middle of your quarter
- Pull edges into pinch

Ta-da! you have a petal! Now insert the petal into a needle with thread that corresponds to your colour flower and proceed to fold all the petals.

Step 6: Making the Flower-shape

Once you finish with all your circles, thread them so you'll end up with a sort of chain. Make sure you place all the petals the right way up and that the needle goes right in the middle of the fold, so that no petal will come undone. Now, pull your needle towards the end of the thread and tie a tight know so that your chain forms a circle. Tath's your flower! you can also give it a sseond thread through the petals so that it's stronger, that's up to you!

Step 7: Gluing the Fleece

Take your fleece and cut a circle that matches the inner part of your flower. Put a drop of glue on your flower and stick the fleece there. This will help us sew the beads and stitch the flower on the shoe once we're done.

Step 8: Beading the Flower

Now comes the fun part. Take your beads (if you don't have beads you can use buttons, sequin or even bottlecaps) and sew them on to the opposite side of your flower, where we don't have fleece. This will make the beads the center of your flower. if it's hard to sew you can also add fleece to both sides and just choose one to sew on, it's up to you! you can also glue the beads if you want. In this case, I threaded them with nylon so that they woudn't fall off during the wedding.

Step 9: Optional: Square Flower

If, by any chance, you don't find a circular lid that can give you a nice size, or your ribbon is too thin for your circumference (like it happened to me) you can also do the tsumami flowers with squares. Just cut out enough squares (they don't have to be exact, but they need to be all the same size) and proceed like with the circles: fold in an angle, fold again, pinch the center and pull the edges inside the pinch. Thread all the petals... but wait!!! don't tie it up yet!

Step 10: But Wait!

If you decided to make the square flowers, you might have noticed by now that the circle is kind of sticking up. That's because of the angles the square has. Since we can't work with a sticky-center, we need to cut these. Before you tie your flower in circle, take your scissors ans snip away this angles. They'll be on both sides so just choose one side and cut off the edges, making sure you don't cut the thread that ties the petals together.

Once done, you can proceed to sticking another fleece circle to the center of the flower and then thread the beads. In my case, I also burned the corners I just cut out, for extra-safety.

Step 11: Putting It Together!

Okay so now that you have your flowers finished, all we need to do is add them to the shoe! you can either choose to glue them on (I reccomend using extra-strong glue if you go for this one, we don't want you dropping flowers all over the dance floor!) or thread them with nylon string. I chose the second option just to make sure it was all safely placed and it woudn't fall apart.

TIP: before you start sewing or gluing, check out where will your flowers go so that you don't end up sticking them crooked or too close together!

Step 12: Some Extra- Comfort

Okay so you did it! you sew your flowers on and when you placed on you superb new shoes, the nylon string began scratching against your delicate feet skin! Since we don't want your feet looking like they have a rash on them every time you put your shoes on, you can stick some of the remaining fleece you had on the inner-party of your shoes to avoid it. It won't be noticeable and It'll even give an extra protection to your stitching, so that the flowers won't move or fall ever.

Step 13: Finished!

Congratulations! if you made it here, it means you succesfully managed to make  a new pair of shoes out of an old one! it also means my first instructable was a success and that my steps are, -if not easy-, at least readable . As you can see, this flowers are easy to make and can be used to decorate virtually anything. You can make a stylish brooch for yout coat, or add a feather and place it on a bobby-pin to create a hair decoration... or even place it on a necklace! it's up to you to use it as you want and believe me, everyone will be amazed when they find out you made it!

At least that was my reaction at the wedding!

Thanks for reading! rate and comment please (I'm a beginner so comments, questions and custructive criticism will be appreciated! hope my grammar is okay, I double-checked ofr mistakes before uploading this!) 

See you next time, space cowboy!