Whenever my brother-and-sister-in-law host a holiday get-together, it’s always a hoot. They go out of their way to make it interesting with games and competitions – for the little kids and big ones (aka the adults) alike. This year, my B-I-L and S-I-L introduced an ‘ugly sock contest’ to the festivities – a twist on ugly Christmas sweaters. I don’t know how they came up with the idea but I’m always up to a fun challenge so was eager to get started.
I made these co-ordinating ugly socks for both me and Hubs. I started with some festive dollar store toe socks and an empty lip balm container (the one I actually used for myself was shorter than the one shown in the second pic).
Toe socks - the uglier the better. Try to find ones that have the festive design on the bottom so it doesn't clash with the elements that are being added.
Red pen (tip only)
Old lipstick or lip balm tubes and/or lipstick pen
Vinyl letters/numbers (optional)
Glue (super glue gel or all purpose)
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Step 1: Raid Your Junk Drawers
You can literally use whatever you happen to have lying around to get the same effect; use whatever works.
I used an empty lip balm container combined with the tip of a red pen (the part that screws off). I fastened them together with double-faced tape (don’t use glue if you want to use the pen again afterwards!). I also used the bottom half of a pen shaped like a lipstick, red tip and all, (shown above in the 2nd pic) to fashion a second rocket-like object (one for each of us).
In retrospect, the lipstick pen would make a great stocking stuffer. But I chose to use it ‘outside of the stocking’ - quite literally!
Step 2: Assemble
I sewed a piece of velcro below the first toe on the top side of the sock. Shown in the picture above is my sock; the velcro is on the left sock. For Hubs, I attached the velcro to his right sock.
I wrapped the lip balm container with adhesive glitter vinyl (you can use whatever metallic substrate you have - even tin foil, but you'll have to glue it). I didn't bother to wrap the lipstick pen used for the other rocket because it was already made of metal. To make it even more rocket-like, I also fashioned the burning fuel flare out of more glitter vinyl. I positioned it coming out the bottom end and glued it on.
Then I added a random ID number onto the body using old leftover Letraset from years gone by (SN-2 for Hubs and CN-5 for me).
Step 3: Extra Security
Flip the rockets over to the back side and glue another piece of velcro onto the underside of the rocket flare. You'll be using the hook side that corresponds with the fuzzy piece previous sewn beneath the toe.
Knot a piece of elastic cord into a circle. Right above where you just glued the velcro, glue the elastic on. This will help stabliize the rocket once it’s on the sock. The embellishment tends to be top heavy and the elastic prevents it from flopping around too much, especially when you have to walk!
Step 4: Velcro Parts Together
Wrap the elastic that's now glued onto the rocket around the big toe. Here, it’s shown from the back. Flip the rocket around and bring the two pieces of velcro together to connect them.
Step 5: Mirror Image If Doing This With a Partner
The first pic shows how it looks once attached. If you're doing this with a partner, as I did, don't forget to mirror what you just did on the opposite foot. The second picture shows a left foot for me and a right foot for Hubs.
I got the smaller rocket because, as Hubs always jokes, my feet are like stumps (my toes barely even fill the toe socks)! Hubs, on the other hand, (er, I mean foot!) has piano toes so he can sport the bigger one :).
Step 7: Vote for Us - and Don't Forget to Kiss Under the 'Missle Toe'!
Above are the final ugly toe socks as modeled by me and Hubs. If you haven’t already figured it out, it’s ‘missle toe’! Get it? It’s a play on ‘Mistletoe‘.
I got a lot of traction out of this project when my husband's family hosted this first ugly sock contest at our pre-Christmas get-together. I hope it becomes a tradition! Everyone appreciated the silly humour. Don’t tell (shhh), but I’ve also turned it into this year’s Christmas card!
A Bit About Mistletoe
Did you know the tradition of hanging Mistletoe goes back to the times of the ancient Druids and is supposed to bring good luck to the household? ‘Missile toe’ didn’t bring us luck in the contest however: we came in just a foot or two behind the winner. The grand winner was our hostess’ father who cut off the toes of his socks and bared his naked toes. It was a consensus that nobody could top that for ugly! If this was a humour contest, I’m still not sure if we would have won hands down (or should I say feet down?): those ugly toes peering through the socks for all the world to gaze upon were pretty funny too. I must have been having way too much fun at the party (as it should be) because unfortunately I didn’t photograph the winner and other contenders :(
Take the Concept One Step Further
If you feel like being adventurous, why not take the ugly Christmas sock concept one step further: make ugly Christmas stockings to adorn the mantle! Personalize them for each family member and see if everyone can guess which one is theirs! Or have the kids make them for each other if you really want to get everyone in on the fun!
This is an entry in the
Ugly Sweater Speed Challenge