If you have any of the following situations, these shoes are essential:
A living space with wood or any hard surface
A baby who starts to walk
Because these shoes completely prevent slips and falls on hard floor which discourage baby learning to walk, can even injure baby and break parents' heart; they are warm in winter and cool in summer; they are skin soft, super comfortable, does not hinder baby's foot development; when made the right fit, they stay on baby's feet as long as you want.
I don't know who is the owner of the idea of using suede leather bottom on baby shoes, nothing else beats it when it comes to prevent slips and falls on hard floor. There are many brands of this kind of shoes, usually pricey for me. My daughter went through shoe sizes in a matter of a month. After buying the first pair for my daughter, I started to make them myself. After making them for my daughter, now I make them for my son.
So make them for your sons if you had no daughters, if you had no daughters or sons, make them as a gift to your nephew, niece, grandchildren, friend's children. After all, they only cost an afternoon or evening, some suede leather scraps (think about old leather clothes or bags if you don't have any leftover from a previous project. I found mine on eBay and dyed it myself.) A sewing machine helps greatly. Needle for sewing leather is a must. Thread for leather material is recommended (I used regular all purpose thread). Two pieces of 1//4" elastic of 5.5" long each.
Ok, please follow the following steps to make them.
Step 1: Download the Pattern Pieces File and Cut the Fabric
This pattern is for 9-12 month old and the finished shoes have 5.5" insole.
Because of the applique design, I used 3 colors of leather.
It's better to use a relative stiff non fraying fabric for the shoe front facing which I don't have, I used the same leather material.
For each pattern piece, cut one fabric for left shoe and flip the pattern piece and cut for the right shoe.
Always mark the center of each cut fabric piece when applicable.
Step 2: Shoe Front
The work is all in the shoe front.
Start with punching the hole for elephant eye. I don't have a tiny hole puncher so I pulled through a machine needle and used x knife to remove bits of leather around the needle shaft.
Use seam ripper to make the ear flap slit and sew the ear flap under with 1/8 inch from the slit edge.
Make the elastic slits and sew the cover on.
Sew the elephant appliqué in the center of shoe front.
With right side together, sew shoe front and facing together with 1/8 inch seam allowance.
Turn the right side out, top stick as close as possibe to the seam.
Matching front center, with right side together, sew shoe front to shoe sole. A very helpful tip: start from center, stitching forward to the sides.
Step 3: Shoe Back
Stitch back contrast to shoe back, again starting from center and stitching to the two ends is a smart seamstress. If you didn't you'll know why.
Matching back center, with right side together, sew shoe back to sole.
Step 4: Ankle Elastic
Insert two small safety pins at the two ends of the ankle elastic, pull the elastic on one end through shoe back elastic casing and shoe front elastic slits, overlap the ends for 1", keep it in place with one safety pin, try the Fit on your baby and adjust the length of elastic if needed. Secure the elastic ends.
Turn the shoe right side out.
There you already have it! Truly made of love!
Please vote it for Winter Wearables Contest and Homemade Gifts Contest if you like it!