Thursday, September 12, 2013

My DIY Designer Sandals

I've had a pair of sandals from Target for a couple of years now. They're comfy enough, they're the only flat "summer" shoes I have that aren't flip flops, and they are falling apart. Well, the sandals themselves are in decent shape, but they have all these rhinestones on the top, and at least a fourth of them have fallen out.

I noticed how bad of shape they were in when I was at a pool party earlier this summer, and someone found a large rhinestone by the side of the pool, and everyone started checking their earrings and wedding rings, and it finally occured to me that it probably fell out of my shoe and not someone else's jewelry. When I got home, I placed my sandals in the Goodwill pile, and started doing some online browsing for some new ones.

Then, the other day I saw these beautiful parrot sandals on Cupcakes and Cashmere, and when I asked who made them, I was informed that they were Miu Miu. They're kinda pricey, but man, they sure are pretty.

Temps are still hovering in the 90s in Texas, so I am still in need of some sandals. I was letting my thoughts marinate for a few days — wanting pretty sandals, not wanting to spend a lot — when it hit me. I've already re-vamped another old pair of shoes that are still holding up, why not see if I can breathe some new life into my old sandals? The straps and soles are still in pretty good shape, it's just those darn rhinestones!

Out of the Goodwill pile they came. I looked to see how the rhinestone bits were being held on, and it turns out they were basically just glued down. So I used some scissors to pry all the rhinestones off, and was left with only these sewn-on black circles. Not a problem. I can cover those bad boys up.

The more I looked at my inspiration photo, the more I really, really wanted parrots on my feet. It became a full-out obsession. But because the part of the sandal that the rhinestones covered is so wide, a parrot on its own wouldn't have covered the whole area. But I wasn't ready to give up, so I looked for bird appliqués while doing a little brainstorming.

This one was my favorite, but at 6-plus inches, it was too long. via

With so many cute, small appliqué options, I was bummed about my fat-topped sandals and how they were not conducive for sleek, sequin-y birds. And then it hit me: parrots live in the jungle! And bee-tee-dubs, since I did faux flowers for my wedding, I still have A LOT of greenery and fake flowers in my craft closet. I CAN GET PARROTS AND I WILL COVER UP THE TOP OF THE SANDAL WITH LEAVES, AND THE PARROTS CAN LIVE IN THE JUNGLE. YAY!

A quick order of my chosen birds, an inventory of my available leafery, and I was ready to have my very own pair o' parrots.

I layered on some leaves with a hot glue gun, and then stuck the parrots right on top. It took less time than a whole episode of Bar Rescue.

I'm really proud of how they turned out! I've already gotten to wear them too, with good results. Let's hope for a couple more weeks of warm weather!

Grand total: $19.97. That's $6.98 for the parrot appliqués, and I'm pretty sure the sandals were originally $12.99.

Would you wear parrot sandals? Do you ever "fix" your own shoes or clothing?


  1. Now that is creative!! I have painted a pair of shoes that were fabric and showing a few too many scuffs on the outside--I wear them alot--it's fun to take something that was on it's last legs and turn it into something still usable and totally different!

  2. These are amazing! I saw those parrot sandals, too, and yours are fabulous! I think you should really attempt to paint those tap shoes pink now! Love, love, love your new sandals!

    I'm not very crafty, but I do make cut-offs from my old jeans, shorten or lengthen purse straps as needed, and even cut sleeves off my tops sometimes. I think it's fun to give something old a new look.

    Seriously love these sandals!

  3. These are so creative and cute! I'd be afraid the leaves would tickle my feet though :)

  4. These are amazing and what a great idea. I'd never have thought of this. The parrots are super cute and would make me smile whenever I looked at them - I want!

  5. They turned out to be so cute. I really loved your creativity and inspiration that you shared with us via your DIY blog.
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