Tuesday, December 13, 2011

No-Slip Slippers

Since I made the moccasins for my Mimi the other day, I decided to create a few more pairs for Christmas gifts.  This time I decided to add some flower embellishments instead of fringe and beads.

It was my first time creating crochet flowers and leaves, but I think they turned out quite well. :)

With these slippers I learned a few new things and went back to fix some things on the moccasins.  For one, I wanted to add an inner sole, so I bought some simple insoles and sewed them in.  It added a little extra cushioning, and made them look a little more professional.

I also decided to give the slippers a no-slip bottom for safety.  The last thing in the world I'd want is for my sweet little Mimi to be wearing these and slip and hurt herself, so I did some research online to find a good solution.  I read lots of suggestions and watched a few YouTube videos, and I ended up combining several things to create my own method.

I think what I did turned out well, so I decided to share it with you guys in case anyone wants to create no-slip or non-skid crochet or knit slippers.  

Lots of people online suggested a product called Plastidip.  It's original purpose was to make the handles of tools non-slip, but many people have begun to use it in the crafting world.  

However, no one gave a really successful step-by-step tutorial.  I watched one YouTube video in which the woman slopped the stuff on with a spatula and it looked like a big mess, but seemed functional in the end.  I thought it was worth a try, but I wanted to tweak her method a bit.

First I traced my foot on some foam board and cut it out.  When inserted into the slipper, it helped keep the surface stretched and flat so the surface was easy to coat.

Next, I made a template or stencil for the no-slip area on the bottom of the slippers out of cardstock paper.  I did a simple slender foot shape, but you could easily to hearts or dots or paw prints or anything else you could dream up as long as you have the patience to cut the shapes out.  

On a covered work space, I attached the stencils to the slipper bottoms with a few small circles of tape.  Then, I used an old paint brush (old or cheap paint brushes are essential because it will RUIN the brush)  to paint within the stencil.

I painted one coat, waited thirty minutes, and then painted another semi-thick coat.

Four hours later, the slippers were ready to use with their new no-slip bottoms.

Hope this helps someone to make some fabulous non-skid slippers. :)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Moccasins for Mimi

I just finished another Christmas gift, and this one I can share with you.  I made some crochet moccasins for my sweet Mimi (my mom's mom).  Since she doesn't have a computer or the internet, I thought it would be okay to show you guys her gift before Christmas... so don't tell her! :)

Mimi isn't able to get outside very much, so my normal crochet hats and scarves wouldn't be a very good gift for her.  She does enjoy watching TV in her comfy chair, though, and she's usually wearing cozy socks or slippers while doing so.  With that in mind, I decided to branch out a little and try something different.  I decided to make some booties/slippers.

I hopped on over to my favorite crochet resource Ravelry.com, and I found a great pattern.  I wasn't sure when I decided to try it, but now I'm thinking it turned out quite well. After completing the crochet pattern, I thought it needed a little something extra, so I added the beads as a final touch.  Pretty soon, I might experiment some more and make myself a pair to lounge around in. 

What do you guys think?  A good present for a grandmother?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

In the Holiday Spirit

I don't know about you guys, but I'm getting more excited about Christmas by the minute.  I've almost finished my Christmas shopping, I'm gearing up to go home for a couple of weeks, and I've put up a few Christmas decorations here in Hawaii.  

I must admit that I get a little jealous of all my friends back home with houses they own and big beautiful Christmas trees.  In our little temporary home here in Hawaii, I can't have a big tree like I really want.  Mine is just a little three foot tree that sits on a table.  I try to make the most of it though... lots of glitter and lots of sparkle!

I also added a little color outside my house by putting some lights around my door.  It makes me smile every evening when I come home.  :)

What about you guys?  Do you have a big tree, a little tree, a live tree, a pink tree?  Lights on your house?  What decorations put you in the Christmas spirit?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

New Artwork!

Hello all!  I've been busy continuing to work on my Christmas gifts, and I've also finally completed a pet portrait that a friend asked me to do.  I thought I'd share it with you guys today. 

I felt so honored when I was asked to do this.  This special dog recently lost her battle with cancer, and my friend wanted to give her owners a portrait as a gift.  As soon as I received the photo to work from, I knew that Roxie had been a special dog.  Her eyes seemed to smile, and she looked so happy to have been splashing in the water at the beach.  

I hope her owners like it and will always be reminded of her sweet spirit.

What do you guys think?