Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sweet Sweater Slipper Tutorial!

2012-02-19

It is COLD in our house.  About 66* on a good day.  Every time I pick up my sweet baby his tiny feet are so cold!  And he will not keep socks on.  So I decided to make him some slippers today.  This is how I did it:

_MG_6464

I got my felted sweater scraps and found the thickest one I had. I figured the bottom would be best made from a really thick sweater to keep the cold floor off his little feet.  (And it’s nice to have something to do with those ones that won’t make monsters, or hats because they have just felted up too thick!)  Other things I needed: a pair of really good scissors, some 1/4 inch elastic, my sewing machine, buttons, puff paint, and tags or ribbon.

These slippers do not require turning.  They don’t need lining.  They are just wonderfully warm, natural slippers for your kiddos feet!

First I cut out the pieces.  I made a pattern from the bottom of Luke’s foot (you could also use a shoe), and then cut a piece of the bottom edge of a sweater (the ribbing part) for the back of the slipper.  I made sure it was wide enough to reach from the floor to Luke’s ankle so it would cover the entire heal of his foot.

_MG_6465

To keep it on his chubby little legs I used the 1/4 inch elastic cut just a little bit smaller than the ribbing.

_MG_6466

I attached the elastic first, stretching as I went to the top edge of the ribbing (it doesn’t need to gather much, as you can see). 

I folded the ribbing in half to find the center.  I pinned that to the back center of the soul and  using that as a point of reference, I sewed the piece onto the soul of the slipper.  It doesn’t have to be perfect.  In fact, it doesn’t even have to be precise… it will cross and gather where it needs to and will not show if you make small mistakes here.

 _MG_6468

I used a pattern for the top of the shoe.  This pattern in fact, modified so that I didn’t need seam allowances (so a bit thinner, and a bit shorter) because I didn’t need to turn the shoe at all.  I cut the piece and then trimmed it until it looked right pinned on to the slipper. (Seriously, that is my favorite part about working with felted wool… it doesn’t fray at all.  So you can use it like you would craft felt, but it’s oh-so-much better!)

At this point I added little tags I had back from my clothes making days to the side of the slipper. 

_MG_6470

I thought they were cute and it makes it clear which slipper goes on which foot.  Winking smile

_MG_6478

I trimmed everything down a bit almost to the seam. (Again, the best part about felted sweaters is that they are felt!  No fraying!)

The next step was to connect the back with the top.  I found the spot where they all crossed over and then safety pinned it and tried it on Luke’s foot.  It worked perfectly!  I then hand sewed the spot really well and trimmed any extra spots inside the slipper.  I added a button to cover the anchor spot:

_MG_6513

The last step came after I had tried them on him.  I put them on his feet, let him walk around and the second he stepped on the wood floor his legs came out from under him like he was on ice and he fell down hard.  Poor baby!  So while he napped today I put puff paint on the bottom of his slippers so they didn’t slip on all our wood floors. 

_MG_6516

It worked great. 

I think I am going to make them for my bigger kids too… They turned out SO cute! 

_MG_6496

And here are my ‘in action’ photos… which are horrible… cuz they are from my iPhone in the dark before I put this little guy to bed… but here you are anyway cuz he’s just SO cute!

419197_2369253690938_1838365910_1397036_1659826528_n[1]

On his feet (don’t you just love those chubby legs??)

396519_2369257651037_1838365910_1397039_839354975_n[1]

Him walking back and forth. 

After he kept falling the first time I tried them on him, he was really nervous about trying to walk in them again.  When he finally tried and didn’t fall he was SO excited he ran back and forth in across the living room over and over again. 

425443_2369259811091_1838365910_1397041_1165598917_n[1]

He would stop, lean down and inspect his new duds and then get up and run across the wood floor again.  It was adorable!

_MG_6583

Happy crafting!!

12 comments:

Mark and Amy said...

Adorable!

Kelly @ Creating a Family Home said...

Thanks for this tutorial! I'm definitely making these for my two-year-old. I was going to knit him a pair of slippers and then felt them, but I haven't even gotten around to felting my gauge swatch. I just didn't feel like designing something myself! I don't have a sewing machine yet, so maybe I'll just try making these bad boys by hand. Thanks!!

Mama Goose said...

I am going to make these. You make it seem so easy! I have a few old sweaters saved.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Katie said...

My friend just gave me 2 sweaters to felt, I am totally going to do this!

Krista said...

Thank you! Exactly what I was looking for.

Tutus & Tea Parties said...

I just might be able to handle this! Love it!

I'd love if you could link up and share: http://tutusandteaparties.blogspot.com/2012/03/pinteresting-party-week-29.html

Tutus & Tea Parties said...

I just wanted to pop back in and let you know I featured you at this week's party: http://tutusandteaparties.blogspot.com/2012/03/pinteresting-party-week-30.html

Thank you for linking up and hope to see you back! It got 32 repins and 8 likes from my pin. :)

Kimberly :) said...

I saw your post via Pinterest and just subscribed to your blog. I wanted you to know that you inspired me to dive into the world of sweater-felting and bootie-making! I freehanded a hat and some of your tiny ugg boot lookalikes for my best friend's brand-new granddaughter, Scarlett. I wish I could figure out how to attach a picture here. I looked on your website but couldn't find an email. If you can to tell me how, I'd be happy to share a photo of our collaboration! Thank you and please keep posting. :)

Juli said...

This may sound silly but how do you felt a sweater and it there certian types of sweaters that felt better than others?

Val in the Rose Garden said...

Hi Juli! Not a silly question at all. :) We all have to start somewhere.

To felt a sweater, I throw mine in a hot wash washing machine with a bit of extra soap for at least three cycles. There are tons of tutorials online for solving problems while doing this... although I haven't found the need for one as long as I have 90% or more wool in my sweater that I am trying to felt. Expect to clean your washer drum after you felt, however, as the process pulls a lot of fluff from the sweater. But I have found the end results are always worth the extra elbow greese. ;)

Happy felting!

Blessings,

Val

Linda Pihlquist Beisel said...

Love this project. May i ask...what is puff paint, and where do i get it? Thanks for helping me keep my monkies toes warm.

Val in the Rose Garden said...

@Linda Pihlquist Beisel - Puf Paint is the basic craft fabric paint that comes in the tubes at a craft store like Michael's or JoAnn's. Here is a link to the some on Amazon just in case:

http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=tulip+puffy+paint&tag=googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=35069518164&hvpos=1t1&hvexid=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=787526217213555822&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=b&hvdev=c&ref=pd_sl_4k368mtbhq_b

It sure made a difference! Good luck!