- Sophie &Friends
Beads aren't the only thing that are given away during Mardi Gras! Some of our favorites are the sparkly, decorated shoes! We'll show you how to make them for your own Mardi Gras party -- or any other event where you want to have some glam!
Assorted shoes (any size, variety, or style)
Modge Podge (we've tried every type of glue out there, and this is the best)
Sponge-tipped paintbrushes (cheap ones are fine, just make sure you have plenty as they tend to disintegrate with use)
Standard glitter (at least 4 oz.; don’t get the expensive, ultra-fine glitter, you want the regular type)
Hot glue gun and glue sticks
Cardboard box (like a shirt/gift box, with a smooth bottom and no folded flaps; 1 per glitter color)
An assortment of embellishments: trims, laces, puffballs, old toys, bows, old Christmas ornaments, things you find under the seat cushions of your couch, etc.
Plastic tarps or paper to cover your working area
Newspaper or cardboard pieces (for drying shoes)
You will want to make these shoes over the course of 2 or 3 days. The first day or two will be the preparation days where you get the shoe base ready for embellishment. The following day will be spent in a glue-gunning frenzy.
Day 1: Prepping the shoes
Make sure to cover your work area with plastic, tarps, etc. Trust me on this one!
Take your shoes and give them a gentle cleaning so they are dust and dirt free. Remove any price tags.
Using your sponge brush, liberally apply Modge Podge to one area of the shoe at a time (you may want to start with the insole, or possibly the toe portion of the shoe).
Hold your Modge Podged shoe over your shirt box and liberally shake on one color of glitter. You will only want to work with one color at a time, letting that color dry before adding another color. In this way, you can actually make patterns with your glitter. Make sure that your glitter adheres to all of the Modge Podge. Don’t leave any white spots. If need be, place your shoe on a piece of newspaper, and pour the glitter contents of the shirt box back into the glitter container. Repeat step 3 until the shoe is completely covered.
Set your shoe aside to dry.
When the shoe is dry, repeat step numbers 2 & 3 on different areas of the shoe. Keep repeating these steps until the entire shoe is covered in glitter. This is your base shoe. Let your base completely dry (may take 24 to 48 hours, depending on the weather).
Day Two: Embellishing the shoes
Now, go to town! Using your glue gun, add whatever kind of crazy embellishments that you can gather. Don’t be shy; the crazier and wackier the shoe, the better it is!
At Mardi Gras, these shoes are worn like giant necklaces. If you wish, here's how to prep your shoes for a necklace attachment! Be sure to do this BEFORE decorating your shoe.
If you've got strappy shoes, simply tie a 3-foot length of ribbon from the ankle strap. For solid-backed shoes we use screw eyes/eye bolts. With a Phillips head screwdriver (or an electric drill -- but this requires an adult to do!), push a starter hole into the solid back of the shoe.
Holding the eye bolt with a pair of pliers, screw the bolt into place. Run a ribbon through the eye bolt to make into a necklace.
1. Don't try and "seal" your glitter with another layer of Modge Podge. It will dull the glitter and in some cases can even make cheaper glitter color run. The initial coat is all you need.
2. Sort your fun stuff into piles or containers according to size -- it will help when it's time to embellish.
For Mardi Gras, we make literally over a hundred of these shoes! Here's a very small selection of all the crazy shoes we make!