Give ‘em The Slip (DIY: Recycle Old Jeans Into Jean Slippers)

I was looking around for more ideas for my Christmas gift list and found this “How To Make Jean Slippers” over at wikiHow. I love the way these look so I thought I would try them out. I have this great pair of jeans with rhinestones on the back pockets and they would be perfect for a fun pair of slippers. Gather up your old holey jeans and try this DIY craft for some awesome one-of-a-kind Christmas .
external image 180px-slippers.jpg

Here is what you need:
  • Pair of Jeans
  • Tracing paper
  • 1/2 yard of 1/2 inch thick foam
  • puffy fabric paint
  • thread
  • scissors
  • pins
  • measuring tape
  • pencil
  1. Slide your feet into the back pockets of the jeans. The pockets should fit your feet comfortably. Cut the pockets off and trim any extra fabric from the inside.
  2. Measure the length of the bottom of your foot and add 1 inch. Measure the width of your foot and add 1 inch. Using these measurements, draw a rectangle on tracing paper. Cut it out and round off the corners. This is your pattern for the soles of the slippers.
  3. To make the soles, trace around the pattern twice onto the foam and four times onto some denim from the jeans. Cut these pieces out.
  4. Sandwich a piece of foam between two pieces of denim. Pin the pieces together. Do the same with the other pieces.
  5. Lay one pocket on each sole so the bottom of the pocket is at the top of the sole. Pin the pockets to the soles lining up the outside egdes as neatly as you can.
  6. Sew around the outside edge of each slipper 1/2 inch form the edge. Remove the pins.
  7. Using puffy paint draw squiggly lines on the bottom of of each slipper to make them nonslip. Allow to dry.

Denim slippers to make yourself
Here's a little sewing project, for a weekend morning, and an endearing way to re-cycle something old into something new...
external image Untitled-1+copy.jpgAll you need is a pair of old cast-off jeans, some wadding and a ribbon to decorate. The rough and softly worn colors of the denim combined with sweet pink gingham bows gives them an irresistibly stylish and cozy charm. Suggested for a sewer of intermediate level. And not to rush through it, but to take your time, and hand-stitch the details, to give a beautiful, professional finish.
external image 2+slippers+copy.jpgList of Materials:
1 pair of jeans (any size)
½” x ¼” yard wadding
A piece of thin cardboard (not the corrugated type), about 12” x 12”
**Click here**, to print out the 2 pattern piecesNote: Pattern is a ladies, medium adult size, or a size 8/38. To check the size, stand barefoot on the sole pattern. The edge of the pattern should extend about ¾” beyond your foot. Enlarge or reduce proportionally as needed (on a Xerox machine or with pattern making technique) to fit your foot.
5/8” x 1 yard pink and white gingham ribbon
White and blue thread (choose a blue shade that matches your denim)
Scissors, straight pins, sewing needle, pencil to mark notches, sewing machine

Cut the pieces:
1. Cut the legs off your jeans and cut the leg open along the inside seam. Press flat. Lay them flat on the table. Note: Notice and plan the color variations of the denim when you cut your pieces. I cut the pieces so that the uppers are in faded denim and the soles in the darker denim, and matched the shadings on the two slippers.
2. Cut 1 piece of the sole and 1 piece of the upper out of one leg. Mark notches with a pencil on backside. Flip the pattern pieces over and cut 1 more of each piece and mark notches.
3. Repeat for the other slipper.
4. Cut 2 pieces of the sole out of the wadding.
5. Cut 2 pieces of the upper pattern out of the wadding following the reduced cutting line marked on the pattern.
6. Cut 2 pieces of the sole from the cardboard, cutting 5/8” smaller all around.
7. Machine wash and dry the 4 pieces of denim uppers, to get frayed edges. Clip any really long frayed bits.
8. Press all denim pieces.

Sew It Together:

external image upper.jpg1. Sandwich the wadding upper between 2 denim uppers, with the right sides of the denim facing out. Pin, baste and stitch together, ¼” from the edge, around the perimeter, with the blue thread.
2. Stitch a running stitch between the notches (later it will be pulled to form gathers.)external image basting.jpg3. Stitch a running stitch between the top notches on all 4 denim soles (later they will be pulled to form gathers.)
external image stich+sole.jpg
4. Align one denim sole, right side up, on top of a wadding sole. Pin together. Baste from the top notch, down the side, and up to the other top notch. Remove pins.
external image final+stitching.jpg 5. Pin the denim upper on the sole, aligning bottom edge on bottom notches. Baste from notch to notch. Remove pins.
6. Now pin a denim sole on top, back side up. Baste from top notch, down side and around to top notch. Remove pins. Machine sew along basting line. Remove basting.
7. Clip seam allowance.
8. Turn it inside out. (You have to wiggle it a bit to get everything through the toe.) Then take something long like a chopstick, and slip it inside to push the seam allowance firmly to nudge it into a nice smooth edge along the seam, especially along the curve of the heel.
9. Slip the cardboard inside, between the two pieces of denim. (The cardboard will be the lower part of your slipper, and your foot will rest on the soft wadding.) It can be a bit of a struggle to slip the cardboard inside, but even if you fold it a bit in order to squeeze it through, don’t worry, it will re-flatten out and be supportive.
10. Now repeat with the other set of pieces.

Gather The Toe:
external image close+up2+copy.jpg1. Pull the running stitch to from soft gathers on the bottom denim sole so the toe curves gently around the card board edge. Knot the thread. Pull the running stitch to form gathers along the top sole and upper so that they align with the shape of the lower sole and knot threads. With the seam allowance neatly tucked inside, pin the toe closed. Baste, remove pins, and with the blue thread, hand sew toe closed securely with little back-stitches.
Note: Take your time to sew neat little stitches and to keep the gathers evenly distributed. It is this attention to detail that will give your slippers a professional finish.
external image sideview+copy.jpg2. Repeat with the other slipper.

Adorn Your Slippers:
external image bow.jpg 1. Cut the ribbon in 4 pieces of equal length. Take 2 pieces, pin on the slipper front, about 2 ½” apart with a ½” fold back. Hand stitch in place along folded edge. Tie into a snug bow. Cut ribbon ends at a diagonal.
2. Repeat with the other slipper.
Note: You can make many decorative variations on these slippers. Adorn them with saucy feathers and beads, with pretty buttons, different fabric mixes or fabric flowers. Just search through your sewing basket to find the right combination that reflects your personal style.

Knot all threads securely.

Voila! You’re finished!