Monday, April 4, 2011

If the Shoe Fits, Wear it

Oh jeebus, I know.  My second pun-filled blog post title.  I think I'm barred from writing about shoes.  But they're done!  The TOMS shoes for the fundraiser (tomorrow!) are done!  This was not a design that just came to me.  I'm used to working on big surfaces and these were tiny.  And that scared the tar out me.  But on Friday I got an email asking me for my picture, my bio, and my title for the design and it occurred to me that I should really, really get moving on this whole "decorate shoes for a fundraiser" thing.  That thing that I had promised to do a week earlier.  That thing that kept taunting me.  At least it was on the top of my pile of projects, so that was some sort of progress.  Kind of. 

But as a former fundraiser for a Boys & Girls Club, I get these events.  I get the importance and I get the heart-stopping stomach-clenching horror of an auction item not coming through.  And I couldn't be "that" person.  Not this time folks.  So Saturday I dreamed, and Sunday I painted, cut and glued like my life depended on it! And by Sunday afternoon I had a pair of sticky yet completely decorated pair of shoes!  Have you seen enough exclamation points yet?!?  Don't worry, there are more!!!

So let me refresh your memory.  Here are the shoes fresh out of their box:

Cute, and surprisingly comfortable.  They're TOMS shoes - a great company that donates a pair of shoes for every pair purchased.  LOVE this.  Lack of shoes contributes to a heck of a lot of problems, one of which is parasite infection, which I will not be posting pictures of.  Feel free to watch "Monsters Inside Me" for more on parasites.  But for more on the "One Day Without Shoes" event, the TOMS website is the place to go.

But back to the point, I started with a vague notion that I wanted to include flowers.  It's April, it's still dark and frozen here in Vermont, and I want flowers.  Badly.  So why not paint them?  With tubes of acrylic paint and textile medium in hand, I went to it.

I wasn't thrilled, to say the least.  Part of the problem is that I'm a crappy painter.  It's just not my medium.  So I threw that plan out the window and decided on digging into my stash of vintage fabric I've salvaged from other re-do projects. 

Yes.  Much better.  But far from perfect.  So I tried painting on a few flowers.  What, you say?  Painting?  I thought you just dismissed painting.  And I would have, if I'd be thinking and not just doing.  So here was the sad attempt a painting flowers:

Um, yeah.  Not good.  Oh hey, what's that?  The beautiful scarlet velvet I salvaged off the sleeves of a 1960's dress I revamped?  Perfect.  And petals were born.

Better, but not finished.  Time for buttons as flower centers and gold leaf to cover the visible white from my painting fiasco.  And hey, a few gold dots for good measure!  (see?  I told you there'd be more exclamation points!!!)

And so here they are, in all their gold leafed, scarlet velvet, herringbone wool bark, button stamen glory.  I like them.  And I really hope whoever buys them tomorrow night does too!

So tomorrow, April 5th, 2011.  Go to ECCO Clothes for Women and Men on Church Street in Burlington from 6-8pm and bid high and bid often.  Kids need shoes. 


  1. This just brought tears to my eyes! Thank you so much! Can't wait for tonight!

  2. They're just gorgeous! I love knowing how they evolved to become what they are now. I hope the auction goes well!!!