Sunday, January 20, 2013

Women Fly When Men Aren't Looking...

Leslie here.  Years ago I remember seeing a friend of mine wearing a t-shirt that said these words,
"Women Fly When Men Aren't Looking".  I was amused and captivated by the statement and I guess it got filed in my memory bank!
To create my shoes I chose a set of black sueded stilettos, sky high.  I can tell you my days of wearing shoes such as these are OVER.  Personally, I have a serious shoe fetish and view many of them as sculpture.
I've been meaning to play around with sari silk yarn as a means of encasing another object but really wasn't sure I could pull it off on shoes.  Thank goodness for Yes! glue:  it was just what I needed to be able to coil the strands of silk yarn onto the shoe surface.  I began by covering the surface of the shoe, excluding the heel (which I did separately afterward), with Yes! glue.  I gently positioned one strand of the sari silk on the seam of the edge and wound the yarn around and around the shoe, making sure that the yarn, which has varying thicknesses, was closely positioned to the previous wrapping.

First, I painted the surface of the shoes with clear gesso, inside and out.
The suede made it very easy for the gesso to "take hold" of the surface.

I worked around the base, and then the top edge of each shoe.  I configured a separate coil of yarn at the top of each toe.

I did a separate coil around the heel, as well.  This gave the shoe an interesting pattern.
After covering the entire shoe body, I coiled yarn over the stiletto heel in a vertical pattern.
Surprisingly, this was not too difficult.

I created the wings by fusing silk onto Peltex with Mistyfuse, I fused pink to one side of each wing, and blue to the other, but fused the colors on opposing sides.  Once fused, I trimmed around each shape and free-motion stitched the feather patterns onto each wing.  I used blue thread through the needle and florescent orange in the bobbin!

In trying to figure out how to place the wings I realized that I wanted them to be removable.
I couldn't figure out how I would be able to preserve them during shipping, otherwise.
For this I elected to stitch the wings together and placed a thin strip of velcro on the shoe heel and the wings.  This way, the wings are stable on the shoe but are easily removed for shipping!

Here is when I realized I made a mistake in the progression of the construction:
I should have painted the interior of these shoes before I started coiling the yarn.
What was I thinkin?!
In retrospect, I wish I had painted them a matte black.  Oh well.
Since I love to do things the "hard way" (apparently!) I had to handle the shoes differently to 
finish the interiors.  

I decided to "fill" the shoe interiors with a combination of sari silk strips and brightly-colored
funky buttons.  It was really fun to do this, but again, I wish I had figured this part out first.
I love my bright, happy shoes!


  1. Great job Leslie, they turned out great!

    1. Thank you! I truly enjoyed this project! I can't wait to see what others come up with.

  2. I love these shoes! The sari ribbon is just beautiful the way that you wound it in patterns. I have never had any luck with Yes! glue...everything always falls off after a while. Maybe I'll try it again.

    1. Oh Carol, sorry I haven't checked my comments in awhile! I love Yes! glue and use it for a wide variety of things. What is your favorite?