Thursday, June 05, 2014

Mustache Shoes for a Little Mister

When a family in our church welcomed a long-awaited baby boy a few weeks back, leather shoes instantly popped into my mind. And when I discovered that the baby shower theme was mustaches and sweater vests, the specific design began to take shape.

I used the Darling Diapers Mini Mocs pattern (It's free and includes sizes 0 mths - 4 years!), which is my favorite "classic" leather shoe pattern. I made up the 6-12 months size, since the little guy I made them for is already two months old and growing fast. The shoes were entirely handstitched -- I'm finding that's my absolutely favorite way to sew leather, because there is no stress and headache of trying to get my machine to cooperate.

I drew up a mustache template and cut it out of the tan suede upper, so that the black leather "lining" would show through. It worked like a charm! After stitching the lining and upper right side together along the straight-ish edge, I used an awl to poke a series of holes around the mustache. Then it was a simple matter of two rounds of running stitch (the cleanest way to create a strong, tidy row of stitching on leather, in my opinion) with a regular needle. I chose the awl + regular needle over just a leather needle, since the awl gave me the necessary precision for a topstitching detail. 

I repeated that procedure on the elastic casing. However, I did use a leather needle for my first row of stitching when attaching the sole to the uppers (switching to a regular needle for the second round of running stitch, since the blade on the leather needle can easily cut your existing stitches!). I like the leather needle when sewing "curved" seams that don't lay flat together, because I feel I have more control.

Once the shoes were done, I realized I had no suitable box to place them in, so I got to work with a manila folder and a roll of brown shipping paper. Voila! Custom shoe box! Dolled up with some washi tape and chalkboard contact paper, it was ready to go. And yes, for the record, I often spend far too long wrapping presents. 

Into the bag with some homemade whipped body butter and a little book, and ready to go. For the bag, I stitched together some cardstock flags to make a mini bunting for an otherwise plain gift bag. I like the simplicity of the look.

In keeping with the mustache theme, I volunteered to make a cake (which, sadly, went largely uneaten!). I've been longing to try the whole "take a circle cake and cut a curve in it" idea that you've probably already seen on Pinterest. Well, it works! Sadly, this very "flashy" picture is the only snapshot I got:

Now I'm working on another pair of leather shoes that have been waiting patiently in a box for months -- they were meant to be for Rosa, but even her tiny feet will be too big for them now! Oh well, they'll be ready to go for the next baby girl who graces our circle of friends with her presence.


  1. Shannon,

    You are so creative! The shoes are adorable, and your packaging is so very inventive! How do you come up with so many terrific ideas? : ) The paper bunting is so cute, I will have to keep that in mind for the future.


    1. Thanks, Sarah! As far as ideas, I think it's a combination of Pinterest and being too "cheap" to buy the things I like. :-) I'm glad you like the paper bunting -- it was such an easy way to dress up a plain bag.



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