Who doesn’t love a good pair of flip-flops?  In my world, sandals are synonymous with summer. As soon as the weather warms up, my feet don’t see the inside of a closed-toe shoe until those nasty little snowflakes start falling.
Here we are in the summer of 2007 and it seems like everyone prefers things embellished – so why not your feet?  Grab some supplies and a few pairs of plain, inexpensive sandals (my favorites are from Old Navy), and flip those flops into something really worth wearing!

TIE ONE ON
Cut strips of scrap fabric (1/2 inch wide by 6 inches long) and tie along entire length of plastic strap, very close together. Trim shorter for a more manicured look, or leave long and shaggy.

IT’S A WRAP
Cut a strip of scrap fabric (2 inches wide by 24-30 inches long). Fold the long edges under and iron to create finished-looking edges. The strip will now be about an inch wide. Find the center of the strip and begin wrapping the fabric around the plastic strap beginning at the toe and ending on each side near the heel. Trim off excess fabric, leaving enough to fold under to create a clean edge and secure with a line of hot glue.

THIS OLD THING?
Glue beads (we used beads from an old necklace) to your flip-flops using washable, waterproof craft glue (make sure to read the label). Hold each bead in place until the glue sets up slightly (about 30 seconds, depending on the amount of glue used). You can use a hot glue gun, but if the beads are very large or heavy, they’re not likely to stay put for very long.

SATIN FLAT
Add a little glamour by using satin ribbon. Cut a length of ribbon to run the entire distance of the plastic strap. Secure in place with a few small dots of hot glue. Add a few beads to the toe strap, and voila! You have a pretty satin flat.

BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED
Choose a pretty silk flower to reflect your personality. The trick is to pull the flower from the stem and disassemble the petals, keeping them in order. Then, beginning with the very bottom layer, secure to the toe strap with hot glue. Continue reassembling the petals until the flower is complete. If the flower had a plastic center, simply cut the stub off the back and glue the center back onto the flower.

ART AND (IN)SOLE
You can use acrylic paint to add a fun design to the insole of your flip-flops that will peak out around your feet when you walk. Here are a few tips: There are many different types of acrylic craft paint. Choose artist’s pigment for thick coverage. You’ll spend less time giving your designs just one coat. Outdoor acrylic paint is best to withstand moisture and other outside elements. After the paint is dry to the touch you can heat-set the paint with 30 minutes in the dryer. Finish up with a coat of clear plastic spray or clear varnish to protect the design. Let dry for 24 hours before wearing.

If the shoe fits, wear it! You can embellish your flip-flops with just about anything. Use your imagination, trust yourself, and most of all…have fun! Isn’t that what summer’s all about?

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Jennifer Garcia -

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