4.05.2011

A Little Bit of Love


It's safe to say around these parts there is a serious love for all things moccasin


1. Bought these a while back and they are yet to fit Cenzo. I see they are no longer available here.

2. Bought these 16 years ago while I was dating Chef. Sixteen years I've had these shoes! I love them so seriously. They are the Minnetonka soft soled version still available after all these years. I purchased them at the L.A. Farmers Market which is now apparently a crazy outdoor mall.

BEFORE...


I'm not that old, but this is pretty much the way it looked while I was growing up. Now, not so much.

AFTER...


Back to the shoes...

3. These are Luca's current favorite pair. They will be available in pink on April 15th. I may just have to get them for her. 

4. Love these, they come in red and pink too. Adorable for girls, but... although cute, they are not really designed to fit a baby foot. The instep (?) is not high enough for their chubby feet. I bought them because of the ease of hook and loop closure, but it's the cut that's off. Not quite right. They are cute anyway.
 
5. These I made by altering a free online pattern. The size comes in 0-6 months and it took some working to adjust to a size 6-ish. Here's another free pattern, but I haven't tried it yet.



~On my pair (#5) I lined them in quilting cotton and used fray check on the raw edges. I used some leather that my mom had for the shell and for the sole (sorry forgot pic.), I used a thicker beige suede that you can get at Michael's Crafts in rectangle pieces about 8 X 10. It's pretty hefty and works great for soft soled shoes.
~ Sewing leather can be a pain in the tush. You need to get a leather needle for your machine. Also, thick thread. It helps to use a Teflon foot on your machine. If the layers are too thick your machine will revolt. 
~And don't get me started about finding leather. Apparently many of you can totally find items (purses, skirts, jackets) at your local thrift stores at reasonable prices, but not me. I had visions of making moccasins in a wide array of colors. Online it's not much easier. Usually you have to buy the entire hide. If you all have a good, cheap source for garment weight leather PLEASE let me know.

6. So in other words, just buy these shoes. Oh my holy h@ll these are my most favoritest moccasins evah! They are from Freshly Picked. First let me tell you they are worth every penny. They fit well, the leather is fantastic (she has metallic pink,  silver and gold to name a few). I am so lucky I don't have a baby girl right now. I like this particular leather so much I'm pretty sure when Cenzo grows out of them I'll buy the next size up.

To make moccasins more wearable for an older toddler I like to add a padded insole. otherwise it's just a thin layer of leather between the foot and the ground.It's super easy and pretty darn cute.


If you are adding an insole to a pair of soft shoes that you are making you can trace the sole pattern piece onto your fabric choice (I used quilting weight cotton). If it's to add to a ready made moc, just trace the bottom of the shoe and add some.

I use two layers of fusible fleece, but if the shoes are already a little big you can use three layers. fuse the two layers of fleece and the cotton. I then use fray check along the perimiter of the sole tracing so when it is cut out the edges won't fray. I use pinking shears to trim, but I like the added security of the fray check.
Here are the soles that I made for the Freshly Picked pair of moccasins. Since the fabric is fused to the fleece you can cut your sole on the bias which can give you more options for the look of the insole especially if using a geometric print. The right photo shows the flip side of the insole. 

So there is my little bit of love.

6 comments:

oversewn said...

Sooo going to cut some leather now....I have a leather skirt and hide I found at the thrift store(not quite thrift price tho)
There has got to be some sort of hide place/tannery up where you live?
xo :)

Carolyn said...

Your moccasin collection = adorableness (if that's a word). Now I need to go hide my credit card so I don't buy any cute little moccasins!

Sascha said...

You would think there was a source for leather around here considering my neighbors are a bunch of cows. Literally.

Kimberly said...

I have a fierce love for moccasins and dang, I never even thought to make my own. Great idea about adding an insole as well!

Susan said...

sascha,
i love you!
i am totally linking to this post. the insoles are brilliant!

xo,
s.

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