Today Is Shoe Day

Lots of pictures in this post.

I had the day off of work today.  Went out to the camera store and had confirmed what I already suspected: the broken pin (in the CF card slot) in my camera means it’s not a simple fix.  The whole board needs to be replaced, which means sending it out to Canon, blah, blah, blah.  Unless it helps to know someone that works there (I do), it will cost nearly the same amount to do that as to just replace the camera.  Which I already knew.

Anyways, from there we went to the fabric store.  I needed zippers!


My zippers.

While I was there, I decided to get some ribbon to decorate the pair of flipflops I was wearing.

Back to the zippers.  I got this wonderful pair of boots at goodwill a little while ago, for $3.99.  Liked the height of the heel, finally found one with a rounded toe … not squared, not pointy.  Perfect!  And in my size, not too small!  I was sooo happy.  Only problem, the zipper was broken.  More so on the right boot than the left.  In fact, when I got them, the zipper was totally separated onto one side.

So, me being me, I thought, Oh, I’ll just replace the zippers!  Never mind I’ve never done anything even remotely close to this before.  Never worked with leather, never sewn a zipper.  Never ever tried either of those on a pair of boots!!

Ah, but that’s how I learn everything.  Wait until I want/need something done, figure that I have minimal skills in the area, and attempt the project.  Then be told or discover this is a difficult material to work with or an advanced thing to do.  Be halfway into the project, learning by mistakes, realizing I don’t really know what I’m doing, and realizing people were right.  I can’t count how many times I’ve done this.

So I got home, and couldn’t wait to start working on … something.  I started with the flip flops, and got … one done.  I was too excited about the boots to continue.




I’ve got a weird foot.

So, I laid everything out on my bed (yes, sewing on the bed, hoping pins or needles that break don’t end up lost somewhere in the covers) and started taking pictures 😀


Meh. Doesn’t look so wonderful in the picture 😦

This is the boot.


The evil zipper!

This is the zipper on the right boot.  I painted the broken area with nail polish when I first got them, so I wouldn’t get the zipper off track again going over the spot too fast.
Notice the teeth are spread out, also the teeth have pulled away from the rest of the fabric of the zipper, worse on the right side of the image.


There’s no turning back at this point.

I ripped out the old zipper carefully and was thinking … oh, this isn’t so bad!

I tried figuring out how in the world to get the new zipper in, and get it to stay until sewn, but there was no way I was going to pin it or anything.  Just wouldn’t work with this.  So I look around and decide on … the hot glue gun.  It was already right there, from working on the flip flops.  In hindsight, this may not have been the best solution, but it worked alright.


Zipper all glued in.

Really, it held amazingly well with the hot glue.


Starting the sewing.

Yes, I got thread and a leather sewing machine needle for this project.

Because the machine wasn’t pushing this thick heavy mass of boot along well on its own, I ended up just turning the wheel by hand instead of using the foot pedal to sew, adjusting things every couple stitches and making sure I was staying straight.

All the sudden, I had a little problem.


Fallen needle.

The arm and everything went up, but the needle stayed behind!!!  I guess I didn’t tighten it in well enough!  Also, it was sort of stuck in a wad of glue.

So with some finagling, I got it back into its proper place, without even having to disrupt my line of sewing!

Things got going a lot better, and I was able to sew down nearly to the end on both sides of the zipper.  But since this is a shoe and my sewing machine is not designed to fix shoes like this, I wasn’t able to sew down to the end of the zipper.

So I had to hand sew.


This is too much work!

This did not go as well as planned.

Right after this picture was taken (so, having sewn maybe an inch or so), my needle broke.  I couldn’t get it through the stupid glue.  I switched to a new needle, had a terrible time trying to thread the needle … and eventually got another inch and a half before giving up for the night.

At this point, I realized I was incredibly hungry.  I’d only eaten once so far, having forgotten to eat breakfast (I was thinking about going to the camera place and getting my zippers!), having eaten with my family at McD’s over six hours earlier.  I do that.  When I get working on something, I just keep working, and forget to eat.  Or really, do anything at all but work on it.

Tomorrow, I’ll do the second row of stitching.  Maybe.  I work a double shift.


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