I didn't make them entirely from scratch, but I did make some serious improvements on some sandals I bought in Spain (2 years ago!) by cutting up a purse I got at Goodwill yesterday, and reassigning various parts of the purse to new and improved functions for my shoes!
The problem with these wonderful sandals was that once I got the leather totally broken in and molded to my feet, they no longer fit, because I could slide further into the toe box once it was all stretched out. I buckled the slingback straps as tight as they would go, but invariably, one or both shoes would always fall off at the worst times-- like when I was sprinting across Barcelona to get to class. Lemme tell ya-- I had some pretty freaky halts (think Fred Flintstone putting on the breaks in his prehistoric car, but with no prehistoric seatbelt) due to that issue. So, my solution was to get a couple of skinny hair rubberbands and knot them onto the straps that went behind my heel, so that I could have a makeshift ankle strap to hold everything together. This worked well enough, but was a bit janky; namely, because one of the rubberbands wasn't very big, so I made a loop out of a plastic twistie to attach the rubberband to the shoe. This bit of plastic and metal poking me in the ankle was not always very comfortable.
Here is a diagram of the ghetto-ness:
Finally, when I was at a haunted house in Spain, some girl who was way too freaked out was literally right on my heels (I guess she thought I could protect her from the terrible acting?) when she stepped right on my shoe, and my super-soft leather just tore right then and there. The tear didn't render the shoes unwearable, but it did make them more floppy and now more seriously in need of repair.
So today, I finally did it! I should have taken pictures during the whole process, but I was to excited about diving into the project to want to stop for Kodak moments. But that's ok, because the photos of my final results are pretty dang exciting!! Special thanks to Bryan for getting me a hardcore sewing machine that can fly through leather!
Here's a crappy photo of what my shoes looked like before I started hacking up a purse and using lots of contact cement:
And here are the lovely "after" photos!
And finally, here's a funny cat video that has absolutely nothing to do with this post: