Angry Birds at the Renaissance Festival?

by Chelsey Barnes

It may be slightly specialized, but I can think of a number of reasons one might want to wear slippers with their costume: your costume is that of a little kid (or a costume for a little kid), your costume is themed around lounging (spa day, sick day, playing hookie), or you found some really kick butt Angry Bird slippers that would go great with your video game themed Day of Wrong.  However specialized it may be, I can think of at least twice as many reasons why: they get dirty outside; the bottoms would wear out on rough terrain; the soles aren’t thick enough to protect your feet from rocks, sticks, glass, flair pins that fell off someone’s costume; they easily fall off your feet; you could lose it during a conga line when you kick your foot out and it goes flying across the room; you could trip and fall down the stairs because your footwear is unstable.  Or maybe that’s just me.

Never fear: There is a solution to this conundrum, and that solution is what I affectionately call “Slipper Spats.”  And thankfully, it’s a surprisingly easy solution to boot.  All you need is one pair of slippers:

These are stunt slippers, photographed by Erin Schneider who, when asked to take a picture of them alone, returned to find them already purchased by some other lucky ducky.

On super puffy novelty slippers, you usually find a one inch thick (approx) foam base covered in the slipper fabric.  We want to get rid of this base.  Start by carefully ripping out the stitches that hold the head to the base at the opening of the slipper.  You will find that there are three layers of fabric here: the bottom/sides of the base, the top of the base, and the head.  Because it’s easier on the manufacturer, the head should be sealed shut and the stuffing well contained.  Continue ripping out stitches until the head pops off.  Repeat for second slipper.


At this point you have a neat little stuffy to toss at structurally impossible “buildings” housing smug looking pigs, which you will then have a frustratingly hard time knocking down.  You will not, however, be able to just slap them onto your pumped up kicks and call it a day.

This is where the “spats” part comes in.  Much like the more “high-brow” item of the same name, these spats are worn over the shoe, attaching underneath and at the back.  For my purposes I used three thin pieces of elastic for each spat.  Measurements vary, but on the bottom of the spat I used a pieces just long enough to reach from one side to the other of the slipper head.  For the back I did a rough measure of the distance from one corner of the slipper head, around my ankle and back to the other corner, then chopped off an inch or so for tension. YMMV.

Next is a tiny bit of hand sewing.  Don’t be scared.  I hate hand sewing, and I still made it through this alive.  Simply hand tack the ends of your elastic pieces at strategic points along the bottom of the slipper head.  I’m sure I could have gotten away with one piece of elastic under the shoe, but I wanted to make sure it didn’t flop around.

And there you have it.  A simple way to be incredibly goofy and look great doing it.


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