Damn You, Gravel Walkway!

My nephew got married last summer and the day was almost perfect. The weather was glorious and the entire wedding party looked radiant in their cream and gold themed outfits. The venues for both the ceremony and the reception were grand with beautiful and tasteful decorations and the whole day was just gorgeous.  The sun shone brightly all day and it was all going fabulously well then…..

Look at my shoes!!!

 Not just any shoes I hasten to add but my favouritest most comfortable dancing shoes. I love these shoes to death. I spotted them in Evans two years ago and was immediately drawn to the vintage/ Come Dancing look of them, I put these on and I feel like Ginger Rogers.

Damn and blast. Its that gravel walkway at the reception that did it. It looked lovely but it was a death sentence to gorgeous heels and I’m sure that mine weren’t the only ones to suffer such a fate.  This happened last summer and I have been reluctant to throw them out because I love them so. In the true spirit of credit crunch chic, and because I was so happy with the black ballet flats I dressed up I have tried to revamp them. First thing I did was have them re-heeled. This replaced the rubber base but the rest of the heel was still scuffed and looking shabby so I once again looked through my trusty trimmings box and pulled out a couple of things…

  • Superglue
  • Matching mesh type ribbon
  • Scalpel
  • Diamante Stones





A word of warning- I used superglue for this project and I wish I hadn’t. Superglue is great for mending broken china and doing other minor jobs where you only need a teeny tiny amount, but once you need more than the tiniest dab its horrid. I used it in a ventilated room as advised on the packaging but because I was using a lot of it, the fumes made my eyes water, my nose run and my throat hurt. I was so sure the fumes would fuse my airways together and cause me to suffocate in my sleep, that I didn’t go to bed straight away until I felt better and confident I would make it through the night. I’m serious. I’m a hypochondriac with an overactive imagination- not a great combination as it means I always feel that I’m about to kick the bucket in the most spectacular fashion. Oh, I also  I stuck my fingers to my shoes several times so all in all you may want to use something less lethal. Just saying, like.

Anyhoo. Back to the fun stuff….

First thing I did was cover one side of the heel in glue and quickly attach the ribbon to it, making sure the edge of the ribbon sat along the vertical centre of the heel. I then used the end of my scalpel (to reduce finger stickage) to smooth the ribbon along the heel and into position.





Once this was done I used the scalpel to trim off the excess ribbon around the heel and applied more glue as necessary. (Now you know why my eyes teared up)








I then did the same thing with the other side of the heel, lining up the edge of the ribbon with the centre of the heel and trimming off the excess.























Once both halves of the ribbon were attached and the edges were trimmed up, I added extra sparkle with the placement of diamante stones along the centre back of the heels and hey presto- new dancing shoes with added glitz.


 The glue hadn’t completely dried when I took this photo which is why it looks so patchy. Once it had dried and I cut off any extra threads it looked a lot neater. I also did a tiny bit more neatening by cutting the thicker edge from another piece of ribbon and running it along the upper and lower edges of the heel, just to tidy things up a bit.

Overall I’m fairly happy with the way they’ve turned out. They’re not perfect and I don’t expect them to last forever, I just want to get a few more boogies out of them before I retire them for good. I wouldn’t wear them during the day but under the cover of darkness I doubt anyone will be able to notice the untidiness, and on a crowded dancefloor is anyone really going to be looking at my heels with such scrutiny? Certainly not from this up close angle anyhow and if they are they can expect a DIY heel to the nose.

Having them reheeled- £7.95

Diamante Stones- Lying around in my trimmings box

Ribbon- around 50p

The joy of salvaging victory from the jaws of defeat- Priceless.

8 Comments on “Damn You, Gravel Walkway!”

  1. I feel your pain. There is nothing, but nothing like buggering up your favourite pair of shoes. Or, in my case, melting a row of apparently irreplaceable copper-coloured sequins with a misdirected iron on a silk top worn only once.


  2. Weesha says:

    They look good- I think the mesh ribbon and stones actually makes the shoes look prettier than before!

  3. jb says:

    I love what you’ve done with both pair of shoes, very crafty. The next time I have a pair of shoes that aren’t working for me I’m going to try my hand at recreating them. 🙂

  4. Jen says:

    I love what you’ve done too.. it’s so hard finding good comfortable shoes that are also cute – especially if they are meant to be danced in. I’m going to remember this. Thanks!

  5. Wow ! That’s a rebirth ! Wonderful !

  6. Rebecca says:

    They look really good!

  7. star0074 says:

    Wow, that is so clever! Thank you for taking the time to put up photos and directions. very cool.

  8. dressmaker says:

    Many thanks for this idea! I live in a city with lots of cobble stone streets – so all of my shoes’ heels are more or less ruined. I even thought of making a rubber protection cover for every heel but I never knew exactly how. Now I am inspired again!

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