Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tutorial - Gem Centered Shoe Bows

 You will need:

Gemstones (I used red in 13 and15mm sizes)
pearls (I used 3mm)
heavy thread
glue (I used E6000)
beading or thin needles
thread that matches the ribbon
shoe clips (I got mine from American Duchess)


Glue the gems to the felt.


Cut the felt around the gem, leaving a small lip of felt around the gem.

Thread two needles with heavy thread.  Push the first through the felt and string a few pearls on it.

Work with two pearls at a time.  Hold them close to the gem in a row.  Push the second needle up between the two beads.

Then push the second needle through the second bead.  This bead will now have two strings through it.

Push the next two beads forward and hold them in line with the last two.  Push the second needle down between the second and the third pearls.

Repeat this sequence of tacking down every other pearl.

When you get to the last pearl tack it down, then push the first needle back through the first bead (this prevents a divot between the last and the first beads.


Push all the threads through to the back of the felt and knot them.  Because felt is so loosely woven I also glue the knots down so they don't pull through.

 The gem centers are complete!  Now let's make bows!

 Cut a piece of ribbon twice as long as you want your bow to be, plus a seam allowance.

Fold both ends to the center with a 1/4-1/2" overlap.  Thread a needle with matching thread, doubled over, and tie a big knot in the end.  Stitch a running stitch through all three layers of the bow.

 Gather your stitches tight, then secure the gather with a few whipstitches.

 Take a small stitch through the felt backing of a gem.

And stitch back through the bow center, securing the bow to the gem.


 Cut two lengths of ribbon for the tails.  Cut them as long as you want the tail to be plus 1/2".  Usually I would cut the ribbon at an angle or cut a notch into it, but I'm trying to copy a specific bow here so I'm doing it straight like the illustration.

Fold over the edge 1/2" and run a straight stitch through the top of the tail.  Pull the stitches tight to gather up the tail.  Take a few whipstitches to secure the gather.


Stitch the tail to the bow, right side of the tail to the back of the bow.

A completed tail bow.

Attaching the Shoe Clips:

 Open up the shoe clip like this.

 Using the two holes in the clip, stitch the clip to the back of the bow.  Make sure that the clip prongs are facing you as you are stitching, so the clip closes on itself and not on the bow.  Also, if you're sewing on a bow that has tails be sure that the tails come down opposite the clip prongs so that the bow hangs off your shoe and not up your ankle.  Tie off and you're done!

A completed clip!

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