November 3, 2015

Bows and ribbons

or shoe-repair... It both doesn't really sound like my kind of thing, does it? 
And yet, I just "repaired" a pair of shoes using a ribbon.

You see, when I came home of Saturday afternoon, my shoes looked like this:

The right shoe had lost its suede bow. It must have happened while I was walking around in town but I had not noticed. Of course, it's a shame because although I've had these shoes for a couple of years, they are still good. And obviously, I am not the kind of person who wants to throw out a perfectly good item just because a piece of decoration has fallen off.

So, on Monday, I looked for, and found some ribbon in a colour which matches the shoes. In fact, I bought two kinds of ribbon, the other one matching the darker trim. When I started playing around with the shoes and ribbon though, I quickly decided to go with just the taupe colour.

I folded pieces of ribbon into a double bow and sewed down its center line. Then, I folded the bow in the middle and stitched the folds. And then, I tried to sew it under the now-empty loop of ribbon on the right shoe. When I tried it, that whole bit of ribbon came out so I just trimmed it down to a more convenient length, sewed the join to the back of my bow and then tacked the whole thing on the remaining ribbon bow on the shoe. With the left shoe, I had to pull out the original bow first. With it gone, it became clear that the ribbons on the shoes were not that symmetric. I didn't want to try and change that. Those ribbons were partially glued on and had bits of machine sewing holding them in place as well (I had noticed that before, it was a big reason why I didn't try to remove the trim altogether after I lost that bow). 
Of course, I'm absolutely no expert at decorating shoes but I think this little repair job turned out well:

At least they now match again. I just hope the ribbon won't react too badly to the occasional drop of rain...


  1. Great job! You can always try using a waterproofing spray to protect the bows.

  2. Great result! If they get wet, there is more ribbon and you already know what to do!
    Sandy in the UK