Friday, February 2, 2018

Little Boy Blue's Shoes

13-inch circa 1930s composition boy named by me:  Little Boy Blue

This 13-inch full-body composition boy arrived nude during the late 1990s/early 2000s. He traveled here with two other black composition dolls: Debutante by American Character and another unmarked doll that wears a dress made from flour sack fabric.

Little Boy Blue's name was inspired by the color of the suit I had made for him.  At one time he had shoes and socks, but another composition boy borrowed and kept them as his own.  After recently sharing Little Boy Blue's photo with members of my doll group*, I decided to make a pair of black felt shoes for him.

Here's what was done:

A piece of felt fabric, wide enough to cover the entire circumference of his foot, was wrapped around the foot.  It was removed and the bottom edges that cover the sole were hot-glued together.

The extra felt at the toes was tucked under.  Some of the felt at the top of the sole area was trimmed before tucking.

The tucked area was hot-glued together and allowed to dry.  An identical piece of felt was cut to use for the opposite foot followed by gluing, tucking, trimming, and gluing to fit the other foot.

Two additional strips of felt fabric were cut to create the heel, sides, and top flap of the shoes.

Shown from the side angle, in this photo, one of the heel/side/top strips has been wrapped around Little Boy Blue's foot.  (His foot is turned to the side.)
Shown from the bottom angle, the heel/side/top flap has been hot-glued onto the top portion and the sides tucked under and glued to the bottom of the shoe.  Additional hot glue was added to the bottom of the shoe before a felt sole was attached.
A small piece of felt fabric created the sole of the shoe.
After applying glue to the bottom of the shoe, the small piece of felt used for the sole was pressed onto the bottom of the shoe.  This was allowed to dry and the excess felt trimmed.

The soles after trimming
His bare feet were traced onto cardstock to create innersoles.  These were cut out...

... and placed inside the shoes.


After the glue dried, a black button was glued to the front of the shoes where the two sides of the heel/side/top piece meet.  I painted any excess exposed glue with black acrylic paint.  
Blue needed socks or a sock "hack":

Since I did not have socks to fit Blue, I used a white knit glove to make a pair.  Two "fingers" were cut from the glove as far down near the palm area as possible.  The opposite sewn ends of each were cut open.  This material was placed around his ankles and the raw edges at the top and bottom were tucked under.  (He will get real socks later.)

Here is a closer look at the socks and Blue's new shoes.

The height of his shoes covers the bare areas of his sockless feet.  (Notice that one shoe is taller than the other, but he doesn't mind.)

Blue needed a tie; so I made one for him.
Using a piece of black ribbon, I fashioned a necktie for Blue.
Here's Blue, dressed in his suit, tie, socks, and shoes looking as good as new.
*One of the members of my doll group commented that Blue looks Asian.  Black composition dolls were usually given a darker brown complexion whereas Blue's complexion is tan, the color that an Asian composition doll might have have been painted. 

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6 comments:

  1. This is just the post that I needed!! I have an 18 inch doll that has tiny feet. All of the shoes that I bought with hopes that they would fit her, does not. I can make my own! Thanks for this right-on-time post!! Your little boy blue is adorable!!

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    1. You are welcome, GG. Search Pinterest for "doll shoe patterns," or more specifically, "18 inch doll shoe patterns," where there are some really cute ideas for girl dolls.

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  2. You've made Little Boy Blue happy.
    Thanks for the tutorial on how to make shoes easily.

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    1. Hi Arlette,

      I have made myself happy, too, now that Little Boy Blue's outfit is complete.

      I am also happy that you enjoyed this post.

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  3. Ok now, socks made out of a gloves? Never thought of that. Blue's really does look complete. I know jealous can happen in Doll Haven but Blue didn't have any socks and shoes at all? He's brother should be thankful he was blessed with a kind heart. I already know Scarlet going to be jealous when Luvabella arrives.

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    1. No, poor Blue was sockless and shoeless for about two years. The boy who borrowed his was part of my Eye of the Collector exhibit in 2016, so I had to make him presentable at Blue's expense. He's all set now.

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