By Carol Baicker-Mckee
Children across Europe leave their shoes out on St. Nicholas day for St. Nicholas to come and fill them with candy. This is a fun craft which can double as a neat decoration or gift “box” in the spirit of St. Nicholas Day.
Printed copy of the template, which is available as a pdf here
Lightweight cardboard (I used some from an empty cereal box)
Scrap paper (I used the insides of security envelopes, which I am absolutely addicted to these days–I have fits if anyone rips the envelopes when opening bills)
Good glue, like Alene’s Fast Grab Tacky Glue (and no, Alene’s does not give me any kind of a kickback for mentioning their glues)
Pencil for tracing the patterns
1. Transfer your patterns and cut out all the pieces. I cut out the templates and traced around them on the back side of my paper, but there are many other ways to transfer patterns, and I will guess you are smarter about the whole thing than I am. Remember that the heel upper piece needs to be cut along a fold. I also cut two of the sole templates, instead of one, so I could give the slippers a nice, finished looking bottom. I cut them with the cardboard sides together because I wanted the plain brown to show both inside the shoe and on the bottom of the sole. This is because I am insane.
2. Fold the tabs on the uppers toward the back side of the paper.
3. Glue the heel/upper piece onto the sole of the foot first. Start by spreading a thin line of the tacky glue along the outer edge of the bottom of the sole (the top of this piece will be what shows inside the shoe). Glue the upper piece to the sole starting by attaching the tab along the fold to the middle of the heel. Work toward the front, bending the upper so that the fold along each tab is snug against the sole–should be pretty easy.
4. Glue the toe/upper piece in the same way as above, starting with the middle tab. This is a bit trickier to glue because you have to allow the top of the upper to bow up over the sole, but it’s still not terribly difficult once you get the hang of it. Position the tabs at whatever angle gives you a snug fit to the sole.
5. You can be done right now, or be a perfectionist and glue the second extra sole over the first sole to hide those unsightly tabs on the bottom of the shoe.
Now for my suggested twist on celebrating St. Nicholas Day: Take your child shopping for some new shoes–for someone in need. Help him write a note to St. Nick saying he’d like St. Nick to take the shoes instead of leaving presents in them, and give the new shoes to a child who really needs some. St. Nick will likely leave behind some of these paper ones with some treats anyhow, and a nice note about how he appreciates your child’s kindness so much that Black Peter definitely won’t leave him any coal. You can help St. Nick donate the shoes to a local shelter or other organization that collects shoes for needy kids.
Submitted by Carol Baicker-Mckee at http://doodlesandnoodles.blogspot.com
By Carol Baicker-Mckee