A couple of years ago, I got into a converse-buying phase and ended up with a few too many pairs. Unfortunately, I quickly found which ones were my favorites and the rest ended up cast aside. Recently, wanted to jump back into some hand-embroidery (something I used to do a lot), I thought it would be fun to makeover one of my pairs into something I’d want to wear again.
I’ve seen quite a few embroidered pairs of chucks out there, but most of them feature flowers. Although I enjoy flowers as much as the next girl, I was looking for something a bit different from the norm. My absolute favorite fabric I’ve ever had is a print called Mystery Food by Sara Watts, which features whimsical octopi. I chose this as my starting point.
Although you can buy the embroidery pattern for the octopus for machine embroidery, nothing is available for hand-embroidery so a little bit of winging was involved.
Converse shoes are made of canvas, which makes them an ideal candidate for hand-embroidery. Although it was a bit stiff pulling the needle through, I took it slow and patiently. I traced my design using a chalk pencil, and used a combination of stem stitch, back stitch, french knots and a little bit of satin stitching for the eyes.
I used three strands of Aurifil’s Aurifloss thread for the shoes, and it was a dream to work with. It didn’t tangle up or shread and I love the definition it provided to the overall design.
For the rest of the shoes, I decided to cover them in stars. An octopus and stars totally works, right? I used colors 2850, 5007, 2692, and 2021 for the octopus, and 2850, 2140, and 5007 for the stars.
I absolutely love how these turned out and I’m thinking that some of my other pairs of converse shoes will soon be in line for a makeover too.