Have you ever wondered if you could make shoes specifically for cosplay, knee-high boots at that? Fancy costumes can be crazy expensive especially when it comes to footwear. This seems to be a hurdle to those who want to cosplay. However, did you know that you can actually make your own thigh-high boots? This is a smart alternative aside from getting a pair from your local thrift shop.
So, read along with our tutorial and get the best ideas on how to make these thigh-highs and high heels. The pieces that we’ll be showing you how to make in our tutorial are cost-effective and pretty sassy! The correct footwear will complement the appearance of your cosplay and will give the aura of being completely in the character that you portray.
How To Make Customized Cosplay Thigh High Boots
A lot of people are getting discouraged about buying footwear because of the price tags they come with. If you are one of these people, then brace yourself for this terrific idea! Did you know that you can customize your boots to match your entire cosplay outfit? The best part is, you don’t even need to shell out a lot of money to buy the “right” heels. There are other possibilities in recreating what you own as of the moment for that cosplay look.
Finding the footwear in the perfect color is the dilemma most cosplayers will encounter every time they make their outfit. No outfit will ever have the complete look without the appropriate footwear. If the costume calls for knee-high boots, you can look for the base you are comfortable with. It can be a pair of regular or ankle boots that you already have. You can turn them into the knee-high boots you need. You can even make it detachable so you can reuse the base again.
What You Will Need For This Project
You will need some basic materials for this DIY craft. Choose some base footwear that you can repurpose. Then, find some stretchable fabric at home or get one from a local shop. Don’t forget to use a yarn that matches the color of your chosen footwear. Then there’s the pattern paper although you can also use silk paper. Throw in some plastic wrap and an OR tape into your craft stash along with a pair of scissors.
You will also need a marker, some fabric chalk or pencil, some adhesives including any kind of glue. Just in case, you will also need acrylic paint, some invisible zippers, or a pair of elastic bands to grip the DIY boots onto your calves later on.
Starting The Shoe-Making Process
Check your base footwear. Will you still use it or are you ready to let it go? This is important as you will need to remove any decorative elements on it such as studs or buckles. Your footwear should have a smooth surface so you can easily design it, too. Do not worry about your base shoe’s color or the length of its shaft as you will be turning these into cosplay-worthy footwear.
Try to find a stretchable fabric to use as your shoe cover. Stretch vinyl can be used as they have a sleek finish, are stain-resistant, and do not fray. You can also use poly stretch fabric or cotton. Spandex or pleasers are also good shoe covers. Before buying or cutting the fabric, you need to measure the boot height that you need and add extra fabric allowance.
Making The Shoe Pattern
Shoe patterns are widely available online so you don’t really have to worry about where to buy them or how much it will cost you. All you have to do is to be smart in looking for sewing patterns that you can actually make use of.
The Tracing Method
Using a thin, transparent paper, press it on the base footwear and trace its outline using a pen, including its seams and edges. To hold it in place, you can pin the paper to the shoe base while you draw. If you are using boots as a base, don’t forget to include the center front and center back seams. This is where you will find the right fit for the curve of your foot and leg.
Add the boot’s shaft by measuring the width of your calf and thigh. You can also add the length of the shaft and sketch the basic shape on your pattern paper. You may use a stockings pattern, the pattern for leggings, or a bodysuit as a base. For fabrics that aren’t stretchy, you can a few inches of allowance. Then, use a tape of glue on the shaft piece to make your basic shoe pattern.
The duct tape method of making customized pieces is very popular among armor makers. Start by putting on your shoe base wrap your leg with a cling/plastic wrap and layer it with a duct or masking tape. Do the same with the second boot. Make sure you get snug but comfortable with the measurement as not to cut your blood circulation when you wear it later.
Use a marker to draw in the seam lines in making thigh-high boots. That includes the center front, center back, and side seam. After doing this, you can now cut the tape shoe dummy that you made. Cut them at the seam lines that you made and lay the pieces on tracing paper to create a reusable pattern.
You will need a mirror image of both the left and right boots. You can do this when you fold the fabric to create 2 patterns. Add an allowance of at least 1 -1.5 cm or more on all seams as thigh-high boots need more extra fabric. This is also a good idea just in case you need to adjust the fit or if you are using a non-stretchable fabric. Meanwhile, in making a detachable boot cover, do add around 1 cm. seam allowance on the bottom of your pattern.
FAQ On How To Sew Your Own Boots
How Can I Sew My Pattern?
Now we move on to the fun part! In this part of the tutorial, we will show you how to get the patterns sewn. Did you ever think it was difficult? Stick around and read on to learn how to pull that great footwear off!
You will be using a straight stitch when closing the pattern seams. You can also do the same technique should you wish to put a zipper. By using long straight stitches, you will be able to start sewing stretchy fabrics such as spandex provided that the seam is pasted or glued first. Finish it with an overlock or stretch stitch once you are sure that it fits you comfortably.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Yes, there are. As we’ve mentioned, the only limit to making cosplay costumes is your imagination. A good example of this is painting your legs. You can slip into a stocking and paint your leg the same color as your base shoe material. You can even draw a zipper line onto the stocking to make it more realistic or paint only one side and color the other differently. You can also do the same using tights. However, the paint may crack as the tights or stockings get stretched throughout the con. Try this solution: use stretchy material such as spandex.
How Do I Attach The Boot Cover?
This one isn’t as hard as it seems. You can make a shoe cover that can be glued to the base, or make a detachable cover so your shoe base can be reused. This is an inexpensive way to use your base not just for this purpose but for other costumes as well. To make a detachable shoe cover, do not use glue to secure the top edge. Instead, hem the bottom part of the cover using an elastic band or a straight stitch. Using two elastic bands, sew it on the shoe cover and stretch it over the sole.
Can I Permanently Cover My Shoes?
Yes, you can surely cover the shoe permanently as long as you don’t have any plans to use it for any other purpose aside from cosplaying a particular character. You can permanently cover your footwear using foam glue, leather glue, or contact cement. Always test the glue on a fabric scrap before attaching the fabric covers. Using a wooden spatula or strip of cardboard, spread the glue evenly on your shoe base. Let it rest for a while until it is barely sticky. Do not directly press the fabric on wet glue as it will seep through the cloth.
Carefully place the fabric on the almost dried glue and press gently using your nails or any pointy tool. Don’t forget to add accessories on your boot covers like studs, a decorative ring, bias bindings, applique, and other embellishments before attaching them to the base. Otherwise, they can be difficult to attach once you have already connected both the base and cover.
How Do I Fix A Crooked Cover?
Are your covers not straight enough? Don’t worry as this is easy to fix! You can also make it a part of your footwear’s style. Meanwhile, if you really want to get it fixed, you can cover it with a bias tape of contrasting colors to cover the flaw.
On the other hand, if you notice your boot covers sliding down your knees when worn, you can attach silicone-backed elastic bands. They are going to be attached to your legs so you won’t have to worry about constantly pulling your boot cover up.
Do Boot Covers And Heels Matter?
Yes, they do! This is the often forgotten part of your cosplay footwear. The heels do not need any elaborate pattern or difficult method to do. You can take a piece of fabric and wrap the heel. You can also choose from various colors available that will match the entire look of the footwear. You can also trim according to the needed shape, making sure that the raw edges are well hidden on the front part of the heel. You can also opt to paint the edge of the heel according to the needed color. To make the paint stick better, roughen up the heel using sandpaper. After painting the heel, cover it with a clear varnish.
How did the boot-making go? You see, you don’t really need a lot of cash to keep your feet comfortable. As long as you are open to awesome ideas, you will definitely pull off the look of those kicks, along with your unique costume. Notable superhero characters, as well as anime footwear pieces, can also be paired with stockings. Cosplay shoes provide a clean finish to your outfit. Be sure to give your footwear as much attention as you give your costume.