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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Cheap Femme's DIY: Birdcage Veil and Upcycled Heels

Posted By on Tue, Nov 1, 2011 at 9:00 AM

  • Sandy Bottoms

Prior to becoming a shimmier and a shaker at SF's local peepshow, I made my rent working at a craft store. Spending over two and a half years longing over the Swarovski crystals, burning myself more times than I can count with hot glue guns, and answering every question there could ever be about 4th grade Mission Projects, I picked up a few things about DIY necessities and indulgences.

With some cheap (and often free!) materials and a little bit of vision, anyone can make homemade femme fabulousness. Lacking time or fine motor skills? No problem. These projects won't require any more time or effort than painting your own nails.

Looking for an easy accent to a Dia de los Muertos costume or want to put a little drama in an everyday look? Try adding a simple birdcage veil to your outfit for a quick boost of oomph.

Things you'll need:

-needle and thread


-measuring utensil

-fabric glue (optional)

-bobby pins

-decorating accessories (silk flowers, bows, feathers, gaudy broach, faux animals)

-3" x 3" felt square

-½ yard of 12" wide veiling, netting or inexpensive tulle (you can use 9" for less coverage or 18" to cover your whole face)

  • Sandy Bottoms

Step 1- Cut a heart from the felt. No need to be a perfectionist. No one will see it.

Step 2 -Cut a shape roughly like this from the drawing:

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Step 3 - Using a needle and thread, weave through the diamond holes along the rounded side (colored red in the drawing.)

Step 4 -Pull the thread, gathering the veiling material. Play with the fit and fall and make any necessary adjustments, then stitch down to the felt heart.

  • Sandy Bottoms

Step 5 - Sew or glue accessories to the felt and voila!

Here's another DIY project that's less of a how-to and more of a vision.

Imagine a pair of heels or wedges, long forgotten and outmoded, either in the back of your own closet or on the shelf of your local thrift store. Imagine upcycling those woe-begotten kicks by refashioning them with other materials:

  • Sandy Bottoms


  • Adding rhinestones, small mirrors, shells, heck, even Legos to the bottom section of the shoe.
  • Covering part or the entire shoe with fabric, lace, or glitter.
  • Using acrylic or fabric paint, paint on any design you like. Just don't forget to prime (optional) and seal with a flexible lacquer!
  • Adhering bows, buttons, leather flowers, pearls, or chains to the back of the heel for an accent.


Follow Sandy Bottoms on Twitter and visit her blog, Diary of Peepshow Princess. Follow SF Weekly's Exhibitionist blog us on Twitter at @ExhibitionistSF and like us on Facebook.

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