Thursday, September 18, 2014

Some Links for Inspiration

Yay! It's that time of year again: the Miss America Show Us Your Shoes Parade! I blogged about this here last year, and today saw a link to a photo gallery of this year's shoes on the Muses Facebook page. Lots of fun inspiration there to get the creative shoe mojo flowing if you've started work on your 2015 shoes. My favorites are Miss Maryland. Miss Montana and Miss Oregon

Also, this made the rounds a little while ago, but I've been slowly working my way through the links in this awesome NOLA,com collection of "daliy meditations" on Carnival. It helps make it feel like Carnival 2015 isn't that far off...

My shoe glittering will be slowing down for a while, as my son arrived last week, but there will probably still be progress updates and pictures here from time to time.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Great, Big Snoball Shoes Post! (Lots of pictures)

For some reason, I have no idea why, I decided this was the year I was going to completely master Snoball Shoes. I made a Snoball shoe last year (this shoe, which currently lives at Hansen's). I really, really loved the 2014 one, but thought there was still a lot of untapped potential in Snoball Shoes. My research/reference images for Snoballs are compiled on this Pinterest board.

I like the round sphere shape, but also wanted to try some foam eggs as bases to give the shoe that more conical look some Snoballs have. After some research and fiddling with foam shapes of different sizes, I've settled on these eggs and these spheres (both from Michael's):

The spheres are the 3", the eggs are 2 13/16 x 3 7/8 inches. I bought a 6-pack of the spheres so I'd have plenty to experiment with. Note that foam eggs are particularly easy to come by at Easter time, if you're shopping/planning year round. I also bought a 2-pack of slightly larger 4 x 2-5/8 inch foam eggs from Amazon  and those also worked fine. The foam is denser, so it's a little tougher to carve, but more substantial.

Those sizes wound up being the best fit for the generic disposable cups I used this year:

Doesn't look like much yet, but after plenty of glitter it will.

So far, I've done three different Snoball Shoes for 2015. I have more details on how these were made, but things are a little crazy at the moment, so tons of pictures for now (which I think is what most people are looking for here anyways), possibly more details down the line.

The first features a nectar cream spherical snoball that most closely resembles the 2014 shoe:

The pink of the snoball and the foot of the shoe is Martha Stewart in color "cotton candy" (which, to me, looks just like nectar cream). The interior is Recollections "champagne," the sole is Recollections "rasspberry" (though it doesn't show in the pictures). I made the straw blue and white striped as a nod to the Defend New Orleans snoball shirt. I may add more to the cup so it isn't so plain, and this still needs the year added (probably on the foot).

Next up, a cone-shaped Rainbow snoball. I wanted to pick another flavor that was recognizable besides Nectar Cream, and thought this could look pretty (I pinned a bunch of reference images for rainbow snoballs/snowcones/etc.)

The interior of the shoe is Recollections "peacock" and the foot is ArtMinds stackable. For the cup, I did a glittery version of this paper solo cup. I glittered a white straw and white spoon handle to complete the look. I don't think I completely nailed the effect of a rainbow snoball, I'll keep experimenting with it (maybe I'll attempt a Hansen's Creambeaux next?)

The last one is the least literal/most interpretive of the 2015 Snoball Shoes, in the sense that it doesn't really look like any snoball you've ever ordered. It's meant to be an interpretation of the Hansen's sign (lots more pictures on the Hansen's Facebook Page), which is also the artwork on the Dirty Coast Hansen's shirt (We are big, big fans of Dirty Coast...I already have this onesie for my baby, even though we don't live in NOLA right now). I really wanted to try and recreate that gorgeous color gradient on the snoball:

Reference images of the inspiration for this shoe
The finished shoe

I tried to create the textured effect of the sno-bliz in the poster, so I added waves of silicone caulk. This is what the base shoe looked like before glittering (I primed the shoe with which spray paint, and stuck the umbrella and cherry on there to get an idea of what the final effect would be):

The gold of the cup and foot are Martha Stewart "yellow barite." I did the lettering in blue and green to match the cup on the Dirty Coast shirt (though I replaced "PARTY" with "MUSES" and "BLIZ" with "2015"). When the sign and the Dirty Coast image differed, I generally chose the Dirty Coast version: I used the New Orleans flag rather than the American flag, and included purple/pink towards the bottom of the snoball rather than just orange). I made the flag out of foam and a toothpick, the umbrella is a little cocktail umbrella that I trimmed down. The cherry is a red glitter sphere that I added a glittery green stem to:

Shoe from the back showing the cup lettering

To get the shading right on the snoball itself, I used five shades of iridescent glitter, and mixed four additional custom blends for the transition areas (9 colors total).  The interior and sole are both Martha Stewart, but I don't recall the color names. 

Now that it's done, I think I could've gone a lot more dramatic on the texturing, although I do love the way the coloring came out - like a glittery sunset!

I also wish I'd chosen a shoe with a less "busy" design (I worry that the crazy snoball with all it's colors and embellishment fights a little with the dramatic strappy foot). But overall, a very fun, very productive experiment.

Here are some group shoots, mostly because I'm pretty proud of these:

154 days until Muses 2015!!