Change the Look of a Pair of Canvas Flats!

1 Hour

A few months ago, I had to give up my favorite pair of leopard print flats. It was a sad day, indeed, but I had worn them completely out! Since then, I have not found any leopard print flats that I like (insert sad face here). While shopping at the hobby and craft store, I ran across a spool of leopard faux lightweight suede with a metallic background that I fell in love with! I created this super-easy tutorial on how to cover canvas flats with fabric to show how I created a fabulous pair of new leopard flats for myself!

I recommend using 3M Super 77 spray adhesive and Fabri-Tac fabric glue… Both are a little more expensive but the adhesion in unmatched by any of the other less expensive brands! Plus, the fabric will stay secure on the shoes.

Step One

Make sure the flats are clean and free of dust. Stuff the shoes with the plastic bags so that the spray adhesive doesn’t get on the footbed or inside the shoes!

Step Two

Cut the piece of the ribbon in half (or cut the fabric of choice into two pieces measuring approximately 8″ x 12″). While wearing the plastic gloves, coat one of the shoes with the spray adhesive taking care to thoroughly cover the shoes. Don’t worry if it gets on the soles – it can be rubbed off with your fingers!

Step Three

Lay the fabric over the shoes and press in place with your fingers, smoothing out any wrinkles. Cut the excess away from the sole with scissors or the craft knife. Secure any loose spots with the adhesive – spray the adhesive in a puddle on a plastic bag and apply with a small paint brush.

Carefully cut the excess fabric away from the top of the shoe leaving about 1/2″ that can be rolled over as a “hem”. Clip the portion of the hem that will fold over any curved parts of the top of the shoe such as the toe. Secure the hem in place with a thin bead of fabric glue and press it into place. If you have small binder clips (I use them when making lamp shades), they can be used to hold the hem in place while the glue dries.

Years ago, I covered a pair of flats with Hello Kitty duct tape for my daughter and she loved them but I find this to be a much better option because of the variety of fabrics available!

Super-lightweight fabrics work best because they are easier to drape over the shoe. That's it - easy and inexpensive, and now they're my new favorites!

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Cher | The Craft Alternative
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Join the conversation
  • Esther Farrow Esther Farrow on Apr 27, 2022

    List of items needed for the project would make it a little easier to follow.

  • Mary Porod Mary Porod on Apr 28, 2022

    Brilliant! Love the recommendations on the adhesive. That’s half the battle in any craft project. The final result was amazing!