With fall here and winter rapidly approaching I’ve finally switched out my summer shoes and clothes for my cold weather ones. This means I just moved it all to the middle – I’m not fancy enough or have a big enough home to have separate closets for different seasons. If you’re one of those lucky people to have separate closets then I’m rather jealous. Moving on.
When I pulled out my leather riding style boots I noticed a small problem – they hadn’t fared too well over the long summer months being shoved in the back of the closet and looked a bit forlorn, and well, wilted. I started looking for something easy to DIY to combat the droop but I could only find ones made of rolled up newspapers and magazines or cut up pool noodles – I wanted something a little prettier.
At BlogPodium Tonic Living had given all the attendees two yards of fabric and asked us to create something with it and any other fabric we had on hand for an Instagram contest. I decided I’d use my new fabric to make pretty DIY boot inserts. The contest is finished, but I’m rather pleased with my creation so I thought I’d share.
What you’ll need
Fabric – 4 circles and two rectangles
Fiberfill, or stuffing of your choice
Dried Beans (optional)
First you’ll need to measure your boots. For tall boots you’ll want the inserts to be tall enough to support the ankle but still reach the top of the boot. Mine were 14” tall. You’ll also want to decide how wide you’ll want them to be. I decided mine should have a 3” diameter, however once finished I found that a little big – 2 ½” would probably be better.
Cut out your shapes. Cut four circles to form the top and bottom of your inserts – remember to make your circle a bit bigger for the seam allowance. You’ll then cut out two rectangles. The rectangles will be the height you’ve decided on for your insert plus about an inch for the seam allowances at the top and bottom. The width of the rectangle will be the circumference of your circle plus the allowance. This is where that high school math you were sure would never use in real life is useful (circumference = diameter times 3.14. In my case it was 3” x 3.14= 9.42” which I rounded up to 9 ½”).
Pin your fabric rectangles right side in to make tubes. You’ll want to sew along the short side leaving your seam allowance. Once those are done you’ll pin one circle to each end of the tube – again, fabric right side in. You may have to fiddle with this a bit, but I found pinning inwards worked best. You’ll then sew your rounds to the top and bottom of the tube. Take your time – this was my first time attempting to sew anything other than a straight line, and it worked for me with a little patience.
Leave an opening at one end of each tube so you can turn it inside out, and then stuff it. I wanted to have a little weight at the bottom of my inserts so I used a cup of dried garbanzo beans, but this isn’t required.
I then stuffed my inserts using a pillow I sacrificed as I didn’t have any regular fiberfill. To help get the stuffing to the bottom of my tube I used a long wooden spoon. You’ll want the insert to be stuffed firmly – remember the purpose of the insert is to support your boots. Once they were filled I hand stitched the holes closed.
To finish the inserts I attached a length of ribbon to the tops using a simple whip stitch, and then added a small bow to the tops. The ribbon in optional, however I wanted to be able to hang my inserts up out of the way when they weren’t in use.