Let me start of by saying I love my cats. They are my fur children and I adore them, but they’ve destroyed their fair share of my possessions over the years. Although our orange cat Oliver has grown into a sweet, well-behaved cat, he wasn’t always that way. When he was much younger and much more destructive, he managed to chew up the straps on a brand new pair of sandals I scored on clearance at Express. I was really bummed because I didn’t even get to wear them first, and I kept them in my closet for two years despite the teeth marks!
FINALLY I decided to do something about it. As a quick fix that wouldn’t even be permanent, I made these DIY woven sandal straps that attach onto the existing straps to cover the damage and give my sandals a really unique woven look!
Personally, I find weaving very therapeutic, but I’ve only made small projects like this. At Renegade LA last December, I purchased The Loome, a small weaving loom that comes in a variety of shapes, which you can use to make small woven pieces like these as well as pom poms and tassels. It was incredibly useful for this project because the size was perfect for my sandals, but you can also make your own simple loome out of cardboard for small sandal straps.
- Sandals with individual, thick straps
- Small loome, bought or homemade
- Thick string in complementing color
- Darning needle
- Yarn, various colors
If you do use The Loome, I recommend checking out their tutorials. PS, not sponsored, but I do love their product for this use!
Step 1: Thread the loome with thick string by weaving through the top and bottom knicks. Leave excess string hanging out and wrap around the top if needed. You should have taught strings to weave through now.
Step 2: Thread a darning needle with the first color of yarn and cut about 1 foot. I used two colors of a thick and thin yarn, which gives the weave a lot of thick texture, but this isn’t necessary. You can use as many or as little colors as you want.
Step 3: Thread through the first string, pull the yarn through and tie a double knot to secure the end.
Step 4: Weave under and over the strings for several rows until you want to switch to another color. To switch colors, tie a tight knot at the end of the row, trim, and begin with a new strand of yarn by tying another knot and continuing the weave. Switch colors as many times as you’d like. I did not follow a specific number of rows or anything.
Step 5: Weave all the way to the very end, pushing the rows together so they are taught, and tie a double knot to complete the weave. Trim the knot so it is barely visible.
Step 8: To attach the woven straps, cut a piece of the same thick string to about 8 inches. Tie a double knot at one end and thread the opposite end through the darning needle. Choose the side of the weaving you want facing up, and poke upwards from the bottom at one corner of the weaving. The knot should catch in the yarn on the underside.
Step 9: Thread the string under the strap and poke up through the other side, close to the edge. Repeat back and forth under the strap to secure the weaving, leaving about a half inch between each point. Tie another double knot on the underside of the weaving to secure the other side of the strap. Repeat with both sandals.
Note, I chose this method so that the straps would not be entirely permanent and because I was concerned that using a glue gun would appear very messy.
That’s all there is to it! If you ever decide to change the straps again, simply cut the strings underneath to remove the weaving. While I’m not sure how well this method will hold up over time, a thick string should be able to put up with wear and tear for a while.
I love that I can get more use out of my sandals now and not worry about the obvious cat teeth marks that once bothered me. Plus, the woven straps make them look incredibly unique, and the yarn I chose adds some color and interesting texture to the sandals, so I think they’ll be really fun to wear this summer!