A slip up in slipper making!

My lovely slippers I made are ruined…doh!   Here’s what happened.  


NB, the polystyrene mould used to form the slippers are called ‘lasts’.


1st Mistake

I ordered the wrong size slipper lasts.  

They are sold in European sizes, so I’d Googled the conversion and Google is wrong!!!  Well to be fair it’s not them, it is all the different companies that have shown conversion charts…they can’t seem to make their mind up!  I know I’m a UK 3 and a US 5, which shows as EU 36 on most returns from Google..but you see the bottom chart says EU 35…well that chart for me is right!!!  The others wrong.  Notice the first two have different US sizes??  Why can’t we have a global sizing system?

Unfortunately I’d gone with EU 36 and ordered the 36/37 size from Gilliangladrag online shop, which I now notice is basically an EU 37, which makes sense as you can shrink it more for a 36 one off the lasts if needed.


2nd Mistake

So I made a flat template around my foot the same size as the previous slippers I’d made, basically adding about 1” around my foot. So that bit was fine, I did some felting of it flat and still ok, I snipped a hole and then tried to fit the slipper over the last.  It took 2 of us to get them on!  Why on earth were no alarm bells ringing now that there was a problem??  They should have slipped inside easily at this point.


3rd Mistake

Because the slipper on the lasts were so tight I couldn’t get my fingers around the edge so I thought I’d pop them in the washing machine on a short wool wash to see if that helped seal the edges.  They came out after 20 mins and not really any difference.  I managed to get them off the slipper lasts and then tried them on.  Basically huge boats on my feet.  At this stage I should have done more hand felting in hot then cold water to shrink them.


4th Mistake

Well my impatience took over and I threw them in the wash with some towels on a hot wash!  When I got them out they were pretty tiny.  I stretched them as much as I could and managed to get my foot in one with some serious squishing going on in the toe area.  Oh and the hot wash has made the bright pinks and blues much darker, probably some of the black dye ran, I haven’t had a good look at the towels to see if they also have black on them.  Doh!


5th and Final Mistake

Again my impatience took over and I cut with scissors in the centre of the heel!  What a numpty!  I should have cut either side of my heel so that the back of the heel could have flopped down as additional sole and they be mule type slippers.



So now I’m left with some pretty slippers that I can’t walk in but I can pop on my feet when I’m watching TV, but no good for when I need to get up!  Boo hoo!!   I’m so annoyed at myself. I’m going to donate my slipper lasts to the felting group, I’m sure there are ladies with bigger feet than mine there who may use them. Although part of me is thinking I should have another go!  Minus the washing machine.





  1. Live and learn? I don’t expect there to be a universal shoe size anytime soon, but I hope you do try again — having trudged up that steep learning curve, you ought to be able to whoosh down the other side now!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh no! That is such a shame – they are so beautiful! Can you use the felt for something else? Little change purses or notion bags or something? There really should be one international standard size set! I had heard of lasts for shoe-making, but had no idea you could buy them for slipper making. So glad you are getting some different ones. The next ones will be perfect 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s