Smithsonian Slippers - Left Bow

Clearly, this blog has not been updated in quite some time. I have been contacted by various individuals asking, rightfully, if it ever would be! Let me put those fears to rest. No, I haven’t lost interest in the project, and no, I have not simply given up. For the past few months, I have been, much like everyone else, waiting. Some months ago, in December, I ordered a run of stones for the bows, custom made to the shape, size, and color, of the originals. With the help of slipper friend John Henson, I thought I had all the specifics the stone cutters would need to accurately replicate the stones. Well, I was half right. I provided the correct specifications, they just don’t seem to have completely listened…

Smithsonian Left Bow (Image: The Costumer's Guide to Movie Costumes)

The glass stones themselves should have a rectangular table-top cut, with a small hole at either end for threading. The original stones are flat-backed, and gold-foiled. The stones I received, while the right size, were not, unfortunately, quite the right shape.

Bow Stone Diagram

The stones I have, after nearly six months of waiting, had been cut incorrectly. Instead of flat-backed (as shown above), the stones have small facets on the back, making them both inaccurate, and much more difficult to sew down, than the originals, since each side is beveled! Given the errors to the shape of the stones, they are now being recut, and I should have them in yet another month or so. So, more waiting! I must give the company its due though, they are recutting the stones at no charge, and it was a genuine mistake, which they readily admitted, and are doing their best to rectify, so, no harm done.

(Still Unfinished) Replica Slippers, (Beside the Maltese Falcon)

In the meantime, the shoes remain unfinished, and while we wait, I will be practicing sewing the bow design, using the incorrectly cut stones for sizing, (as they are the right size, despite their imperfections), to get the design and technique of them down, before I create the final bows.

So, that explains the wait. But I really am still committed, as ever, to finishing the shoes. I began seriously considering recreating the slippers nearly a year ago now, and they still aren’t finished. If you had told me that a year ago, I would have thought you crazy, but, for now, the work continues…