Sunday, 12 April 2015

Quick Stitch Project - Prym Espadrilles

When I spotted this display of Prym espadrilles at a Spring trade show, my interest was captivated instantly.  Such a fun and useful way to use up smaller lengths of fabric, my mind raced with design possibilities and I made a purchase of the required Prym soles within hours of arriving home.

I've been a fan of all things Prym for years and was confident that sole quality would be top notch.   The pattern with the soles is multipurpose across sizes - do check that a seam allowance is included as it wasn't on my copy.  Trace the foot and heel sections off the pattern - bearing in mind that the foot section needs to be reversed to cater for left and right fitting.
My choice of exterior fabric was a sari silk embellished fabric in a striking red.  Cut the foot and heel sections in your exterior fabric and also in a cotton fabric for the interior.  Next, pin the exterior and lining pieces right sides together and stitch all the way round with your chosen seam allowance.  A gap of 4cm or so needs to be left for turning - best to leave on the side of the foot section and base of the heel section.
It's very easy to pin the pieces in place against the soles, starting with the heel section where the rounded section needs to be placed against the sole.  Work out a centre point so the heel section has equal amounts on both sides.
Both sections are secured in place with a traditional hand blanket stitch - test out first on a fabric scrap for size and eveness.  Prym market a specific espadrille thread, however, I opted for perle thread as a cheaper and more readily available option.  With a slim crewel needle, stitching was much easier than anticipated and any mis-stitching was easily undone.   
Next to pin the foot section in place, bearing in mind that the piece is shaped for left and right fitting - the larger side of the foot section is for the outside.  Again, pin in place and evenly so that the left and right slightly overlap the stitched heel section.
Again blanket stitched the front section in place.  Where the foot overlaps the heel section, align and overlap the blanket stitches to look like a single stitch.  Finally, the sides then need to be stitched invisibly or decoratively - either way use a strong thread.
Finally all done in an afternoon - no doubt quicker next time.  Most importantly, they did fit and were comfortable to walk in and I was well pleased for my first attempt.
While the Prym pattern only offers one style option, I'm sure that adapting for mules and all manner of designs will be pretty straight forward.  If this post has inspired you to get espadrille creative too, I would love to see a photo of the finished result.


  1. Great article! I know this is an older post but I've only just discovered Prym soles and made these yesterday. I have just added them to my Joe's Toes online shop. I'm now thinking of upcycling old charity shop belts to make strappy sandals.

    1. Thanks Amanda - I'm just about to push espadrilles again for this summer. Sounds like you have lots of great creative ideas for these fun makes :)