Every other week, CRAFT’s awesome interns tell about the projects they’re building in the Craft: Labs, the trouble they’ve gotten into, and what they’ll make next. By Meara O’Reilly, projects intern My kindergarten teacher Mr. Harris always kept a bin in the classroom where parents could donate old computers or typewriters; when a kid was angry or had too much energy, they’d be sent to the bin, where they could tinker and, well, tear apart the contents until they stopped simmering and started exploring. I learned a lot about basic machinery and material composition just from taking things apart with abandon. One of two “Converse A La Mod” projects in CRAFT Volume 07 (Shoe Time!), the All-Star Fabric Swap project uses this “technique” to great effect. I’d always wanted to make my own shoes, but was intimidated to make something so structural and weight-bearing from scratch. Since this project uses an old pair of Converse All Star sneakers as a pattern or template, there’s not a lot of worrying about how to re-invent the wheel (so to speak), just some fun tear-down and hands-on learning about how a classic shoe is constructed. To test the project, I modded a pair of the high-tops in the CRAFT Labs, replacing the old fabric with a new navy blue with white polka dots. All it takes is some simple sewing and shoe glue. Then I made a San Francisco Giants themed pair for a CRAFT event at the 2008 “Stitch N’ Pitch” baseball game at AT&T Park. For the fabric, I used Giants bandanas from the team’s 50th anniversary celebration, with huge SF logos and a crazy Golden Gate Bridge print. Now that I’ve made a couple of pairs of these, I feel ready to branch out in the world of shoe reupholstery and design a pair for my sister for Christmas. I’ll post pictures here once I give them to her, to show how they turned out!