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How can I Decorate Flip Flops?

Malcolm Tatum
Updated: Jan 24, 2024

Flip flops are one of the most comfortable and inexpensive types of warm weather footwear currently on the market. Available is sizes for adults and children, flip flops are more casual than sandals, can be slipped into easily and are ideal for walking through a sandy beach. It is also easy to decorate flip flops and make that mass-produced pair something that is uniquely your own.

One of the easiest ways to engage in flip flop decoration is to use a set of permanent markers to draw designs along the sides, top, and toe strap of the flip flops. This type of freeform flip flop decorating opens the door for all sorts of interesting looks. For example, a plain pair of yellow flip flops can be given a new look by using the permanent markers to add flowers, stars or even cartoon images to the various surfaces of each flip flop. With a little imagination, you can decorate flip flops in such a way that no one will ever be able to replicate the look.

Another approach you can use to decorate flip flops is simple iron on transfers. While intended for use with tee shirts, it is still possible to place the transfer on the surface of the flip flop and use an iron to transfer the design. Be sure to use a thin towel between the transfer and the iron, as the heat from the iron could damage the plastic foam of the flip flops.

You can also decorate flip flop toe straps by adding elements such as rhinestones or beads. All you need for this type of decoration is an idea and a hot glue gun. For an alternative medium for use to decorate flip flops, consider gluing on buttons or even silk flowers for a fun and feminine look.

For people who are exceptionally detailed when it comes to a plan to decorate flip flops, there is always the option of adding thin cording around the edges of the flip flop body. These can actually be sewn in by using the large hook style of needles used to repair fishing nets. Cover the hand with a protective glove, secure the cording through the eye of the needle and proceed to stitch around the edges of the flip flops. The hook needle will easily push through the foam plastic body and the entire process will only take ten to fifteen minutes.

In addition to using these methods to decorate flip flops, many of them can be adapted to work with sandal decorating projects. However, keep in mind that sandals are often made of leather and other tougher materials than the simple flip flop. This means that with sandal decoration, it is usually better to go with the addition of elements that are glued into position or inked or painted onto the surface, rather than attempting to sew some type of accent through the surface of the material.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Malcolm Tatum
By Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing to become a full-time freelance writer. He has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including WiseGeek, and his work has also been featured in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and newspapers. When not writing, Malcolm enjoys collecting vinyl records, following minor league baseball, and cycling.
Discussion Comments
By anon289872 — On Sep 06, 2012

I personally don’t like to buy flip-flops at walmart, hobby lobby or dollar stores because they are foam flip-flops (EVA), they don’t last long and it is not very comfortable.

I like the rubber flip-flops; they last forever and are super comfy. My favorite brand is the Cariris, and their price is not bad at all.

By anon288664 — On Aug 31, 2012

Decorated flip flops add style to any outfit. It is fun to be creative and think of new designs to try out. The only thing about decorating dollar store brands is that they wear out so easily. I'd rather the flip flops be firm and last me a long time, especially after all that time you spend trying to decorate them.

I know the Cariris flip flops work great when it comes to decorating and they also last a very long time because they are made of rubber.

By julies — On Jun 13, 2011

I was recently in Hobby Lobby and they had several free tutorials papers on how to decorate flip flops. I took these ideas and several pairs of flip flops to some teenage girls that I work with once a week.

One of the favorite ways they decorated them was to cut strips of colorful bandannas and tie them on both sides of the thong. This really made them look colorful and was a fun, easy way to dress them up.

By Bhutan — On May 13, 2011

I think that decorated flip flops are so cute. It is a great activity to do with kids. You can also hot glue small plastic jewels on to the thong area to make a nice design. You could use the plastic jewels that you use to make bracelets with and make an alternating design with a few colors.

You can get cheap flip flops at an dollar store and do a variety of designs on each with colored permanent markers. By using stencils you can really make a pretty design that you can repeat throughout the flip flops. Those are really my flip flop decorating ideas.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing...
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