Rice and Jeans

food, fashion, and life in Belize


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Begging for Bread

Heat and humidity are a destructive combination. But let’s also add salt to the air for the people along the coast, just to make it more interesting. Belize’s climate is a hostile situation for many things:  Cars, outdoor furniture, wood, humans, anything metal (yes that includes costume jewelry, belts, and metal parts on purses), and, the most popular victim, shoes.

It was a Thursday night, I was all dressed up in my new mint skinny jeans with my perfectly matching Jessica Simpson wedges (which were only 2 months old at the time). I was walking out the gate to the car, when I tripped on something. I looked down, didn’t see anything.  But it was dark, and the street is not exactly smooth, so I blamed it on the loose pebbles. Continued walking, tripped again! WTF! It was then that I realized the culprit:  the sole of my right wedge was dangling, yes, it was “begging for bread”.  And upon closer inspection, the left wedge was also getting hungry.

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DAMMIT!  My outfit was ruined, I had to fall back on my Nine West orange espadrille wedges and pretend I was “colour-blocking” on purpose.  I had only worn these shoes 2 times, so  I was very disappointed in Jessica.  I’ve had Payless shoes that lasted longer than this!

Here they are laughing at me:

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So I banished them to the step!  And they sat there in time-out for a couple months watching me wear other shoes that DIDN’T fall apart.  Finally, I decided I needed to have them back in commission.

From experience I knew that Krazy glue just wouldn’t cut it.  The wedge was hard plastic, and the sole was rubber.  There was Gorilla Glue, but that would require clamping because apparently it expands as it dries.  This job called for epoxy.  I only had black epoxy on hand, but it was OK because the sole was black and the wedge was dark brown.  But, obviously you would want to use a clear epoxy for other situations or if you are very messy.

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So, just finish peeling of the dangling soles.

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And clean both surfaces with acetone.

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I used nail polish remover.  Remove any dirt and old glue.  Careful not to ruin the nails!

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Then read the instructions properly, mine said mix equal parts of A and B together.  Make sure to use a disposable plate and mixing tool.  I used the end of this cheap paintbrush.  Make sure you are in a well-ventilated area.

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Mix it together thoroughly, and try not to breathe because OMG it smells like death in a drain mixed with swamp!

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Now, you have about 4 minutes to work with it until it gets hard.  Quickly, but neatly, spread a thin layer on the bottom of the wedge.  I used this piece of cardboard to do the spreading.

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Not too thick or it will cause oozing.

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Then press the sole back on, carefully lining it up with the edges.  Quickly wipe away any excess.

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Wait four hours for the epoxy to cure.

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And voila! Good as new.  In fact, better than new! The straps will probably bust off before those soles go anywhere again!