Dress Up Your Kids’ Shoes for a Christmas Countdown

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The holidays are upon us, meaning one thing for most kids: The countdown is on for the arrival of Santa Claus!

While cookies and milk will welcome the big guy in red on Christmas Eve, another tradition can get the kiddos tapping into their imagination in the days before (and can help parents clear out their closets!).

In many European countries, youngsters leave shoes out for St. Nick, who fills them with goodies like candy, fruits and small toys on Dec. 6, also known as Little Christmas. Kids decorate and personalize the shoes (so Father Christmas doesn’t mix up anyone’s gifts!), making for a fun family tradition. You can mix it up and hide little treats in the shoes each day to countdown to Christmas. 

If you have some old shoes your kids have grown out of, break out the crafting supplies, leftover Christmas decorations, and get to work!


What you need:

  • One shoe (per child)
  • Fabric paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Spray glitter
  • Hot glue
  • Permanent marker
  • Various décor (ribbons, bells, stickers, etc.)

This project is meant to spark your kids’ creativity so a lot of the decorating will be up to them! Here’s a good starter plan:

Fabric paint is a good way to dress up an old pair of shoes. Let your kiddo pick their favorite colors and get to work making a masterpiece (an apron might help save parents from some headaches!). Once the paint is dry, spray glitter is an easy way to add even more pizzazz. Break out the hot glue gun and help your little one adorn the shoe with lots of bells and whistles. Their imaginations will spring to life as they arrange everything from buttons to feathers to holiday décor like artificial holly and berries.

Once they’re satisfied with their creations, kids can add their name in marker for a final personal touch. Set the shoes out on a mantelpiece or table and then watch them anxiously await the arrival of St. Nick!



Kids can make a new shoe creation each year from outgrown shoes. Or, if you’re using Jenzy to get the best and longest-lasting fit for your kids’ shoes, recycle and update the same St. Nick shoe!

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