Tutorial | Ruby Rose Boots: Shortening a Tall Boot

I’ve had a lot of trouble with Cosplay shoes, and any customized shoe is usually the hardest part of any build for me! I’ve tried boot covers to varying degrees of success, and I’ve tried major shoe reconstruction–but I think I’ve finally gotten comfortable enough with the process so that I’m not losing sleep over them any more. Ruby’s shoes are actually very doable, and simpler then a lot of other shoe builds because her shoes are based off of black combat boots that you can buy pretty much anywhere!

I spent a lot of time sifting through the combat boots on Amazon, trying to find a style that I liked and found most suitable for my needs. I ended up selecting Unionbay Supreme Combat Boots (which I had to buy off of Ebay because Amazon did not have my size).

Mainly I was looking for a black combat boot that thicker in the shaft so it wasn’t obviously just fabric, and had a strap across the front of the shoe so I would not have to modify it. If the shoe had a strap across the calf area that would be fine to because then you can just cut it off and glue it down across the bottom. I also was looking for the bottom grip area to be thicker.

MATERIALS:rwbymaterials{ 1 } pair of black combat boots
rubbing alcohol
red leather angelus paint
leather sealer/finisher
exacto knife
sewing machine
red cotton sateen
binder clips
hair dryer


1. First let’s get the boot cut out and ready. I scaled the boot and found that the boot on my should only be 10.5″ tall along the shaft (not including the base of the boot). So using a sharpie I marked off 11″ and using a pair of scissors just cut out across the line. For the zipper area you can dab a bit of super glue or hot glue to make sure it doesn’t come apart later.part12. This step is for people who have padding in their boot like I did. We need to remove the padding to get rid of all the bulk so take your ruler and sharpie and on the INSIDE of your boot mark your .5″ seam allowance. Using an exacto knife/scissors carefully cut away the layer of padding along your seam allowance, making sure not to cut your boot.part23. Fold down the edge .5″ and use binder clips to hold in place. Note* Cut the zipper short .5″ to get rid of the bulk.part44. Sew down, if possible use a walking foot. Don’t sew through the zipper, or your machine will scream at you. part34. You’re done with the  basic boot and you’re now ready to paint and add the ruffle. I’ll be posting a tutorial for this section next week!part55. EXTRA STEP: For those of you whose boots did not have an ankle strap, but a calf strap, go ahead and use a seam ripper to carefully remove the calf strap. Then just cement glue it down across the ankle. You may need to adjust the sizing of the strap.


5 thoughts on “Tutorial | Ruby Rose Boots: Shortening a Tall Boot

  1. thegeekoutletllc says:

    so…. not to be a copy cat or anything, but after recently watching RWBY, I decided to be Ruby Red as well. I love reading your tutorials because, well, I’ve never had to modify a pair of boots before. And knowing that you were working on the same project gave me an extra boost of confidence. I’ve been trying to figure out which boots to buy and I think I may have found them – thanks to your blog! Thank you so much for sharing. I look forward to seeing the completed costume. 🙂

    • Yuqi says:

      Hey there! No, you’re not a copy cat I’m actually excited to hear other people are cosplaying as her :3! I can’t wait to see your cosplay, and glad to be of help <3! Are you on the west coast? Where are you planning on debuting/wearing her? 😀

      • thegeekoutletllc says:

        I wish I was on the West Coast, but I’m in North Carolina. I don’t remember off the top of my head which convention we’re going to next, but I do know there’s one coming up in April. Fingers crossed. Hope it’s done then! When do you plan on having yours done?

      • Yuqi says:

        Ah! The East Coast! I’ve always wanted to make it out to an east coast con some day *^*. Katsucon looks so fun! I’m hoping for Fanime in May XD!

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