I love having a ton of sneakers to choose from. They're comfy and if you have the perfect ones, you can even rock them with a dress! And while I love the look of designer sneakers, there's no way I'd ever be willing to pay $650 for a pair.
Um, yeah. Those shoes above? Totally awesome. Amazing, really. But $650? That's not something that I think I will EVER be able to afford. But guess what? I can afford a pair of $6 jobbies from Wal-Mart, 1/4 yard of black lace and some tie dye no problemo!
For this project you will need:
White sneakers (mine are Walmart for around $6)
1/4 yard black lace
old toothbrush and baking soda
First things first, we've got to change the color of these guys so that they resemble our inspiration Jimmy Choos. To do that, first wash your shoes as well as you can in a sink. Don't toss them in the washer, just scrub as you can by hand. Keep them wet and then apply your first color of dye... in this case I'm starting with the orange.
Add your red and continue around the shoe.
FYI - to keep my work space clean, I dyed my shoes inside of a plastic tub!
Wrap your shoes up well so that they don't dry out and allow to sit for 6+ hours. I typically go overnight.
Rinse the shoes until the water runs clear and then allow to dry. I'd really recommend air drying (read the paragraph below for a bit more detail or skip it altogether!)
Now, here' we've got an example. See the shoe on the right? It's taken on a much lighter color than I really need to imitate the color of our designer inspiration. The whole reason why is because I put these shoes in the dryer to dry. I have absolutely NO clue why it happens but the color fades every time on me when I dry SHOES in the dryer right after rinsing the dye (plus they shrink to the point where they don't fit me comfortably anymore). I took and went over the shoes with one more round of orange dye, allowed to sit six hours, rinsed and then allowed to dry in the sun and got much better results. That's the shoe on the left... MUCH better.
Most of the time your rubber sole won't take on a bunch of color from the dye, but sometimes with stronger colors, like red, they'll take on the slightest tinge. Simply take an old toothbrush and scrub the soles with a mixture of baking soda and water. You want the consistency to be THICK so just keep adding a touch of water until you can easily spread it. The shoe on the left has been cleaned and the right has not. What a difference!
Now let's start wrapping this project up by adding our black lace. First off your selection of lace will make or break the DIY I think. I purchased my lace off of memory, and if you can see it doesn't really match the inspiration pair. If you're worried about making the shoes as similar as possible, be sure to save the pic of the originals to your phone so that you have a reference and aren't just buying lace blindly! Oh, and go to an honest to goodness fabric store for the best selection! Now, back to the tutorial:
Trim a piece to fit over the toe area of the shoe.
On the back side of your lace piece brush on some Fabric Fusion. Place over the shoe and press down onto the shoe's canvas.
Give the shoes a minute or two for the glue to start to take hold. Use sharp and easy to handle scissors to trim up the excess. Do NOT use your good fabric scissors as the glue will mess them up!
You may need to apply some extra glue and a little bit of pressure to get areas of the lace to actually adhere. Chances are you'll have issues right round the rubber soles so run your finger around and apply glue as necessary.
Repeat for both shoes and allow the glue to completely dry.
Okay - I THOUGHT that a fabric marker would work around the edges and it will except where you accidentally got glue onto the piping of your shoes. Though it is not pictured, after a failed attempt with the marker, I wound up going around the piping, elastic and edges with a stiff brush and black fabric paint and it was super easy and quick! With the pattern in the lace, even if you mess up with the paint, you won't even notice!
Let your paint dry and you're ready to rock out your designer inspired, $15 pair of sneakers.
And just to compare, you'll pay 2.3% of the cost of the "real deal". Not bad, I say!
I hope you enjoyed this frugal take on a pair of super fine and super expensive Jimmy Choo kicks!
And while I've got you, maybe you'll want to check out my roundup of other fun sneakers you can make from all over the internet. There are 26 different pairs, in fact!
And head on over to my blog Dream a Little Bigger for even more shoe makeovers if the mood strikes you!