DIY Sparkle-Toe Pumps

This DIY has been on my list for over a year and a half, and I was re-inspired to finally tackle it when I saw this post on sparkly canvas shoes by the ladies at Honestly…WTF.

I wanted blue shoes for my wedding. So I bought a pair of ivory fabric pumps and handed them to my trusty cobbler, who dyed them a light shade of my favorite color.

Alas, on our wedding day, it rained and rained, and then rained some more. It was great for the wedding – it created a cozy and romantic atmosphere. But it was bad news for my shoes, which apparently hadn’t been rain-proofed.

So they’ve been sitting in a box since March 2010. Until this week, that is, when I grabbed some blue fabric paint, fabric glue, and assorted crystal stick-ons from the local Michael’s store.

I put some painters’ tape around the bottom of my shoes to protect the wooden soles from getting splattered, and then applied two coats of the fabric paint with a makeup sponge. You can see the before and after above.

I let them dry overnight, away from the cats – to avoid waking up to blue-tongued smurf cats.

The next night I penciled in the line where I wanted the sparkles to start on the toe, and began gluing them on.

I started with two rows of the largest size crystal.

Then three rows of the medium sized crystal.

And I filled in the rest with the smallest crystals. I ended up having to use tweezers to pick them up and glue them on towards the end, because the glue had dried on my fingers and was creating a sticky mess.

Over the course of one episode of Mad Men and one True Blood season finale rerun (I like to watch tv or have music on when I craft), I was done!

Tada! They came out looking so professional — to my delighted surprise. And it was super easy to do.

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14 Responses to DIY Sparkle-Toe Pumps

  1. Liv says:

    This is so awesome! I would have been totally sad that my wedding shoes were ruined, but you revived them and they look dope.
    This DIY seems doable for someone who is lazy and not-so-crafty…basically me.

    • Ava says:

      It’s totally doable, Liv! Whether the color will hold up in the rain, or whether the crystals will stay on after a late night, though, are completely different questions. ;) Thanks for your comment!
      - Ava

  2. noelani says:

    They looks very professional, I am really amazed at the outcome from the fabric paint, gave those shoes a new lease on life. As does the cap toe bling. Maybe I’ll attempt a rehab on a pair before giving them the heave-ho.

    • Ava says:

      Hi Noelani,

      It’s tempting, isn’t it? I am now on a re-painting, bedazzling frenzy. I kind of want to do a similar thing with red fabric paint.

      I totally encourage you to try it – you’ll have nothing to lose if it’s a pair of shoes you’re about to give up on anyways :)

      - Ava

  3. Safira says:

    I am really impressed by these! I have always wanted to do them, but never had the chance. They look just as good as any shoes you would buy, if not better.

    Good work!

  4. Stacie says:

    Hey Ava! I absolutely love your shoes and your blog!!! These are amazing. I have had some little rhinestones sitting around for a while and I think this is the PERFECT project to use them. :) I also included your shoes in a roundup post on my DIY craft blog . :) I thought you would like to know!

  5. Jeanee says:

    WOW! You did an amazing job on that blue!

    I featured your DIY on my blog today:


  6. Pingback: 15 Fabulous DIY Shoe Makeovers | You Put It On

  7. Tishsa says:

    How did the shoes hold up!?!

    • Ava says:

      Hi Tishsa! Not too bad, I must say. They cracked a bit on the sides near the toes – the fabric paint goes on thick so it affects the way the cloth moves. But all the rhinestones stayed on!

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