Lately I have embarked upon several comic/mod podge/vinyl projects. The first to be completed is the Shoes Project. This weekend my daughter and I went to Nana's and completed these in a day. My daughter finished her Hightops in just a few hours. I spent more time on mine, maybe five hours. Point being, these can be done in an afternoon and ready to wear that night.
Step 1: Assemble Materials
I bought a Marvel Price guide at a used book store because it had some awesome glossy pages in the middle chock-full of mini pictures, just perfect for shoe-size art. My daughter used the funnies from her Nana's Sunday paper.
The only other things that you need are:
~ Mod Podge
~ Bowl for glue
~ Foam and/or Bristle brushes
~ Sandpaper for scuffing up slippery surfaces
Start cutting away. Anything and everything that makes sense for scale. I found that I wanted a large selection so that I could arrange them in an aesthetically-pleasing manner(isn't that always important!).
The only prep work we needed to do was to remove the laces on the hightops and scuff the shiny patent leather for better glue adhesion. I suppose if your shoes are a bit dirty or dusty you may want to lightly brush them clean.
Step 2: Arrange Then Glue. Repeat.
That's about it. Here are some tips and tricks I learned along the way. (there are one or two very good 'ibles that I read on making comic shoes, and I'd suggest perusing those, too!)
1. Play around with your pictures to get the arrangement you like. The edges can meet or overlap. Depends on the pics and the look you are going for. If you need to trim for a perfect fit, snip a little at a time, until it's good. When you're sure you like it, then apply the glue onto the paper.
2. Bend pictures over parts of shoe edges or create lines with your fingernail tips for specific shapes on the shoes, be it straps, corners or heels, then cut along those formed lines/folds.
3. For rounded parts, and a lot of the shoe is curved, cut slits along all edges of each picture before you spread the glue on. This will help the picture mold onto the shoe shape very nicely.
4. Spread a good amount of glue onto paper. As you place the picture onto the shoe, use your fingers to massage the paper on, lightly spreading pressure from center to edges. Some glue should ooze out, just spread that outward onto shoe surface.
5. Use some style when deciding where and where not to put the pictures. Framing the comics with the color of the shoe sets them off nicely.
6. After you are finished applying all of your pictures, wait an hour or two and then apply a top coat to seal everything in. I actually did this twice to the platforms as I intend on selling them, so wanted them nice and wear/weatherproof. It actually looks better if you apply just one coat. Each additional coat adds texture lines from the glue, even though I used foam brushes. Maybe I just need to practice more.
Step 3: Along the Way...
I did the big, main pictures first, then filled in the gaps, then super-imposed any cutouts over those.
It was tedious at first, but after I got the hang of it I greatly enjoyed the process.
Take your time and do the best job you can. It'll pay off in the end!
Step 4: Almost Done
We took a break for dinner while the first application dried.
After dinner we painted the top coat on, sealing all of our hard work in!
Step 5: Final Details
These platform shoes are slippery and need some visual oomph on the sole area. I cut two shapes of light pink leather and glued them on with Black E6000 glue. Best to squeeze a bunch of glue onto shape, then carefully press onto area exactly where you want it, pull back off and wait 2 minutes, then press back onto for good. Press down all parts, especially edges with your fingers. It can get a little messy and is kinda stinky. Any glue that dries onto the sole pad can be rolled away or picked off.
Step 6: The Glamour Shots
My Daughter modeled mine and I hers. (I didn't feel like painting my toenails.) :-)
I'll be putting them in this Spring's Fashion Shows.
Maybe I'll pair one with a Prom Dress, and another with a Conservative Suit.