Painted converse are a great way to express yourself and make any outfit much more interesting! ...Unfortunately, painted shoes can cost up to $200 online. Luckily, there's a way to make them yourself! In this tutorial I'll show you how to paint your shoes with a galaxy theme- and I'll also show you how to paint a tardis if you want to make them extra timey-wimey. (time travel ability not guaranteed) So grab those boring old shoes and some paint- let's make them beautiful.
Step 1: Getting Supplies
For this DIY you will need:
- A pair of converse- you can buy them new or clean up some used ones. I use nail polish remover and some rags for the rubber part but I've heard that rubbing alcohol works well too.
- anything you can stuff the shoes with (plastic bags, scrap fabric- anything you can get paint on)
- Acrylic paint in the colors you'll need- you can find it at any craft store.
- A scrap piece of fabric or paper towel
- some brushes- I recommend a really fine-point brush and a slightly bigger square one
- a fine-point sharpie or any other similar permanent marker
- painter's tape or masking tape- as long as it's not duct tape you should be good to go :)
- Gesso or white acrylic paint
- a palette or a scrap piece of wood to mix your paint on
- a toothpick
- spray matte varnish- you should be able to find it at an art store. This one isn't essential but I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT if you really want your hard work to last a long time.
Once you have all your supplies together, let's get started!
Step 2: Prepping the Shoes
To start off, take the laces off of the shoes and put the painter's tape over any area that you don't want to cover. I put my tape on the rubber white parts of the converse and later put it on the logo as well. You'll then want to stuff the shoes with anything you want- I used scrap fabric and plastic bags. Just keep in mind that you may get paint on whatever you choose to stuff the shoes with.
Step 3: Starting to Smudge
In this step we'll start to make the blue and purple gas clouds. Take your paper towel/scrap fabric and dip it in the color of your choice and rub it into the fabric of the sneaker so that it blends in a little bit. I found it better to do this step gradually so that you had more time to really get the clouds the way you want them without having to worry about messing up. You might also want to mix a little white in your original color and smudge it into your original cloud to make it more realistic. All you're doing is rubbing different colors of paint into the shoe. And if you're less than thrilled with your clouds by the time you're done with this step, don't worry- It'll end up looking a lot better than you originally expected in the end.
Step 4: Big Stars and Streaks
Now you'll want to take a little white paint on your fine point brush and draw sets of wavy stripes along the highlights of your clouds. Don't worry about having your stripes look exactly like the ones in the picture- as long as the stripes are on the light parts of your clouds it'll look just fine. If you're nervous about messing this step up like I was, you can take a very small amount of paint at a time so that you can really take time to get a feel of how you want the stripes to be. Once you're done with that, draw some bigger stars by putting a small dot of white paint on the shoe and then dragging your brush from the center out to create the cross shape.
Step 5: Counting Stars
Now it's finally time to add the stars! To do this, just use your toothpick as a "brush". Dip it into some white paint and just poke the shoes. Over and over and over again. Trust me, I'm a professional. Once you think the shoes have enough stars, take a second to admire them. You're almost there. If you don't want to add a tardis then you can skip right to varnishing the shoes! If you do, I'll show you how to paint one in the next step. :)
Step 6: Just Add a T.A.R.D.I.S.- Style #1
Now it's time to paint the blue box! ~LOOK AT THE PICTURES IF YOU NEED HELP~
First take your gesso and paint a slanted rectangle.
Now paint two small parallel lines coming out from said slanted rectangle.
Connect those two parallel lines and fill in the shape you just made with white paint. this makes the blue stand out more.
Then make a square on the bottom by painting two lines coming out from the bottom and fill it in.
Now paint on the top using similarly to the way you made the other shapes.
Fill in the details with blue and white paint and fine point sharpies. Yay!
Step 7: The Blue Box- Style #2
This is the second style of the tardis I'm going to show you how to paint- I ended up doing one style per shoe. Once again, refer to the pictures as well as the instructions.
Paint a slanted rectangle pointing towards the toe of the shoe.
Paint two lines slanting the opposite way from the original slanted triangle.
Connect these two lines and then paint another parallelogram on top of the shape you've created so far.
Fill in the three shapes you've made and start painting them blue and adding details with fine point markers. Looking at a reference picture of the tardis always helps.
Step 8: Finishing Up
You're so close! The last step we have to do is varnish the shoes. You might want to either do this outside or in a shed or garage, as this varnish smells terrible and isn't good for other people (or you, really) to breathe in. If you decide to do this indoors you'll want to lay out enough newspaper to cover any areas that might get sprayed. Once you're ready, cover your nose and mouth and spray the shoes lightly/moderately with the varnish- keep in mind that the more varnish you spray on the slightly lighter the color may be and the shoes may become a little more stiff.
Step 9: DONE!
Finally, remove anything you stuffed your shoes with, take the tape off, and put the laces back on. You're done! Have fun showing off your hard work, and of course, if you've painted yourself a pair of shoes put a link in the comments! I would love to see it! Keep up the good work and stay nerdy :)