Monday, April 16, 2012

DIY: Painted Cap Toe Ballet Flats

I have this dream that someday I'll be rich and famous and giving a magazine a tour of my house and after we see my fabulous craft studio, outdoor pizza oven, and special room with trampoline floors, I open the door to my walk in shoe closet to reveal the world's most comprehensive collection of cute ballet flats. It is going to be amazing.

My collection got just a little sweeter on a recent trip to Walmart when I came across these flats. They are a perfect blank canvas and best of all they're only 5 bucks. It took all my strength not to fill my cart with them Supermarket Sweep style. I settled on starting with one pair to make some DIY cap toe flats in a punchy blue color. To make your own all you will need a pair of fabric flats, some tape and fabric paint.

Start by taping off the top of your shoe to make the cap area. I found this was easiest to do if I was wearing them at the time, that way I made sure I got the line straight and even. After you've taped off your cap (taking care to press down the tape so no paint seeps under) you may also want to tape off the sole of the shoe to keep things looking neat.

After one coat of paint

Then use a fabric paint and a sponge brush to paint the taped off area. I wanted a bright blue color so I used Simply Screen in Blue Hawaii, but I considered a neon pink, and of course I think these would look great in glitter.

Some tips for painting: if your shoes are dark and your paint is lighter like mine, you'll need a few coats. You want to use multiple thin coats, like a manicure. Resist the urge to just glob it on thickly. Also, paint carefully so you don't accidently pull up the tape and ruin your line. Once the paint is set, but not totally dry, slowly peel off the tape. Let the shoes dry for the recommended amount of time and cure according to the instructions (my paint, for example is supposed to be heat set, so I hit it with the iron).

Done! Pretty easy right? I love them. Now I need a hundred more. And a giant closet to keep them in. 

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