Glitter Sticker Shoes
Transform an old pair of shoes into awesome, funky footwear. Super easy, cheap, and done in a few hours.
Glitter, Stickers, and Those Shoes You Never Wear
Shoes (fabric, plastic, leather, whatever!)
Mod Podge gloss decoupage glue — $5–10
Loose glitter, 1 oz. — $1–5
Stickers — $1
Something to hold the glue and glitter
I used a small book of goldfish stickers from the 99 cent store, about half of a 1.5 oz. jar of loose glitter, and some old heels. You should be able to find Mod Podge at any art supply or craft store in various sizes and finishes: I've got a large size of the glossy, but for this project a small jar would be more than enough.
For the shoes, what you want is a pair which are in fairly good repair but have been living in the back of your closet. Any size or material will work. This is a great way to transform shoes with a basic design you like, but in a color or material that's scuffed or grass stained or just kind of kind of eh.
About a year ago I bought these fake leather heels at a thrift store for $3, but I haven't worn them much because, well. They're a little boring, they have a few scuffs, and I have other black shoes.
Wipe them clean with a wipe or a damp paper towel and set them aside.
Mix Your Glitter
Pour a little Mod Podge into your bowl/palette. (I used the top of a mason jar, since I always have a bunch of those around.) Then start sprinkling in glitter, about a spoonful at a time, mixing as you go. You want to have a smooth consistency, not too runny but not too thick to brush easily, with about 1/3–1/2 being glitter and 2/3–1/2 podge. You can use whatever color or grain of glitter you want, depending on the desired look: I'm using a fine-grained iridescent green.
Fine-grained glitter will cover up more space faster. But big glitter pieces can also look cool and sparkly. Up to you.
Don't worry, the podge isn't going to stink up the room or make you loopy. It's basically just white glue, close to the stuff you used in elementary school.
Hold one shoe on your hand, as you would if you were polishing it, and paint with the other.
Dip in your brush, and start painting in slow, even strokes.
I ran around the edges first, and then worked my way in, going all the same direction. It's a little like painting your nails — don't worry if the color's not perfectly even on the first coat. Just try to apply a thin, even coat with no big lumps. If you go over the edges, just scrape it off as you go with the side of your nail.
Here are the shoes with one coat. Depending on the thickness of the mix and the size of the glitter you're using, you may be getting more or less color and coverage. The podge will start out white, making the color a bit lighter, but it dries clear.
You should be able to tell when the coat's dry because the podge will have gone transparent. It takes around 15–20 minutes — around about the time it took me to paint the second shoe.
Once one shoe is dryish, start its second coat, just as you did the first.
You can add coats until you get the color/level of glitteriness you're going for. I did three coats on these.
When you've got your glitter done, rinse out your brush in warm water, and make sure you've put the cap back on the jar of podge.
Sticker Funtime Yay
Get out your stickers. These are just a plain ol' stickers, nothing fancy. Stick them on, spaced out however you like.
They probably won't stick down completely. Don't worry, you'll be going over them again with the podge.
Take a Break
Wait and let the shoes dry for 45–60 minutes. Take a nap, order Chinese food, watch an episode or two of your favorite show, start writing your Instructables post. Whatever.
Making the Stickers Stick
Okay, now that they're dry, pour out a little plain podge and get out your washed and hopefully now dry paintbrush. Press the stickers down and paint over each of them. They may curl up a little: don't worry! Just apply a little podge to the back and stick them again. You're going to be doing a few coats, so don't worry if they're poking up a little at first.
Let them dry 10–15 minutes, then do another pass over the stickers, pressing the edges down lightly as you go over them. If they're gapping, you can fill them in a little with the podge. Remember, even if it looks like you're covering up the stickers with white, the podge will dry clear. So just paint on over them.
Repeat until the stickers are staying down in place the way you want them. Mine took 3 coats.
Cover Coats, Aka I Swear You're Almost Done
Now do a coat all over the shoe to protect the stickers and keep the glitter from flaking off. Depending on how smooth they're looking, you might want to do another final coat to seal them.
Rinse out your brush, clean up your workspace.
Let them dry overnight.
Good news for wearability: podge is waterproof! Well, reasonably: I wouldn't put them on to go fly fishing or anything. But you should be able to wear these puppies on a wet lawn and then just wipe them off with a damp sponge afterwards.