Make Stuff Monday: Glitter Boots

With glitter shoes and boots being all the rage right now, and DIYs on how to mimic popular (yet expensive) trends, I figured I’d give glittering a pair of boots a shot.  At first, I thought about getting a new pair to glitter, but decided I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, and wasn’t able to find anything suitable at the thrift stores.  So I turned to my closet, and dug through my 70-something pairs of shoes and found these cowgirl-inspired boots, which would be perfect.  I picked them up at Forever21 for around $18 about a year ago, and while I wore them a decent amount, I figured it was time to give them a facelift.  I’m working on not wearing as much black as I used to, and decided adding a little sparkle to an otherwise plain black boot was a step in the right direction.  And it turns out, the straps around the ankles were removable!

All the pics in this post are clickable if you want to see them bigger!

Once I got my glitter and decided what colors I wanted to add to my boots, I masked off the area that I wanted to glitter.  I also tucked the ends of the non-removable straps back into themselves.   This way, I didn’t have to worry about being perfectly neat with my application.  I also took a few minutes to brush them off (just with my hands) and remove any fuzz or dog hair I could see, just because I didn’t want to have to worry about it affecting the glittery goodness.

These pics were taken pre-brushing, as shown by the dog hair still on the boots.  Also, Christin’s Floor Babies have made cameos in these pics.

As you can see, I actually brought the masking tape down into the inside of the boot, to cover the part of the front that stuck up a bit.  I wanted to make sure I didn’t get any glitter on that front part at all.

Once I was done masking, I mixed my glitter with Aleene’s Permanent Fabric Glue.  Since the boots were faux suede, I figured fabric glue would be a better starting point than Mod Podge, and I knew I wanted to mix glitter with the glue instead of just doing the spread glue-apply-glitter method.  Not only is it neater from a crafting standpoint, but I figured sealing the glitter in directly with the glue would result in less fallout as I wore them.

I mixed 3 different types of Tulip brand Fashion Glitter together: a silver, a coppery color, and a fine silver holographic (this shimmers rainbow!).  It wasn’t a very exact process, and I just kind of added glitter and stirred until I felt it looked pretty (and then added more, at the urging of Christin).  I mixed the glitter together in a small plastic pot that came with a cover, so that I could cover it and not worry about it drying out between coats (which ended up not being an issue, since I had very little left after doing both boots and just washed out the container).  I did make sure to make more than I thought I’d need, because I didn’t want to have to try and mix up the same mixture of colors if I ran out.  I wanted the amount of glitter and the colors to be the same on both boots.

Ok, that’s actually Christin mixing the glitter for me, because her nail art was so gosh darn cute!

Once the glitter was mixed up I started painting.  I used a smaller, angled brush for the edges, and then filled in with the biggest brush I had.  It took almost no time at all, and I was able to watch TV while painting.  I did one coat on each boot and let them dry overnight.

You can totally see the rainbow-reflecting glitter in the first coat!

As you can see, my single-coat coverage was pretty good.  But that’s because Christin kept yelling “MOAR GLITTER!” as I daintily dumped glitter into the mixing pot.  Had I gone with my initial instinct, I’d have most likely had to have done 3 coats to get this coverage.  The lesson?  When it doubt, MOAR GLITTER!!

I then applied a second coat, mixing a fresh batch of the same 3 glitter colors.  Again, not a real exact process, and I made sure that I’d have enough to do both shoes so that the colors were the same on both boots.  I left the masking tape where it was and let them dry again for a couple days.  After a couple days, I sealed them with one coat of Satin finish Mod Podge, letting them dry (again) for a couple days.  Once they were completely dry, I carefully removed the tape and re-wrapped the straps around them, buckling them up like they were when I got them.

Even the Floor Babies thought they were cute!  Aww!

I’ve only worn them once since I made them, but I got a lot of complements!  And I’ve had absolutely zero glitter fallout too, which is awesome (especially because my husband threatened swift removal of glitter-shedding items from the house).  I’m super happy with the way they turned out, and plan on rocking them more in spring, when there’s less threat of salt-damage (we’re finally getting some real winter weather here).  As I wear them more, I’ll be interested to see in how they hold up otherwise, because I couldn’t find a single tutorial that had a followup regarding wear and tear on glittered items.

All in all, I spent about $17 on the glitter, glue and Mod Podge, and have plenty left over for other projects (and oh, have there been other projects!), so this wasn’t a very money-intense project either.  Yay!

Overall, I’m really glad I decided to bite the bullet and glitter the backs of these boots.  I love the way they look with the strap running across the back, and how the sparkle is subtle but still there.  They’re no longer just a plain pair of cowgirl-inspired boots.  Now they’re unique and something no one else has!  If you’ve got a pair of boots or heels you’re looking to give a little extra oomph too, this might just be the project for you!

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Here are some other glitter DIYs for shoes, if you’re interested in giving this project a shot.  I used them all for inspiration and technique ideas when doing my boots.  They also show a few different places to apply glitter, such as the heel or the sole of a high heel!