10 Easy Ways to Refashion Your Shoes

Posted by on May 27, 2011

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A little tired of your footwear but not ready to throw in the, er, heel? Enter the shoe clip: A mainstay from back in the day, designed to give everyday shoes a whole new (but temporary) look. They’re enjoying a renaissance thanks to the overall “everything vintage” trend. We especially like this gorgeous faux-mink-and-rhinestone bridal pair from designer Lee Ann Belter. They’re perfect for brides and retro divas alike.
Learn how to make your own shoe clips from A Touch of Gray.

wire ribbon rosette shoe clip
Wire Ribbon Rosette Clip

For a deceptively easy shoe clip, start with a wire ribbon rosette. They’re so simple to make: Just cut a length of the flexible stuff, then pull one of the wires to gather, forming a rosette shape. Snip off the excess wire and hot glue to secure.
Check out the step-by-step for making these wire ribbon rosette shoe clips from BYOV.
pom pom shoe decorations
Pretty Little Pom-Poms and Buttons

OK, so maybe this DIY isn’t for those days when you need to meet a new boss or make that big board room presentation. But you’d be hard-pressed to find a cheerier shoe decoration than these rainbow pom-pom add-ons. How cute would they be for kids’ shoes? The buttons are more demure take on a similar approach.
Find out how to make pom-pom shoe decorations from Fat Girl Gets Dressed.
stud shoe decoration
Subtle Studs

Here’s another way to add a little edge to basic black pumps: Studs. While traditional metal-finish ones will always telegraph “punk” (no matter how cliche that word gets), adding black on black will offer a more refined look. Another unexpected way to use studs is to concentrate them on the back edge of the pump, like the ones seen here.
See how to add studs to high heels from Pursuit for Vintage.
brass studded flats
Brass Studded Flats

By virtue of being low-key, flats can handle a little more embellishment while still looking appropriate for day wear. This dramatic diagonal studded design in brass gives these fabric skimmers much-needed flair.
Learn the trick to guiding studs through fabric flats from Orange-Mushroom.
flutter fringe pumps
Flutter Fringe Pumps

This is another definite “statement” look, but one that can define a whole outfit (meaning you can wear this with the simplest black dress and still look unique). We were surprised with just how easy it is to do … it’s really just a cut-and-paste job! 
Check out how to DIY your own fringed high heels from Pursuit for Vintage.
anklet straps
Anklet Straps

Demure kitten heels look decidedly less so with the help of fine chains. Though they’d stand out against black tights, the risk of snags makes this shoe jewelry better for bare legs.
Check out the chain ankle strap step-by-step from Sunshine and Bones.
handpainted shoes
Handpainted Pair

If you’re good with a brush or paint pen, this DIY is for you. Just doodle your way all over a lighter-toned pair to make them really stand out from the crowd. (Remember to seal them, though!)
Get the secret for giving painted pumps staying power from DIY Life. Or, order your own pair of these pop-art inspired stilettos from Cocopunkz.
Ruffled Shoe Detail Upcycle
Ruffled Shoe Detail 

A little bit of pleating goes a long way for updating plain pumps. It’s made by attaching a scrap of trimming to a bit of elastic, so chances are you already have the materials on hand. And, if you go with a monochromatic material (like this black satin pleated ribbon), it’ll be subtle enough for everyday office wear. 
Learn how to create these slip-on shoe bands from Happy Together.
peacock feather heel upcycle
La Plume Ethere
Feather Heel Trim 

A single peacock feather creates an alternative focal point to heels that already have detailing on the vamp (that’s the part of the shoe near the toe for us non-cobblers). It’s best for shoes made of fabric, which tend to take glue better than leathers (or synthetics). 
Or order your own custom peacock feather shoes from La Plume Ethere.

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