Saddle shoes were very popular in the 1940s and 1950s, and are a must-have for anyone that loves mid-century fashion. Back in 2012, I made a pair of two-tone oxford brogues using bronze fabric paint. Now that I am slowly progressing towards a more vintage-inspired wardrobe, I find that I need a pair of black and white saddle shoes to supplement my wardrobe. And being me, I'd much rather make a pair myself than to buy a pair online.
So here's a simple tutorial for everyone out there who wants to make a pair too!
A pair of white plimsolls - I got mine from Target (If you're in the UK, Primark do them, too)
A pot of black fabric paint
A paint brush with a flat or sharp tip for precision during painting
Black fabric marker
Sticky tape - I used wash tape I have in my stash
1. Remove the shoelaces. Place sticky tape somewhere off the centre of the shoes. Also, tape the tongue of the shoe down so it doesn't get in the way while you paint.
2. Use the black fabric marker to mark a semi-circle on the back of the shoes. I followed the stitching pattern that was already on the plimsolls.
3. Start painting away! Don't be too worried about getting paint on the eyelets because you can wipe the paint off before it dries.
4. Wipe off any paint you have on the eyelets. You can also clean the insides using cotton buds.
5. Allow the paint to dry for a day, then set the paint with an iron. Avoid being too close to the rubber soles because you don't want to melt the rubber!
6. Put the laces back on and smile, because you now own a pair of saddle shoes!
Wearing: Freddies of Pinewood Lana jeans and #gwenstellamade vintage-inspired saddle shoes
Last weekend I wore my "new" saddle shoes for the very first time. I'm so excited about all the different ways I can incorporate it into my mid-century outfits in the future! Let me know if you make a pair for yourself too. I'd love to see your projects! x G
Thank you for your awesome post on my blog, Gwen! Be sure to tag and hashtag #gwenstellamade if you give this fabulous DIY a try! <3
For more Gwenstella Made,
check out her blog -
Thanks for reading, lovebugs!