What You Will Need:
- Pair of stacks (or whatever shoes you are going to paint, preferably not patent leather) You can buy stacks from our site at littleblackdiamond.com
- Spray paint of the colors you want for your gradient
- Tarp, cardboard box, or something else to place underneath while spraying
What Could Be Helpful:
- Spray Grip Attachable Nozzle
- Painters Tape
- Tissue Paper or newspaper
- Something to stuff shoe with so it will dry standing up
We used patent leather Stacks because that was what we had on hand, but I strongly recommend not using patent because the paint will crack and flake off. Also, this tutorial is not just limited to Stacks, but any shoe you wish!
The first step is optional and just depends on personal preference. You can use painters tape to tape off the zipper and/or sole of the shoe (any part you don’t want painted). I started out taping off the whole zipper but later decided to only tape the zipper head and not the zipper tape.
Second, put down your tarp or cardboard outside or in a well ventilated area to avoid hazardous fumes and getting spray paint permanently on the ground.
Next, we start spraying! I used a cheap Spray Grip I got at Walmart. The perk to this is that you aren't pressing down with your finger, but shooting the paint out like a gun. Total preference.
Start spraying with the lightest color (yellow), and spray generously larger than the area that you want yellow just to give you some leeway while blending. I suggest you calibrate your spraying before starting onto the cardboard or tarp. Test out distances and corresponding amounts of spray. When you are spraying, you want to get a solid color but you also want to attempt not to get drips. I suggest filling the area with color no matter how opaque you get it first, and then going back in after letting it sit for a couple seconds and making the color more solid (again, to try to avoid drips).
After yellow, I sprayed all the base colors (and then after going in with the blending colors that make the gradient). I covered the yellow section with tissue paper to make sure I didn't get other colors on it, and then I sprayed the red on the front where the toe is, and the blue towards the top.
Next, I went in with the blending colors to make the gradient. This included, laying down orange to blend red into yellow, laying down green to blend yellow into blue, and then laying down purple at the top. This step is the most nerve racking, but stay calm about it. It will probably not come out exactly how you envision, so just try not to obsess too much. If it looks pretty good, don't touch it (because you will probably ruin it)! Also if you accidentally deplete too much of a section while blending (like my yellow section became pretty small) you can always go back in and re-spray that color.
When you are done, stuff these babies so they have the least amount of cracks while drying. I could not find a shade of purple I liked at the store so I mixed it myself by spraying pink and blue onto the cardboard, and quickly mixing them and applying with a paint brush until I was happy with it.
TADA! I LOVE how these turned out. Other variations could include stencils, taping off patterns, or even words/logos. I would LOVE to see what creations you guys come up with :)