DIY GOLD SHOES
Please enjoy the DIY part, of the "Eco-Express Yourself" series.
In short, same girl, old stuff, new style.
This post is about how I turned my outdated brown leather shoes, into fabulous gold shoes.
In this part of the series, I will go into the value of repurposing your belongings and breathe new life into things you no longer use. If you haven't read any of the previous post's explaining the purpose of the "Eco-Express yourself, Recycle fashion" series, click right here, or scroll down for a quick repeat after the photos.
What I'm wearing.
Home altered gold, inherited leather shoes. See below for before photo and information about the process.
The black coat is about 2 years old.
The black pants are about 1 years old.
The black top is about 2 years old.
I'm a big fan of the metallic trend, and gold shoes has been on the top of my shopping list for quite a while. Finding shoes that are both ethical and comfortable is hard enough without throwing unusual colors into the mix. So, after some years and still no luck in my search for some cool and comfy gold shoes, I realized that I actually had a pair of brown leather shoes in a similar style just taking up space in my closet. The shoes were in good shape, as they had hardly ever been used. I had in fact inherited them from a friend of mine that no longer used them, just to not use them myself either. After three years without not even using them once, I decided it was time to turn the shoes I already owned into the shoes I wanted.
First, I removed the shoe laces and cleaned the leather/shoes, to prepare for painting. I used gold leather paint, a small paint brush, and a sponge to apply the paint. I used the brush inside the gold paint bottle to paint the first layers. Then I used the sponge for the last layer, to make sure it looked smooth and even. I had to go over it about three times before it looked the way I wanted it to and the original color was properly covered up. Then, I painted the shoe laces gold too.
All it took was an evening (because it needed to dry between the layers) and a 1 oz bottle of gold leather paint, which lasted for three layers, the shoe laces, and then some. I'm so in love with these shoes right now. They went from dull, to favourite shoes category with such a small quick fix. The best part is that I got the shoes I wanted, without having to actually buy new shoes. The only drawback, was that it was really difficult to not get any paint on the shoe sole. However, you don't really notice unless you look closely.
Leather is one of the most eco-unfriendly pieces of material you can produce, between the extreme water consumption and the chemicals used. So, If you have the option to diy fix your outdated or broken leather pieces, the planet would be thankful for it.
THE GOLDEN WARDROBE RULES
The trick is to think of your closet as a collection, and only shop for what's missing. Never just buy something because it's pretty or cool. Take notice of what you really need when roaming through your clothes getting ready, and make a list. This is a good way of preventing that impulse shopping, based on your feelings for that random shiny dress you just got a fleeting crush on (that you'll never get to wear). The key is to build a wardrobe where you can find an outfit for any occasion, without having to go shopping. Even if it's for work, a birthday party, camping, or a wedding. Too many of us have the "I have a hundred party tops, and yet I have nothing to wear" kind of closets. Or, the "I only have work clothes, and nothing fancy". It's all about finding that right balance.
Instead, spare the environment the pollution, and save money on buying long lasting quality items. This way, you can rather spend your money on replacing basics (Also, more left for the occasional splurge on fashion fabs).
(Source: The photos are mine, except the before photo of the jacket in the before photos. That came from the seller. Information about the environment is from "The True Cost Movie" and you can see more at https://truecostmovie.com/learn-more/environmental-impact/.)
SAYA designs, is an eco-friendly brand that turn waste material into sustainable, ethical, and beautiful hairpins.
The SAYA brand is based on the concept of a circular economy, and create beautifully handcrafted hair sticks from root wood, salvaged from abandoned commercial plantations in Indonesia.
In order to not add to the huge logging industry across the world, they use waste material left behind by loggers. For each purchase, they plant up to ten endangered tree species back into the rainforests. Handmade by artisans in Bali, and backed by a passionate commitment to the environment, these are hair sticks on a mission.
The Indonesia’s rainforest is one of the most biologically diverse forests in the world, containing ten percent of known plant species, twelve percent of all known mammal species and seventeen percent of all known bird species. Yet it also has one of the highest deforestation rates in the world, and just under half of the country’s original forest cover now remains. Since the 1960s it has been consistently destroyed to make room for commodities such as pulp, paper, plywood, and palm oil. If it keeps going, there won’t be any of it left.
Wood is only a renewable and eco-friendly material if it is consciously sourced. Tropical hardwoods in particular grow very slowly and in low densities, and regenerate poorly after logging. These species are often taken from forests in non-sustainable numbers, and illegal ways. Planting trees to replenish the rainforest, is one of the best ways to fight climate change-related problems like soil erosion, environmental degradation, increasing average temperatures, low rainfall, and increasing CO2 emissions. SAYA partners with the organisation GAIA, which is based in Central Java and works all across Indonesia, supplying seeds, and training farmers and communities to support their ecosystems. They also work closely with large organizations such as the FFI, and speak on a government level to make sure forestry issues are heard.
A circular economy, is about minimising the negative impacts of production on the environment. It aims to build economic, natural and social capital, not deplete them. We need to change the way we consume. Most of the world runs on a “take, make and dispose” industrial model, where 85% of everything we consume ends up in a landfill. It’s not enough just to recycle what we can, we have to reimagine our entire economy.
To learn more or shop, go to
I got the hair pin for free, however I would never promote anything I don't belive in on IdealistStyle.com. I was not paid to promote this. I chose to feature this brand on my page, because it's a great cause and I want to promote ethical brands.
ETHICAL AND PERSONALIZED STYLE, FOR A "GOOD FOR YOU" WARDROBE.
Idealist style is a website and "slow blog" dedicated to ethical fashion and personalized style, including tips on how to find your very own "slow fashion" style by using color analysis, the body types system, and other slow fashion tips.»