Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Fashion Fix: Project Rhinestone!

A Couple of weeks ago,
I discovered, whilst surfing the fashion sites,
The above trainers.

I thought, 'hey they're pretty cool, not to everyone's taste, but I love a bit of tacky sparkle myself!'

Then I saw the price......
are you sitting down
( the answer is probably yes as you are on a computer!)
This particular pink pair
are a snap at just £250!!!


These trainers from StarSparkles by Pauline Clifford are all the rage in Hollywood
and worn by the likes of Paris Hilton...
who probably got them for free

Luckily their lowtops are a much more reasonably priced £130

OK so I know they are real Converse with real swarovski crystals,
but at that inflated price tag I'm surprised anyone has bought a pair

So I thought to myself, I could probably make a pair of my own,
and make them better!

So that is just what I did!

I started off by purchasing some Hi-top trainers on eBay
This particular pair are Kurt Geiger,
But I did go a bit crazy and buy two pairs by Converse as well, which I shall be transforming at a later date!

I read up on crystals and glue
I purchased some mid range crystals from eBay in bulk,
I thought about real swarovski, but they were pretty expensive, plus I wasn't sure how well this would work so didn't want to waste money

TBH I'm pretty impressed with the crystals I got, I didn't go the cheapest there were,
I made sure I got glass instead of plastic, as they shine better and stand up to the elements more

I also bought some super strong glue (E6000 Glue)
as recommended by one of the crystal sellers on eBay
Its industrial strength

Then I got Started
As these were sequined all over already
I decided to just do the toe-cap rather than a design up the side

I put the glue onto the toe cap, rather than onto the crystal
I then used a cocktail stick with double sided tape on the end to pick up the rhinestone and place it onto the glue

It took me a while to get into the rhythm, but after a bit i got me a little production line going

the glue dries super fast, so it took me a few times to learn to only put enough glue on for say 10 crystals at once, any more than that the glue has a film over it before you can get to it!

So here is the first shoe done!
I liked the way it turned out, I used 3 different sizes of crystals, so i could get better coverage and less gaps,
it also made it look less uniform so it wasn't in rows which I liked.

This is the finished Product!
I LOVE them soo tacky and bad that they are GOOD!

I'm now leaving them to dry for at least 72 hours,
as recommended by someone on eBay

and if they stay on well,
I shall be making many more pairs,
maybe even customise trainers for friends for Christmas

I'm also thinking of selling some on eBay!

Overall I spend about 3 hours on them
and spent £25 including the shoes and crystals
and I have stacks of crystals spare

so that's what I've been up to recently!
I shall show you if I do some more!


p.s, new picture!



  1. These are great! I want to do some for my little girl, but I am having trouble finding glass rhinestones on E-bay that are not Swarovski. I'm trying to stay away from those because they contain lead. Would you remember the seller you bought yours from?
    Thanks - Kelly

  2. Great shoes-looks like you did a really good job!I'm interested in this project for the same reason as the previous poster-I too have a little girl who loves sparkly things! My question is this-I know that for this project you used crystals in assorted sizes-what sizes do you recommend-which are too big or too tiny? I am interested in making both a pair with different sized crystals and a pair with uniform sized crystals in even rows, but I need to get an idea of approximately how many I would need for a toddler's size 8 shoe and what sizes of crystals would be best. What is your advice? Best wishes, Karen

  3. argh im so annoyed,
    I just wrote you two the longest reply, and it got rid of it!

    Oh well

    Hi kelly & Karen

    basically I bought Hotfix Rhinestones from ebay. they are called hotfix because they have dry glue on the back,and you are supposed to fix them on by heating them up. However I used normal E600 glue to stick them on as their glue and the heat doesnt work on rubber! They look like normal crystals though nobody could tell any difference.

    The reason i used hotfix was because you can buy them in bulk, theere are loads of different ones on ebay, they are glass, and they are super cheap!

    so yeah search 'hotfix rhinestones' on ebay. I started by buying loads of all different kinds in a kit, so I could see which styles and sizes looked best. I would reccomend using 2 or 3 different sizes in the same colour, it makes them fit together better than just one size.

    as they are for kids shoes I would go for 4mm and under (they call 4mm ss16 I think!) the most important thing is the glue though, deffo use E600 glue, its a bit smelly but super good, i have made 3 or 4 pairs of these now and not 1 rhinestone has come off!

    hope I've helped,
    If you need anything else let me know!

    and sorry I took so long to reply kelly!


  4. I searched for 45 min. trying to find a site that would help me make these shoes possible. I want to thank you so much for posting this!! I cant wait to make like 14 pairs for myself!! Yours look great!!


  5. Hello!!
    What A incredible job... you are fantastic!!!
    I want to decorate the converse for my Daugther .. she is going to be 15 years old in 20 days! and she loves converses!!
    My question is ... do I have to use the glue in the fabric or only in the rubber?

  6. hey sandy

    I bought converse already with sequins on,
    I didnt glue any rhinestones to the fabric, but If i was going to I wouldnt use e600 glue, that glue is only good for rubber

    To put rhinestones onto the fabric part, I would use hot fix rhinestones (they come with glue on the back, that when you heat up it sticks to fabric) and a heat tool or heat wand

    Hope I helped


  7. Hi there,

    Do you know where i could but the high tops with the sequins already on them?

    Thanks xx

  8. Use Gem-tac for fabric. That's what most rhinestone people use. E-6000 is great for everything else. If you ever do something like flip flops don't buy cheap vinyl ones from China. Vinyl leaks oils through it's life and that oil will eventually weaken the bond. Rubber flip flops work fine but rough up the straps with a green scrubbie before rhinestoning. Might want to rough up the rubber tips of converse too just for some extra adhering power.

    Beautiful job!

  9. That one was very detailed. Impressive! I love the result very elegant and creative.

    Rhaine Bryt