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Paint Couture…Gel Printing Rainbow Sneakers

Using a gel plate and a stencil to make rainbow sneakers tutorial by Carolyn DubePaint Couture…fun to make and fun to wear!  Turns out finding a rainbow colored pair of shoes isn’t as easy as you might think so I decided to make some rainbow shoes!  Clearly, I did not cobble them myself but simply painted a cheap pair of canvas sneakers.

Even though you don’t see triangles all over the shoes, the triangle petite plate from Gel Press was used for the entire shoe, including stenciling the stars using the new Stars Inspired by Matisse stencil.  You can see the whole process in the video including how I managed to keep the white rubber so white (hint baby wipes).

Watch Gel printing and stenciling sneakers on YouTube.

Want to win the stencils used in this video?  One lucky reader will win all 7 of my new stencils.  Leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win.  Want more chances?  Leave a comment on each of the giveaway posts (Wednesday’s, Thursdays, Saturday’s and today’s posts!) See all the details at the end of this post.

What types of paint do I use to paint shoes?  Any acrylic paints that I had in arm’s reach.  After all, any time I spill paint on my clothes it is hard to get it out.  I could have used fabric paints but these are cheap shoes that probably couldn’t stand going through the washing machine too much anyway, so it being washable over the long haul isn’t an issue to me.

Using a gel plate and a stencil to make rainbow sneakers tutorial by Carolyn Dube

Why use a gel plate instead of a brush to apply the paint?  The slight variations and color minglings from a dirty plate are tough for me to duplicate with a paint brush.

Using a gel plate and a stencil to make rainbow sneakers tutorial by Carolyn Dube

The stars from my Stars Inspired by Matisse stencil were added using the gel plate.  Why that instead of a cosmetic sponge?  The plate was right next to me and it also allowed for the paint minglings of the dirty plate to happen on the stars too.

Paint Couture, not something you’ll see at Fashion Week in NYC but one of the side benefits of wearing shoes like this is that every time you wear them, you are reminded of the fun that was had making them!

Using a gel plate and a stencil to make rainbow sneakers tutorial by Carolyn Dube

Giveaway Details

Want to win the stencils used in this post?  One lucky reader will win all 7 of my new stencils.  Leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win.  Want more chances?  Leave a comment on each of the giveaway posts (Wednesday’s, Thursdays, Saturday’s and today’s posts!) See all the details at the end of this post.

I want everyone to have a chance to win, so International folks are eligible too!  Of course, if you win and you’ve already ordered any of the new stencils, you can pick any of my other 50+ stencils at StencilGirl. Giveaway ends on Jan. 31st at 11:59 pm. EST. Winner will be announced the following day on the blog.

Want more chances to win?  Bonus entries for sharing any this post on  Facebook, or Pinterest, or Instagram! How will I know you did it? Just come back and leave a comment telling me where you shared it.  Random.org will be picking a winner from the 4 blog posts on Jan. 31st at 11:59 pm. EST. Winner will be announced on the blog the next day.

Here are the supplies I used. Some of these links are affiliate links which means I get a small percentage. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and it helps keep the free tutorials coming!

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  • Amanda Walden January 30, 2017, 12:38 pm

    I love this idea! You definitely made a FUN pair of shoes! Bravo!

  • Amy Hodgson-Smith January 30, 2017, 2:14 pm

    Not haute couture?!?! I bet Carrie Bradshaw would love to own a pair of these! I have to make a pair for myself!

  • Stephanie January 30, 2017, 2:23 pm

    Yum! Great technique with your new stencil.

  • gabriele January 30, 2017, 2:47 pm

    I love the uniqueness of your sneakers! I should do that to one of my white pairs…of course I would have to wear them to work-I would definitely cause a stir.

  • Sabrina January 30, 2017, 3:20 pm

    Fantastic look! I need to try this on some of my more orthopedic shoes which are just not the look I want to sport.

  • LynneP January 30, 2017, 3:34 pm

    What FUN shoes!!! Great giveaway, thanks!

  • Jean Marmo January 30, 2017, 4:29 pm

    This is the most fun!!! We have a new granddaughter arriving in April. I could fix up her shoes!!!

  • Nanci January 30, 2017, 5:07 pm

    I want to try this on an old pair of jeans! They’re already paint splotched, so no worries!??

  • Melinda D. January 30, 2017, 5:15 pm

    Off to find a pair of white tennies — I can’t wait to have a go at it.

  • Gayle January 30, 2017, 5:33 pm

    A bathroom, shoes, what’s next? Love all these projects!

  • Safia Button January 30, 2017, 5:48 pm

    I just love this stencil – so versatile! And great job on the shoes – a really fun idea and really easy to do with one of those mini gel press shapes

  • Gilda (McStamper) January 30, 2017, 7:55 pm

    Something I have been wanting to try – thanks so much for the information. Thanks for a chance to win.

  • Sybil Grieco January 30, 2017, 9:33 pm

    What a neat idea! I really like the gelli plate idea. Your stencils look great on the sneaker.

  • Elizabeth Motyka January 30, 2017, 10:27 pm

    So many fun ways to use stencils. I love it!

  • Pam January 31, 2017, 2:57 am

    I can’t wait to get busy on my summer playful canvas shoes. What a fun way to add humor to fun bright colors!

  • Arianna Barbara January 31, 2017, 3:33 am

    Oh my goodness!!! I love these shoes!!! I’ve never thought to use stencils for this kind of DIY project!!! Absolutely stunning!!!

  • Arianna Barbara January 31, 2017, 3:38 am

    I’ve just shared your post on Facebook as Arianna Barbara

    On Pinterest as Arianna Barbara

    On Instagram as raggiodiluc3

  • Kerry Williamson January 31, 2017, 8:19 am

    LOVE these. I am thinking also that gel stamps could be used to stamp nice messages on them, especially if you wanted to do a pair of these for a dear friend

  • Mary W January 31, 2017, 8:48 am

    My granddaughter is going to love her time with Granny this week! What a great project to share with her and get matching shoes, too!

  • Glenda Lovchik January 31, 2017, 9:31 am

    I just got some of those mini presses. Had not thought of using them on those type of surfaces. What fun. I bet my granddaughters would love to help. Thanks so much for your inspirational projects.

  • Elizabeth Kaplan January 31, 2017, 10:16 am

    Last time you used a brush, right?? This is even AWESOMER !!! ❤

  • Kathleen f January 31, 2017, 10:20 am

    Now I want to do this!!! Thank you, as always, for getting me into the studio to play.

  • Virginia Michelini January 31, 2017, 10:38 am

    Darling shoes. I have some Keds waiting on me now. Truly need the stencils and triangle Gel plate. Thanks

  • Laura M January 31, 2017, 11:28 am

    I’m making a pair, too!

  • Becky in Florida January 31, 2017, 11:39 am

    I can’t wait to try this. Those sneakers are soooooo cool.

  • DeBorah Beatty January 31, 2017, 1:45 pm

    Love the tennis! This way they can be my design a day unique instead of mass produced. I can have a pair for every outfit!

  • Dottie Lou Crisp January 31, 2017, 2:50 pm

    Love love love your work!! xoxoxo

  • Dottie Lou Crisp January 31, 2017, 2:53 pm

    I’m going to the thrift store tomorrow to find some shoes to play with!! xoxo

  • Kristiina January 31, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Love how you made these shoes FUN!

  • Gill K January 31, 2017, 5:45 pm

    What fun! This is so effective & not too tricky to try. Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Laura Landau January 31, 2017, 8:14 pm

    That’s awesome. I painted some shoes for a concert once. I didn’t have good paint so I had to use medium… it was.. eh. Nice to know I can just use acrylic paint without it.

  • jodi January 31, 2017, 11:32 pm

    This looks like so much fun! You are the queen of play.

  • Kristen February 1, 2017, 12:28 am

    You always come up with the best art projects!! What a great idea this is and I can’t wait to give it a try!

  • hi
    it is so beautiful! 🙂

  • Pat Healey February 1, 2017, 1:09 pm

    Love your shoes – it’s a great idea and one I will definitely try.

  • Sandra McGuire February 2, 2017, 1:55 am

    Haha what a brilliant idea. Love them

  • SunnyB February 3, 2017, 5:26 pm

    What a great idea, Carolyn! It’s a useful piece of art (one of my favorite things) AND a conversation starter. And that stencil is to die for.

  • Janice Weiser February 3, 2017, 5:32 pm

    Cute! That stencil is awesome. Thanks Carolyn!

  • Mary MacIlvain February 4, 2017, 7:14 am

    The painted sneakers are absolutely delightful! Thank you for sharing this great video of the process. You could do this on a plain tote bag or other small item too!

  • Jane Christensen February 5, 2017, 11:36 pm

    WOw! could I do the same thing on leather or nubuck or similar? the only shoes i wear anymore are Birkenstock and I saw some sandals in white Birko Flor® which is made of soft acrylic and polyamide felt fibres with a durable smooth leather-like finish.