Thursday, March 1, 2012

I DIY FOR: Flatform Sneakers

It's all about signature sneakers this spring. From edgy embellished high-tops, sporty colorblocked wedges to pretty printed lo-tops there is a pair to match every personality but why not take the sneaker trend to the next level by making your own one of a kind flatform sneakers. This DIY is the perfect opportunity to take old canvas sneakers and give them new life or kick up some cheap but boring white lo-tops that can be purchased at most big box stores (Target, Walmart, etc...). I created a happy flower power design that was inspired by 70s and 90s styles plus some of my favorite current brands. The look is bold, unique and fun making it a perfect pick for music festivals or a springtime girl's day out. But remember when it comes to designing/decorating these flatform sneakers the sky is the limit. Take inspiration from your favortie things and bring them to life in a high style, low price sneaker.

*UPDATE: If you would rather buy than diy, I'm now selling made-to-order flatform sneakers on Etsy."

My inspiration came from Dimepiece Sesigns flower embellished platform, Jeffrey Campbell's Sporty Hi in Happy Face and Jeremy Scott's FW12 collection.


1 - Pair of Canvas Sneakers
4 - Pairs of Inexpensive Flip Flops
1 - Large Tube of E6000 Permanent Glue
6 - Clamps or Rubber Bands
Acrylic Paints
Clear Spray Sealer
Small Fake Daisies
Glue Gun

1) Paint Your Sneakers

~ First I made a stencil out of a happy face I had found online and printed and placed them with tape in desired locations with tape. This will help keep some of the darker colors from bleeding through the happy face later on.

~ Splatter paint the shoes with several bright colors. This technique can be achieved by flicking a paintbrush or blowing paint from a straw. Make sure to do this step outside or in a well covered area since the paint will splatter everywhere (trust me!).

~ Let the splatter coat dry.

~ Remove the happy faces and use one of the stencils as a template. Trace the circle with a pencil and paint the shape with two to three coats of yellow paint.

~ When the yellow circles have dried outline and create eyes and a smile with a black permanent marker.

~ The next day seal the paint with a clear spray coat. Repeat this step three times.

~ Let dry 24-48 hours.

2) Trim Your Flip Flops

~ First trim off  and remove the straps of all four sneakers. You will want to glue the plastic "plugs" into the bottom flip flop so that you don't have holes at the bottom of your shoes.

~ Trace the outline of your shoe onto the flip flop with a pen.

~ Trim the flip flop.

~ Place your sneaker back on the trimmed flip flop to make sure the length and width are perfect. Do the above steps for all four flip flops for each sneaker.

3) Glue Your Flip Flops

~ Lightly sand each flip flop.

~ Apply your E6000 glue to the upper and lower side of each flip flop and allow to cure for two minutes. Then place together. Continue this process until your new sneaker sole is formed.

~ In order to make sure the sole dries properly you can clamp them between two pieces of scrap wood. If you do not have any clamps you can use rubber bands or hair ties to hold the flip flops together.

~ Let dry for 24 hours.

4) Glue Sneakers to Flip Flop Soles

~ Sand the sneaker and flip flop sole and apply as directed in Step 4.

~ Allow to dry with clamps, rubber bands or hair ties and place napkins/paper towels over the paint to make sure the design isn't scratched during this process.

~ Allow to dry for 36-48 hours.

5) Decorate Your Sole

~ Trim the stems off of the fake flowers so that they are flat and will easily glue onto your sneaker's sole.

~ Use E6000 glue to attach the flowers.

~ For touch ups and finishing touches use a hot glue gun.

~ Allow to completely dry before wearing.

~ You can also decorate your sneakers with just about anything: Decorative Duct Tape, Plastic Gems, Mini Seashells, Paint, etc...

6) Admire Your Work

~ The finished sneaker is a fun 3" flatform sneaker that will add a lift to your style all summer long.

xoxo ~ Lisa + 312style

images via,, and


  1. Genius!
    So excited to try this :)

    1. Have fun making them! I would love to see them when you're finished! :)

  2. The Idea is amazing but I think the flowers are too...Ummm...three-dimensional?
    Something simpler like decoupage would have been wonderful on those cute sneakers.