DIY clearance shoes, how to paint them for fall

how to paint on clearance shoes to make them look wow

I LOVE the frugal life. So when my friends tagged me in a post about our local Walmart putting select kids clothes and shoes on the $1 clearance rack I couldn’t get there fast enough! Thank you sweet friends btw! Boy did we find some good deals! Including these adorable little black shoes for my 3 year old daughter.

I had never painted on shoes before but I was up for the challenge. Such a perfect blank canvas and even if I mess them up they were only a DOLLAR so it’s totally ok and I wouldn’t feel one bit bad lol.

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DIY clearance shoes makeover. How to paint on canvas shoes.

I’m sure I didn’t use the right kind of paint {I used straight acrylic paint, not watered down} but that’s ok. My daughter won’t be wearing them very long, she’s three after all lol so she’ll outgrow them in no time.

Here’s what I used

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DIY painted shoes. From $1 rack to ADORABLE


How to paint on canvas shoes for fall

1. REMOVE THE LACES before you start painting so you don’t get paint all over them.

2. THEME unless you are just going to let the creative juices flow as you go along it is best if you have a plan prior to painting on your canvas shoes. I had an idea right before I started painting and I ended up changing it up as I went because I wasn’t totally loving the way it looked. I painted more on the back and sides and moved the bows and added the front dots after I filmed this tutorial. I LOVE the way they turned out and more importantly my toddler does too!


  • if you are painting on black shoes it is best to paint a base layer of white then once that’s dry paint the actual color you want. So on mine I wanted the backs orange, I painted them white first then after they dried I painted them orange. This will help your colors to not be dark and diluted.

  • use a variety of brush sizes to fit your painting needs

  • don’t use too much paint. Paint in thin layers and if doing more than one layer only paint over dry paint.

  • paint pens are your friends <3 ! I used paint pens to add the lines on the candy corn and pumpkin after painting them their main colors.

  • use both end of your paint brush. I used the non brush end of my brush to make the small dots on the front of the shoes. This was the perfect size for these cute little dots.

4. ADDING ACCENTS if you add any accents E6000 works great to have a long lasting hold. I’ll warn ya though, it doesn’t dry fast at all.

5. LACES I opted for a more untraditional lace for these shoes but you can keep the original laces in. I thought they would be too white for this pair so I traded them out for 2 thin pieces of ribbon in orange and black on each shoe. They actually hold up pretty well too! And this type of ribbon is really inexpensive so it wouldn’t cost much to replace if I need to.

Didn’t these clearance shoes turn out sooooo adorable?!!! I wasn’t sure how I’d like that they don’t match on the fronts but I actually do love it. It screams “I don’t have perfection issues” lol!!!

DIY how to paint Walmart clearance shoes to give them an upgrade

I hope you find this tutorial helpful for your shoe painting adventure! I’d love to see how yours turn out! Share a pic in the comments.

Check out the video tutorial below

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