DIY Sneakers for Spring

DIY Shoes For SpringKatie and I enjoyed playing around with paint to create some fun and unique DIY sneakers for Spring. We've got Spring fever pretty bad around here, so this project was the perfect way to prepare for warm weather and sunshine (even though we've still got snow on the ground!)

First up, here's Katie's simple geometric design…DIY Herringbone SneakersSupplies: plain canvas shoes, fabric marker, fabric paint, masking tape (optional) 1. For this design, begin by removing the shoe laces and masking off a line. Use your fabric marker to create the herringbone pattern. Continue across until all the white toe and back heel sections are covered. 2. Paint the middle section with black fabric paint. 3. After the paint is completely dry, insert your shoe laces and enjoy your newly styled shoes!Abstract painting sneakers!For my sneakers I knew I wanted to try a painted pattern. I've been seeing this trend all over from runways to retail, and it's one of my favorites in a long time! To create this pattern I simply painted spots, blocks and shapes all over the canvas part of my shoes with colorful fabric paint. Next, I added small dots and geometric patterns with black paint to finish. I chose to leave my laces off for an easy, comfy spring look. 

A note about care- These shoes are washable (machine or handwash) if you use fabric markers and paints and follow the instructions on each package completely. Each product will have different care specifications. 🙂Fun + unique DIY sneakers!We had so much fun creating these simple sneakers. I love that they are one of a kind, and I know I'll be wearing mine all season! 

Is this something you would like to try? If you do, tweet me a photo so I can see how yours turn out! XO. Elsie 

If you liked these, you should check out our Floral Boots DIY, Glitter Shoes, these restyled Vans Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, or DIY Masked + Printed Geometric Flats.

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  • This is SUCH a cute DIY! I just featured it along with a few other creative ideas in a post over on my blog. Thank you so much for coming up with it!

  • I have so many of these shoes, Now I know what to do with them 🙂

    ~ Jamie-Leigh

  • I have posted a link to this awesome DIY in my blog. People (or me, perhaps ;-P) really need to make this! It is so cute!

  • I’ve just read through your last 40+ posts and I am now obsessed!! Especially your recipes.

  • Your shoes just look great. It just so easy and look so different. I love that

  • I liked the idea so much that i ended up at the shop yesterday buying all the necessary stuff:)

  • Those look so similar to Gormans Fruit Salad dress! precious..

  • This is just such a good idea! I need to do this with my niece sometime, she would just go gaga over this idea!


  • This is so cool, I love the black and white pair, they look so professional!

  • Those are so darn cute. I love tennis shoes, and now I can customize them just the way I would like. What a great idea!!!!!

  • Great idea! I never think about painting shoes! Its a great way to customize them!


  • The parcel list shows it is send from China, oh my lida

  • These are super adorable and so easy! I love it when you realize that you can do so much more than buying something off the shelf 🙂

    xoxo, Em

  • I love this DIY! I was looking for a pair of colorful canvas shoes for Spring, but I never really thought of just making them myself. I’ll definitely be adding this to the weekend crafting list. Thank you for the inspiration!

    Emily from

  • I made some space inspired shoes awhile back (see here: )
    I think I’ll have to do another pair.

  • Loving them… great idea…. m planning to try it myself!!!


  • I saw these on instagram already but I am STILL FREAKING OUT!! i love them!!


  • My kids almost always these types of shoes so they can either paint, doodle, or decorate them in some way 🙂

  • What an awesome idea! So simple and quick to do, too! You’ll never mix your shoes up again! 🙂

  • This is definitely something I want to do over the summer. Where can I get cheap, white canvas shoes? I feel like the only ones I know of still cost around $50 dollars a pair?

  • Love the black and white shoes!

  • Those chevron shoes are so cute! I’ve been wanting some Kate Spade tennies, but maybe I’ll make a pair myself!


    Kristina does the Internets

  • absolutely love the idea!

  • I absolutely love the herringbone pattern shoes!!Lovely!
    And both sneakers look so individual!


  • i just saw canvas shoes for kids at wal-mart for 5bucks! i think this would be a fun project to do with my daughter, she is very artsy 😀

  • Fun, thanks for sharing! I would definitely do this for Spring!

  • Such a fun idea! Lovely way to get whatever design you want!

    Juliette Laura

  • I love that first pair so much! Such a creative idea that I can’t wait to try out. It could also be really cute with a pair of TOMS!

  • Do you have any tips for finding the plain canvass sneakers on the cheap?

  • I LOVE these! I’m so inspired to do this! 🙂 Do the shoes stay on pretty well even without laces?

  • Oh my goodness, so stinkin cute! Such a great idea. I have a girls day coming up that we needed a project for and I think this will do it! Thanks, you and Emma are so inspiring! Im officially a beautiful mess adict 🙂

  • Well, I’ve found my day off project. Something pretty to bust me out of the winter blahs!


  • I love these so much!! I’m definitely going to have to try the second one! It’s so fun and colorful!


  • This is awesome!! I need to do this, nothing better than one-of-a-kind clothes! Where did you get your canvas shoes from, i like those ones!


  • I was obsessed with doing this as a kid – especially after I had already scuffed up my perfectly white Keds! I’m pretty sure I used puffy paint…man, I sometimes miss that stuff. I put it on practically EVERYTHING!

  • Katies shoes are too cute! Love the idea!
    xo Heather

  • Super cute! Thanks for sharing yet another great idea!

    Lulu xx

  • Fun! I’m going to have to keep my eyes out for some good canvas shoes.

  • Guuuuh, I saw this on instagram and started scheming immediately how I can do this tonight. Thanks!

  • Wow! Brilliant and easy to do! Absolutely love it!

  • reminds me of drawing on the toes of my converse in high school. but way cuter!

  • I love it! I’ve been wanting to do this. I might now just have the courage to try.


  • Uh oh. Someone please stop me from drawing on all of my shoes!

  • They look great! I might try this idea, a great way to improve some boring shoes! xxx
    Amy |

  • My boyfriend painted me some pretty amazing shoes last year using acrylic paint mixed with fabric medium. Here’s a link to my blog post about them:

    I still love them, just wishing for the weather to warm up enough that I can wear them again!

  • I LOVE this idea- so cute! Pinned onto my to-do list!!

    xx Kait

    ChickadeeSays Bloglovin

  • Such a great idea and they look great!

  • these both look great!! is a fun way to make a different and unique shoes 😀

    <3 Val

  • Cuties!! Love the black and white…I think that same pattern would look awesome with a bright neon color too!

    xx Ashleigh

  • So cute! I’ll try!

    Mango+Miu Miu in

  • These are super cute! I may just have to try this! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  • After falling for the Mint converse yesterday..and then realising they don’t exactly fit with my NEED to save money, this has sparked some money saving ideas! Cheap pumps here I come!

  • These are just wonderful! Katie I really like yours because of the simplicity but Elsie yours are awesome too!

  • I am so doing this… today! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • i love this post because i just posted my new polka dot keds on my blog last night. i love the old school canvas shoes with a little extra something.


  • This would be a fun project for the kids too.

    Vintagehoneybee.blogspot. com

  • oh my goodness! I can remember doing this as a kid! Thanks for bringing this idea back! Now that my fine moto skills are better (and my eye for style) I’m sure sneaks will look less like a paint spill and more like a walking work of art!

  • That is perfect and I love to do something like that. So inspiring. Have a nice day/

  • OMG! This is adorable! What a creative way to add print to shoes! And any print you want, too! This is why I am in love with your blog! It really does inspire me to be creative and try new projects. Thanks!

  • Your shoes are really something!!! I just love them! What a fabulous idea!! =)

  • I LOVE the black & white ones!

    xxx Sabrina

  • They are looking awesome 🙂 Feeling like spring treats 🙂
    Noor @ Noor’s Place

  • Cool! 😀 That makes me want to do a DIY sneaker project. . . >:)

  • So cute ! I love the B&W ones…


  • These are soo cute! I love geometric designs and the black and white print is amazing! I also love the colorful pair – super cute. They TOTALLY remind me of Matisse’s work in a lot of ways – beautiful! Thanks for sharing! I need some new tennies and this tutorial is just what I needed. 🙂


  • They’re both super cute!!


  • What a great way to customize plain white tennis shoes! Again, this looks like a fun activity for the holiday weekend.

  • These are so cute! I wonder where I can find some inexpensive plain, white shoes now…

  • I can’t decide which pair I like more! I will be buying some shoes to decorate soon, I have to try this!

  • I love the black and white pair! It’s great because monochrome is a huge trend this spring 🙂

  • super!…I too would like to know where you bought the canvas shoes from?

  • Seriously, such a good idea! I just thrifted some plain shoes like this, I might have to try this out!

    You’re In Brookelynn

  • I love this idea and white tennies seem to get dirty so fast:) this would take care of that!

  • Great Idea! I may use this idea for a girl’s craft night!


  • LOVE these! I’ve done these for my girls, but never for me! Any ideas on how to make a strawberry stamp? Those strawberry vans from a few years ago are still in my mind!


  • i love how simple this project is!! both are so nice yet so different!

  • Love this project. I really like the result of the two pairs, but my favorite were the canvas painting ones! Their turn in something so unique i probably i should wear. It remind me of Lora Zombie (the painter) red shoes with paint. Thank you for sharing!! nina.

  • I remember buying canvas shoes with my gran when I was nine on march break and decorating them with glitter glue and neon paints.

    this makes me want to go back so badly.

    love this idea.

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