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I knew I had to have these plaid platform Vans the first time I saw them. My only question was, what design am I going to paint on them? Ice skates were the logical choice after considering several other options. Every December we go ice skating as a family on a homeschool field trip with my church. We usually eat with friends and go to the mall after the skating session is over. Hopefully, wearing the Painted Ice Skate Vans will remind me of those fun times for many years to come.
Materials for Painted Ice Skate Vans:
- Plaid Platform Vans
- Apple Barrel paints-20403 White, 20404E Black, 2620E Pewter, 21481E Key West, 2605E Crimson, 21467E Tuscan Red, 20429E Christmas Green, 20713E Spring Green
- Folk Art Metallic 662E Sterling Silver
- DecoArt Craft Twinkle- Crystal
- brushes- 5/8″ angle, 1/4″ flat, liner
- Scotchgard Fabric Protector Spray
- textile medium
- free printable ice skate pattern from Pixabay.com
- white laundry marker/grease pencil
- printable holly berry pattern- northpolechristmas.com
Prepping the Surface
Prepping the surface for a canvas/cloth shoe is simple. First, stuff paper into the toe portion for an even painting surface. Next, make sure you blend each paint color with a few drops of textile medium as you paint. Why use textile medium?
Textile/fabric medium controls color bleeding. Lowers viscosity of heavier body paints, giving increased flow. Gives a consistently even, smooth application. Improves wet-on-wet blending. Extends your color further without affecting acrylic stability. Doesn’t require heat setting.
Decreased stiffness of the painted fabric is another benefit not listed above.
Transferring the Pattern
White graphite transfer paper and chalk transfer did not work very well for me in this case. The solution was my mother’s 1970 white grease pencil. I inherited her sewing stuff when she died 15 years ago and use her notions frequently. There was only a little piece of that grease pencil left, but it worked fabulously. Simply trace around the cut out ice skate pattern with your grease pencil. I traced one skate facing left and one facing right.
Paint the skate with several coats of White with the 5/8″ angle brush. Feel free to use a blow dryer to hurry things along.
Dip the front half of the 1/4″ flat brush into Pewter and the back half into White. Paint around the inside edge of the ice skate, blending as you go.
Use the end of the paint brush to make 8 Black lace holes. Paint the laces with Pewter and the liner brush.
Paint the heel and sole Black with the 1/4″ flat brush. Paint your initials and the last two digits of the year onto the skate of one shoe with Black and the liner brush. Paint the blade with a layer of Pewter, then Sterling Silver. Use the same brush to swish in some snow with White.
Highlight the heel and paint around the blade with White and the liner brush. Then, go back and paint around the blade with Black and the liner brush. These steps were necessary in this case to prevent the skate heel and blade from blending into the dark, busy background of the shoe.
Use the small round brush to paint Christmas Green, Spring Green, and White greenery sprigs.
Make three holly berries with Crimson and the end of your brush. Shade with Tuscan Red and highlight with White. Use the liner brush for the last two steps. Add a few holly leaves with Christmas Green, Spring Green, and White. I didn’t cut out and trace the holly pattern onto the skate, but I did use it for reference as I painted the holly.
Blend some Key West into the snow. Once it dries add some sparkle with the Crystal Craft Twinkle. Use the 5/8″ angle for both steps.
When everything is nice and dry, take the Vans outside and spray them with a coat or two of Scotchgard Fabric Protector Spray. if anything gets spilled on your shoes, it will bead up and become easily absorbed with a paper towel.
You’re all done! I hope you enjoyed my Painted Ice Skate Vans tuorial!
Merry Christmas Season,
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