DIY Ombre Watercolor Shoes


I’ve been more and more interested in watercolor paints lately. I love how fresh they look, and how they can deliver so much color impact without ever feeling heavy. It’s so dreamy! I wanted to get painting on a different type of canvas, so I picked up some plain white kicks and made myself some DIY ombre watercolor shoes. Let’s make ’em!


  • plain white canvas sneakers
  • watercolor paints
  • small paintbrushes
  • water
  • paper towels

Make Time: 30 minutes

Start by removing the laces from your shoes. I liked mine that way, so I ended up leaving them off! At the toe, paint on clean, clear water. This will help to move the paint around on the shoe canvas.


Mix up your color. Use a fair amount of paint and water to mix together enough to cover both toes; you don’t want to run out and have to try to recreate the color. Make a little puddle of your chosen shade.


Gently, start applying paint to the wet areas on your shoe. You’ll quickly get a feel for how the shoe sucks up color. If the color gets too saturated or sticky on a certain spot, add more water and try to move it around a bit.


After you have your first color, paint a little more clear, clean water at the edge and apply the next color. Always apply more water if the colors are having trouble blending into an ombre effect.




Continue until you’re happy! I just wanted to do the toes, and I love the effect. It’s a perfect pop of color against the white background. Let the shoes dry thoroughly (I would give them a few days), and be careful where you wear them — a rainstorm might not be the place for these beauties. Have fun! xoxo



  1. Lucy on said:

    So incredibly cute – I just adore these! And a super easy project to do – they would even make a great gift. Awesome DIY idea.

  2. Margeaux on said:

    Love love love. I’ve been wanting to try this out but haven’t picked up the sneaks yet. I rally should. A fresh pair of summer shoes is a must.

  3. Corina on said:

    This is simply amazing!
    Great inspiration and something i’ll definitely use 🙂

  4. Emily B on said:

    Awesome DIY! I wonder if a water-proofing shoe spray would do the trick to make these a little more resilient? I’ll have to give it a try!


  5. Kory on said:

    Those are so neat! What a cool wait to dress up some plain shoes! 🙂

  6. These are amazing, Chels! I love the colors you used. I’ve also been obsessed with watercolors lately, they’re just so darn pretty!

  7. elaine costa on said:

    Such a fresh, clean look, love the colors!

  8. shoko on said:

    oh chelsito, these are just the cutest.

  9. Brittni on said:

    Love this DIY Chelsea! Such a pretty way to update a pair of sneakers.

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  11. kim on said:

    I love this!

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  13. shivraj on said:

    wr did u get the shoes frm.
    i want thm.
    i wan na paint .
    let me no

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  16. Tonyah on said:

    Does it wear off eventually?

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