DIY // Neon Brogues

April 17, 2012

We’re in Spring Cleaning mode here at Style & Pepper Headquarters, and going through our closets with a fine-toothed comb and a discerning eye is always first on the list.  I’ve noticed that when I go through my wardrobe each season, I always come away with a handful of pieces that I’ve grown a bit tired of, but are still in great shape and worthy of a second chance.

This DIY was the perfect little pick-me-up for making a plain(ish) pair of brogues a little brighter, and I think most things are better when they’re brighter, don’t you

Step One:  Decide on the pair of shoes you want to spice up, and make sure that the edge of the sole is in fairly good shape and will look great once it’s put in the spotlight.  It’s also a good idea to wipe the whole shoe down with a damp cloth at this point, in order to help the paint to stick.

Step Two:  Tape off the areas that you don’t want the paint to land.  I was much less careful when taping off the bottom of the sole, because not very many people see the bottom of my shoes, but I tried to be much more precise on the sides.

Step Three:  Start by painting 2-3 thin coats of white acrylic paint, letting each coat dry completely before adding another.  Once you have an opaque base to work with, add a bright neon or saturated jewel-tone using the same technique of letting it fully dry between thin coats.  This electric lemon-y yellow that I used was pretty thin, so I used about four coats, but you’ll probably just have to eye it depending on the look you’re going for.  Once the paint was completely dry, I added a layer of my favorite clear nail polish to seal the whole thing off, and then let it harden overnight.

My brogues were ready to be packed for our trip to California the very next morning, and I loved taking something that was originally a more classic style and making them the perfect unexpected touch of prep for my otherwise beach-y ensembles.  Check out the laid-back look I styled them up with here

Expect to see these babies in a much more frequent rotation for the summer, and I’m already thinking of some other fun ways I can style them up for running around NYC.  Do you have any pieces in your wardrobe that you’re planning on giving new life to for a new season?  I’d love to hear how others are spicing up their Spring/Summer wardrobes and if you’s like to share photos of your new creations, I’ll post them over on the Style & Pepper Facebook page!

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  • Reply jennifer April 17, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    This is fantastic! Definitely adding to my DIY list

  • Reply Grace - Stripes and Sequins April 17, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    Love these, Jessie!!

  • Reply Natasha Fatah April 17, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Great idea Jesse!

    ~Natasha Fatah~
    ~Natasha Fatah~

  • Reply allie April 17, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    LOVE the neon! Perfect pop of color! Where did you get those shoes? I’m inspired!

    Allie at

    • Reply Jessie @ Style and Pepper April 24, 2012 at 3:32 am

      Hi Allie – Thanks! The shoes are originally from Aldo, but it’s been a while so not sure that they’d still have anything similar.

  • Reply Julie D. April 17, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    I saw these shoes in your earlier post & had no idea you did them yourself. They look amazing with the neon soles.

    I’ve been eyeing some similar Cole Haan shoes, but I think I might just do it myself with an existing pair now. Thanks for the DIY post!

  • Reply Krizia April 17, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    This is such a clever DIY. Thank you so much for trying and sharing!

  • Reply Gillie April 17, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    Those are amazing, a really unique DIY. I would have never thought of that but now I’m dying to try it out!

    xo Gillie

  • Reply PurplesPrettier April 18, 2012 at 1:16 am

    AHH you beat me to it! I totally wanted to do this with my roommate’s old shoes… but she wouldn’t give them to me. Someday.

  • Reply Sallytangle April 18, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    I love it!!!! Esp after admiring your neon brogue-y shoes on your last post……i am def going to give that a go! xx

  • Reply Helena April 23, 2012 at 8:45 am

    Hi! Did you get these shoes from ALDO? Because I have the brogues version with laces in the same color scheme, i love them! :)
    just diy´ed some 3D Daisy Socks (perfect paired with brogues!)

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