My second adventure with Steve Madden shoes (see my previous post about his hightops) went to the other end of the spectrum: I started with a pair of elegant and sexy suede heels in a loden green.
Now, I know better than to paint suede. A coat of leather paint will adhere just fine, but the shoe will lose its lovely soft texture and dappled look. So the shoe was going to stay green. That's when I remembered the chunky fluorite nuggets I had bought at a bead show last summer. They looked like little rocks with holes through the middle. I thought their rough texture would look wonderful against the suede.
But I wanted something to use with them as a centerpiece. Again, I was hunting for a real contrast. I decided on 20mm amethyst beads and used silver-plated beading wire to string them on. Wire-wrapped loops on the ends gave me something to stitch them down with.
I really liked how that came out, but with shoes, you always need to add something more, something beyond what you originally conceived. That's when the design really takes off. I looked at the shoes with their great "rock candy" stitched on and thought, What if the heels were an amethyst color too?
So I went to my favorite source for suede dye, www.turtlefeathers.net, and ordered a bottle of Angelus brand suede dye for $3.50. Two coats later, the heels of these "new and improved" Steve Maddens were a wonderful deep purple. I named them Rock Candy Heels.
Note: I made a couple extra sets of the Rock Candy embellishments and they are available in my webstore, along with some in different colors. Click here.