DA few weeks ago, Margot began telling you about creating faux toe caps. She talked briefly about creating a patent-leather look for shoes and bags, and I was entrusted with the task of finishing that thought in the next post. I, as usual, was distracted by something shiny, in this case – a milestone on Facebook, and I gave you 7 lists of 7 instead.

Well, your wait is finally over… I bring you the trick for "making" your own patent leather!

Margot picked up a totally smoking pair of red and leopard patent leather heels for us to play with. They are almost perfect on their own… ALMOST! 

Stages of patent

We decided it would be a perfect pair on which we test out a technique for creating a patent finish. I prepped then painted the back and heel of the shoe with a MATTE Neopaque Black, using two coats. Once they were dry to the touch, I applied a coat of Sassy Feet! Acrylic Sealer and allowed it to dry. Then I applied another coat of sealer… Then another… Three coats in all. That's it. The painted finish is as glossy as the original shoe.

There's only one trick to it. It works best on matte colors. When applied over a Metallic or Pearescent it doesn't add much. Those colors already have their own luminous quality that isn't enhanced by the glossy finish.


Both pairs above (Metallic Olive and Pearlescent Violet, respectively) above have been given the 3-coat patent treatment. You can see the gloss well at the toes, but the luminosity of the paint itself gleams far brighter than the sealer.

039 - Patent Leather1

In the mule above, the base color is Burgundy. Burgundy isn't a metallic or pearl so the patent leather effect shows up better, but the patterned dots, painted with Metallic Bronze, does makes it less obvious as well.

Patent leather color block sandal in Neopaque colors0002

Margot flipped to this bold, beautiful patent leather strappy sandal on her Shoe-A-Day Calendar recently. You could easily achieve this exact look by using Neopaque Magenta, Turquoise, and Blue. Then brush on three or four thin coats of Sealer, and, since they are all matte colors, you'll get a beautiful patent leather look.

When browsing our Online Store for the best colors to create this effect, choose any of the Neopaque Colors, including Black, or choose Burgundy, Citrine, Grape, Indigo, Crimson, or Pewter from the Lumiere line. And have fun!

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