How to Spray Paint Shoes

Adding spray paint to leather shoes or canvas shoes can be quick and easy, so long as you follow the right steps. 

This post includes all of the details that you need to know on how to spray paint shoes properly. 


Preparation is key when it comes to spray painting shoe fabric. 

  • Use a deglazer, rubbing alcohol, or nail polish remover to clean the top layer of your shoe fibers. This gets rid of the waxy finish and dirt that build up on a lot of surfaces.
  • Apply the solution to a cotton swab and wipe the surface until it’s clean and any shine is gone. 
  • Leave the solution to evaporate on its own before moving on to the spray painting. 
  • It may be best to do this in a well-ventilated area. 

How To Spray Paint Shoes

  • Put plastic bags or old newspapers inside the shoes so that you can create a smooth surface. The smoother the surface, the better your coat of paint will stick to the fabric. 
  • If there are areas that you don’t want to be painted, cover them with masking tape.
  • Make sure that you’re in a well-ventilated space, and begin to add thin coats of spray paint to your shoe. 
  • It’s tempting to add thick layers of fabric paint when designing black shoes. Adding several thin coats works better than fewer thick coats. 
  • After each application of spray paint, leave your pair of shoes to dry for at least one hour before adding a second coat.
  • Once you’ve finished painting the shoes, carefully remove the painters tape and leave the shoes to sit there for 24 hours. 

Additional Tips

  • If you’re using multiple colors, be sure to start with the lightest color. Gradually progress to using the darker colors with each layer. 
  • You may want to practice spray painting with old shoes that you’ve worn. This ensures that if you make any mistakes on an old pair, you know why they happened so that you can avoid damaging the leather or fabrics of the shoes that you want to wear. 
  • Angelus Leather Paint is one of the best spray paints available. However, you can try other brands from a hardware store and see which is the best spray paint for you.
  • If the color becomes too dark, you may want to consider using paint thinner on top of the regular paint that you spray painted.

Also read: Best Spray Paint For Shoes


The methods above can be used for all kinds of shoes, including vinyl shoes, leather shoes, canvas shoes, and fabric shoes. Be sure to follow the steps mentioned in this post to ensure that you properly prepare your shoes so that you get the most out of the paint job.

Hopefully, the tips have been useful in helping you with your painting shoes projects.


How to protect spray-painted shoes?

Once you’ve finished spray painting your patent leather shoes, you’ll want to protect them. This can be done by applying a finish once your shoes have dried.

You can opt for a shiny or non-shiny finish depending on your preference. Make sure that you gently rub the finish using light coats. Let each coat dry before applying the next coat. 

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Written By Adam Rushton

Adam has made a name for himself in the illustration industry and is a passionate blogger and writer on the subject of art, illustration and graphic design.

His artwork has been featured in countless publications and used for very well-known media projects. As a professional illustrator for over 20 years, Adams media outlets, a wealth of knowledge, and experience enable him to consult and advise artists and illustrators in this country (from York and Manchester to Southampton and London) and all over the world.