In mid-August of 2015 I was working on my Supergirl boots (Helen Slater version). I had to replace the boots because my cat clawed them up beyond repair. I bought a tougher material and set to work on the new boot covers. First thing to do was to free my base canvas shoes from the damaged boot covers. Initially, I was trying to remove them with needlenose pliers and patience. That took for-friggin’-ever and was hellacious on my hands. I freed one shoe that way then I finally wised up and used a solvent, plain ol’ acetone. The acetone made quick work of what would have taken hours if I’d kept at it with the pliers. Within a few minutes I had the remaining shoe clean and ready for a new upper. I made a sturdy poster board pattern in place of my tissue pattern to make things easier since I didn’t want to put holes in my boot fabric unnecessarily. I traced out the pieces on my fabric, got them cut out and prepared to paint them.
I hadn’t been able to find just the right shade of red in a suitably sturdy/accurate fabric so I purchased white with the intention of painting it. I tested a few paints and dyes and finally decided on Angelus leather paint. I mixed it with thinner and duller, both Angelus brand, to get a consistency similar to whole milk before loading it in my airbrush. The resulting mixture was quite transparent. It took several coats to get to the color I wanted and the small spray pattern of the airbrush (and/or my lack of skill) caused it to come out mottled where I’d overlapped paint layers. Oh, I also decided that when I was painting around the edges I’d put another boot piece underneath to catch the overspray so it wouldn’t be wasted hoping that it wouldn’t leave lines. Spoiler- it left lines. Lines that were nigh impossible to hide. If I ever decide to airbrush a large area like this again I may need to get an airbrush with a larger spray pattern. I might’ve been able to just brush this on but nooooo, I had to be fancy and use an airbrush. Anyway, witness my shame below:
That, obviously, would not do so it was time for damage control. I had also purchased a can of Nu-Life color spray to test but found that when stretched enough, the finish would flake off. In the picture below you can see little white speckles, that’s where it flaked. That drawback is why I chose the Angelus over the Nu-Life. However, my boots already had a nice red non-flaking underlayer so I went ahead and sprayed them with the Nu-Life content in the knowledge that if the Nu-Life did happen to flake it wouldn’t be noticeable. It covered up the blotchiness beautifully and the color was perfect. My boots were back on track.