• Start by cleaning the shoes with a damp cloth, then sketch out your design and purchase rhinestones and a jewel setter as necessary.
  • Place rhinestones using a strong adhesive, and then pick up crystals using the jewel setter, pressing down on the rhinestone's top to ensure the glue adheres.
  • Once the glue has dried, which can take up to three days, you can wipe away any remaining residue with rubbing alcohol and buff the rhinestones with a soft cloth.
  1. 1

    Pick the shoes you'd like to stun the room in. Whether they're wedges, heels, canvas sneakers, or flip flops, you can bling them out. The best bet is a pair of simple shoes with minimal embellishments (at least in the areas you intend to highlight). Brand-new footwear is ideal, but used footwear in good condition will do.

    • Flip-flops and canvas sneakers should always be brand new due to their rapid degradation.
  2. 2

    Use a damp cotton cloth to clean the shoes. Instead of water, use rubbing alcohol if the shoes are particularly grimy. However, leather shoes require special attention because rubbing alcohol can discolor them. [1] While it is not necessary to clean the entire stage, the area where you will be bedazzling should be wiped down.


  3. 3

    Organize your design before you start working on it. You'll be using powerful adhesives, making it tough to undo any mistakes. Now is the time to examine your footwear and determine the optimal placement for the rhinestones. The added weight of the rhinestones can make the shoes uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time, so it's best to avoid covering the entire shoe in them. Some suggestions to get you thinking:

    • To completely encase a pair of high heels or wedges
    • Dress up a pair of canvas sneakers by covering only the uppers.
    • You could try hiding only the toe cap's rubber on your canvas shoes. The possibility of the rhinestones falling off should be kept in mind.
    • In order to hide the straps, you must put a pair of flip flops in a box. Remember that the rhinestones could fall off, depending on the fabric.
  4. 4

    Get some crystals. Shoes adorned with silver or clear rhinestones can be worn with almost anything. Colored rhinestones can also be used, but care must be taken that they complement your shoe design. Whether you stick with rhinestones of uniform size and shape or experiment with a variety of shapes and sizes is up to you. Even if you're only going to be using rhinestones of a single size, it's a good idea to stock up on a few different shapes and sizes just in case. [2]

    • Use fine, high-quality rhinestones to decorate a pair of expensive high heels, wedges, or flats. We recommend trying a size between 5ss and 16ss. [3] Oversized plastic rhinestones are cheap and tacky.
    • Covering sneakers or flip flops made of canvas, for example, can be done with larger, cheaper rhinestones. [4]
  5. 5

    Get or create a jewel setter. A ball of wax is attached to the end of a small plastic stick, creating a jewel setter. If you don't have a toothpick, you can substitute a small ball of wax that has been affixed to a toothpick. There shouldn't be much more than a pinhead of space between the ball and the player. [5]

    • Small rhinestones are the only ones that require this. You won't require the services of a jeweler if the stone can be picked up with your finger.
    • A pair of jewelry tweezers can also be useful. They resemble cosmetic tweezers, but have a longer, thinner tip. They're typically kept in the beading aisle of craft stores.
  6. 6

    The crystals should be dumped onto a tray. The absence of a tray need not necessitate the use of anything other than a clean plastic lid. Be sure that the faceted side of each rhinestone is facing up and the flat back is facing down. It will be simpler to retrieve the crystals in this way. [6]

    • Use a small amount of glue at first if you have a lot of rhinestones.
    • Sorting them out beforehand is a good idea if you have objects of varying sizes and/or shapes to deal with. You can switch out the containers and lids if you need to.


  1. 1

    Affix a hefty adhesive patch to the shoe. Apply the adhesive to a one-by-two centimeter area of the shoe using a toothpick, skewer, or popsicle stick. Begin embellishing the heel of a high heel or wedge at the heel's edge or back instead of the heel's middle or top.

    • It's more manageable to divide the work into smaller sections. It also slows down the glue's drying time.
    • Put on some heavy-duty glue like E6000 or GemTac. White glue from the classroom or tacky glue won't hold together this project.
    • However, if the heel is made of fabric or if you are covering a pair of canvas sneakers, you may be able to use a high-quality fabric glue instead.
  2. 2

    To use the jewel setter, select a crystal. Strike the rhinestone's crown with the wax's tip. If the wax is good, the rhinestone will adhere to it. However, be careful not to press too firmly on the rhinestone, as doing so may cause it to become stuck to the wax instead of the glue. [7]

    • Don't freak out if you accidentally get wax on your crystal. Later, when you have time, you can handle it.
    • A fingernail will do the trick if you're dealing with big, chunky rhinestones.
    • A pair of jewelry tweezers can also be used to remove the stone. Grab the handles.
  3. 3

    Squish the jewel into the adhesive. Carefully remove the jewel setter after the rhinestone has adhered. If the rhinestone doesn't stay put, use an orange stick or a toothpick to prod it. [8]

    • Manicurists use an orange stick to push back cuticles at the same time. In more supermarkets and grocery stores, it can be found in the nail care aisle.
    • When working with jewelry tweezers, take care that the glue does not get on them. In that case, remove the glue as soon as possible.
  4. 4

    The rest of the shoe should be decorated with rhinestones. Always focus on 1- to 2-centimeter sections at a time. You can put them close together for maximum glitz, or spread them out for a more understated effect. A rhinestone of a different size may be used to fill in a space if the other stones are all the same size. [9] If you're going for a haphazard look with a range of sizes, big ones go in first, then fill in the spaces with smaller ones.

    • To maximize coverage, apply round rhinestones in staggered lines, just like bricks in a wall. [10]
    • For a clean, geometric effect, apply rhinestone squares in rows.
    • Incorporating rhinestones into your design is optional, but can make a big difference. Make patterns like daisies and other flowers out of tiny rhinestones. [11]


  1. 1

    Hold off until the glue dries. Read the package directions carefully to determine how long this will take with your particular brand of glue. E6000, for instance, needs between 24 and 72 hours to fully harden. [12]

    • Curing times and drying times are different. A shoe's wearer must wait for the glue's curing time if one was specified when assembling the shoe.
  2. 2

    You can use acetone or alcohol to remove any traces of the substance. A q-tip or a brush will do the trick here. You should only use a brush whose bristles you don't mind ruining if you must. However, avoid soaking the area, as this will cause the rhinestones to fall off due to the acetone dissolving the glue. [13]

    • If the rhinestone is plastic, test the acetone on a spare first. Certain types of plastic can be fogged or dissolved by it.
    • For plastic rhinestones, you can try removing the glue by scratching it. As a milder alternative to acetone, try rubbing alcohol if the sticker stubbornly refuses to budge.
    • Once the glue has dried, it won't be visible. Sometimes it's best to just leave it alone if it's not too noticeable.
  3. 3

    If necessary, buff the rhinestones with a soft cloth. You should only do this if the rhinestones have been contaminated by wax or fingerprints. Use a soft cotton or microfiber cloth to wipe them down until the residue is gone.

  4. 4

    Please take special care with the shoes. If the rhinestones are located in a flexible area (like the rubber toe caps on canvas sneakers or the straps on a pair of flip flops), they may come loose over time. In spite of the fact that the glue you used is extremely sturdy, you should still keep the shoes dry. They'll have an extended lifespan thanks to this


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  • Clean, well-maintained footwear
  • Swarovski crystals with a flat back (not "Hit Fix" crystals)
  • Powerful glue (like E6000 or GemTac, for example)
  • Platter or cover
  • Tweezers for setting stones in jewelry
  • Orange stick or toothpick
  • Craft sticks, such as toothpicks, skewers, or popsicle sticks
  • Fabrics made of cotton or microfiber, which are soft and absorbent
  • A solvent such as acetone or alcohol

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Co-authors: 7

Updated: Thursday, October 25, 2022

Views:  72,783

Categories: Special Articles | Embellishment for footwear

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