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A noob's guide to shoe dyeing


New Member
Apr 1, 2013
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Ever find a great pair of shoes, at a great price, that weren't the right color? I did- while looking for some brown shoes, I found a pair of Brooks Brothers Fifth Avenues...in walnut (nothing against walnut, but I'll get more use from brown). But they were $149! Sold. Now what to do?

A little internet research turned up the name Fiebings, so I bought some of their dye and deglazer.

Here are the tools- gloves are a good idea. Cotton pads (they're for make-up removal- I got some funny looks in the ladies aisle). And the deglazer- you'll need almost a whole bottle for a pair of shoes.

Victim number 1. I taped off the sole edge, but I'm not sure that was a necessary step.

Here's after deglazing. Dip the cotton pads in the deglazer and scrub away. Do this several times, until the pads come away clean.

Whatever color you want, start lighter! Here's a couple coats of what I though was a lighter brown- I stopped here. Their guide colors are a bit misleading. I used a small paintbrush instead of the applicator that comes with the dye- much more control.

Here they are after a couple coats of polish. There are some uneven areas, but they're getting better with each coat of polish.

I was nervous about trying this on a nice, new pair of shoes, but I'm happy with the results and currently wearin' the hell out of them. I hope this helps!
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