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007Bond

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@007Bond , Feibings would have those looking almost as good as new.
Ok that is good news.

Any suggestions on picking the color?

This would be my first dye job so not sure how to go. Meaning you see the original color you see what they are today. Do I buy a color based on original or the aged. I see a few colors they make one a reviewer said was like Harley orange that's more close to the original then some of the other colors that are more on the tan and red side.

Quick edit I think the british tan may be the right color it's orangeish like the original if that is the way to go?
 
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stook1

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Ok that is good news.

Any suggestions on picking the color?

This would be my first dye job so not sure how to go. Meaning you see the original color you see what they are today. Do I buy a color based on original or the aged. I see a few colors they make one a reviewer said was like Harley orange that's more close to the original then some of the other colors that are more on the tan and red side.

Quick edit I think the british tan may be the right color it's orangeish like the original if that is the way to go?
I've dyed shell before, albeit not a shoe but rather a wallet. It was rocado's ocean blue color shell, whch is sort of a medium green/blue. Over time (not much, actually) the dye faded and the base brown began to show through and it looked like crap. I dyed it navy blue a long time ago and it has held up extremely well.

The process is more or less the same as dye work on any other leather. Strip with acetone, apply dye, condition. In terms of colors, if you are looking to keep them light colored then perhaps purchase more than one color in case it doesn't pan out to your liking. Also, plan to cut the color and apply the diluted dye gradually starting out light and getting darker. Generally, it is kind of difficult to go lighter than the leather's existing color but it might be possible so long as you aren't expecting anything really radical like turn a black shoe into a tan shoe.

At least on SF, I think most of the expertise and discussion on this topic is on the Vintage thread so you might shift your discussion there if you need more assistance.
 

Shawnc

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You can dye shell? I didn't know that.
Yes, I've done a few times but I had dyed a lot of shoes before I had ever heard of shell. The process is the same but it will likely require an extra coat or two. But once you have the shoes adequately protected (tape around the welts) the application of the dye is truly the easy part.

Ok that is good news.

Any suggestions on picking the color?

This would be my first dye job so not sure how to go. Meaning you see the original color you see what they are today. Do I buy a color based on original or the aged. I see a few colors they make one a reviewer said was like Harley orange that's more close to the original then some of the other colors that are more on the tan and red side.

Quick edit I think the british tan may be the right color it's orangeish like the original if that is the way to go?
I think your color options are limited to something darker (Burgundy, brown or even navy but it may look closer to black). I don't think something lighter will cover the spots. @stook1 has it absolutely right. Use acetone to prep the leather, apply a coat, waitat least a few hours (a day is better) then apply the second. With shell, you will likelyneed to repeat for a 3rd coat. Give it a few days and start treating with a cream conditioner (VSC/BICK4, etc.). Then your product of choice to get the shine you're after. Sounds like a lot but the toughest part is getting the tape right to avoid dye getting on the welt. You will need to apply some tape on certain parts of the lining. Not mandatory but it will look sloppy if you don't. Also tough is having the patience to allow days to pass between coats and at least a week before conditioning. Additionally, don't get discouraged by the look after the applying the dye. The difference after you add the first coat of conditioner will be where you see nice results. Lastly, this is not foolproof. I've never had a problem but again, I've done it quite a bit. I would not tr it on shell that I wasn't willing to accept the risk of failure. Hope you go for it. Good luck.

I've dyed shell before, albeit not a shoe but rather a wallet. It was rocado's ocean blue color shell, whch is sort of a medium green/blue. Over time (not much, actually) the dye faded and the base brown began to show through and it looked like crap. I dyed it navy blue a long time ago and it has held up extremely well.

The process is more or less the same as dye work on any other leather. Strip with acetone, apply dye, condition. In terms of colors, if you are looking to keep them light colored then perhaps purchase more than one color in case it doesn't pan out to your liking. Also, plan to cut the color and apply the diluted dye gradually starting out light and getting darker. Generally, it is kind of difficult to go lighter than the leather's existing color but it might be possible so long as you aren't expecting anything really radical like turn a black shoe into a tan shoe.

At least on SF, I think most of the expertise and discussion on this topic is on the Vintage thread so you might shift your discussion there if you need more assistance.
Very good advice.
 
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stook1

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Yes, I've done a few times but I had dyed a lot of shoes before I had ever heard of shell. The process is the same but it will likely require an extra coat or two. But once you have the shoes adequately protected (tape around the welts) the application of the dye is truly the easy part.



I think your color options are limited to something darker (Burgundy, brown or even navy but it may look closer to black). I don't think something lighter will cover the spots. @stooOTEhas it absolutely right. Use acetone to prep the leather, apply a coat, waitat least a few hours (a day is better) then apply the second. With shell, you will likelyneed to repeat for a 3rd coat. Give it a few days and start treating with a cream conditioner (VSC/BICK4, etc.). Then your product of choice to get the shine you're after. Sounds like a lot but the toughest part is getting the tape right to avoid dye getting on the welt. You will need to apply some tape on certain parts of the lining. Not mandatory but it will look sloppy if you don't. Also tough is having the patience to allow days to pass between coats and at least a week before conditioning. Additionally, don't get discouraged by the look after the applying the dye. The difference after you add the first coat of conditioner will be where you see nice results. Lastly, this is not foolproof. I've never had a problem but again, I've done it quite a bit. I would not tr it on shell that I wasn't willing to accept the risk of failure. Hope you go for it. Good luck.



Very good advice.
Good advice above... a couple of related points just based upon my own experience with dye generally. I've not seen the need to wait between coats, or for that matter waiting for that length of time for conditioning. YMMV on this one. This may be my limited experience with shell specifically, which may be more difficult for the dye to penetrate for obvious reasons. I did not personally find that to be the case but my experience is relatively limited.

Also, pay close attention to feedback about diluting your dyes. As @Shawnc explained, it can be difficult or impossible to tell your progress until you condition so it is very easy to accidentally go much darker than you realized. Patience is key.

Finally, if you have never done this before, consider picking up a pair of very cheap calf shoes (ie. thrifted or ebay, etc) for the purpose of experimenting. It's not a guarantee no matter what you do but having some degree of familiarity with the process is helpful. It's not that difficult to do but like most things experience is helpful.
 

Turns31

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I would recommend picking the darkest color you're comfortable with. The only color that's going to be perfectly consistent is black. Anything lighter and there will be splotches where it didn't get absorbed evenly. I would also recommend using Saphirs Tincture dyes. Worked better than Angelus and Fieblings for me.
 

stook1

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I would recommend picking the darkest color you're comfortable with. The only color that's going to be perfectly consistent is black. Anything lighter and there will be splotches where it didn't get absorbed evenly. I would also recommend using Saphirs Tincture dyes. Worked better than Angelus and Fieblings for me.
Yah, as said already, I don't have enough experience with shell specifically to take issue with your point here but if it were me, I would certainly try lighter colors first. I don't see any reason to go directly to black or even some other very dark color. I think something along the lines of color 4 or cognac may be doable considering the color of the shoes currently. Will he have to go darker? Maybe. The existing spots, to the extent they still show, will probably blend to an acceptable level into the new color. Other than Alden, shell isn't consistently colored in the first place...

As for the dyes, I have only ever used the regular, water based Angelus dyes. Can't speak to the alternatives but I found it to be effective and durable.
 

Shawnc

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Good advice above... a couple of related points just based upon my own experience with dye generally. I've not seen the need to wait between coats, or for that matter waiting for that length of time for conditioning. YMMV on this one. This may be my limited experience with shell specifically, which may be more difficult for the dye to penetrate for obvious reasons. I did not personally find that to be the case but my experience is relatively limited.

Also, pay close attention to feedback about diluting your dyes. As @Shawnc explained, it can be difficult or impossible to tell your progress until you condition so it is very easy to accidentally go much darker than you realized. Patience is key.

Finally, if you have never done this before, consider picking up a pair of very cheap calf shoes (ie. thrifted or ebay, etc) for the purpose of experimenting. It's not a guarantee no matter what you do but having some degree of familiarity with the process is helpful. It's not that difficult to do but like most things experience is helpful.
This is exactly why I recommend waiting between coats. Absolutely not necessary with calf.
 

stook1

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Hey @007Bond something else to consider... maybe try sun fading them? It might be an effective way to mitigate the darker stains. The sun is pretty darn powerful. Hard to say what it will do till you try but it might be a less risky first step before trying the dye and, if you still decide to dye in the end, it might at least make the specks significantly lighter in color. Only negative is time... it'll take probably a few weeks of intense sun.
 
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stook1

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This is exactly why I recommend waiting between coats. Absolutely not necessary with calf.
Ah gotcha... figured that was the case. Thanks for replying. I'd like to try dying more shell one of these days it's just a more expensive proposition and I haven't had an occasion to need/want to do it thus far.
 

007Bond

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I've dyed shell before, albeit not a shoe but rather a wallet. It was rocado's ocean blue color shell, whch is sort of a medium green/blue. Over time (not much, actually) the dye faded and the base brown began to show through and it looked like crap. I dyed it navy blue a long time ago and it has held up extremely well.

The process is more or less the same as dye work on any other leather. Strip with acetone, apply dye, condition. In terms of colors, if you are looking to keep them light colored then perhaps purchase more than one color in case it doesn't pan out to your liking. Also, plan to cut the color and apply the diluted dye gradually starting out light and getting darker. Generally, it is kind of difficult to go lighter than the leather's existing color but it might be possible so long as you aren't expecting anything really radical like turn a black shoe into a tan shoe.

At least on SF, I think most of the expertise and discussion on this topic is on the Vintage thread so you might shift your discussion there if you need more assistance.
Yes, I've done a few times but I had dyed a lot of shoes before I had ever heard of shell. The process is the same but it will likely require an extra coat or two. But once you have the shoes adequately protected (tape around the welts) the application of the dye is truly the easy part.



I think your color options are limited to something darker (Burgundy, brown or even navy but it may look closer to black). I don't think something lighter will cover the spots. @stook1 has it absolutely right. Use acetone to prep the leather, apply a coat, waitat least a few hours (a day is better) then apply the second. With shell, you will likelyneed to repeat for a 3rd coat. Give it a few days and start treating with a cream conditioner (VSC/BICK4, etc.). Then your product of choice to get the shine you're after. Sounds like a lot but the toughest part is getting the tape right to avoid dye getting on the welt. You will need to apply some tape on certain parts of the lining. Not mandatory but it will look sloppy if you don't. Also tough is having the patience to allow days to pass between coats and at least a week before conditioning. Additionally, don't get discouraged by the look after the applying the dye. The difference after you add the first coat of conditioner will be where you see nice results. Lastly, this is not foolproof. I've never had a problem but again, I've done it quite a bit. I would not tr it on shell that I wasn't willing to accept the risk of failure. Hope you go for it. Good luck.



Very good advice.
Good advice above... a couple of related points just based upon my own experience with dye generally. I've not seen the need to wait between coats, or for that matter waiting for that length of time for conditioning. YMMV on this one. This may be my limited experience with shell specifically, which may be more difficult for the dye to penetrate for obvious reasons. I did not personally find that to be the case but my experience is relatively limited.

Also, pay close attention to feedback about diluting your dyes. As @Shawnc explained, it can be difficult or impossible to tell your progress until you condition so it is very easy to accidentally go much darker than you realized. Patience is key.

Finally, if you have never done this before, consider picking up a pair of very cheap calf shoes (ie. thrifted or ebay, etc) for the purpose of experimenting. It's not a guarantee no matter what you do but having some degree of familiarity with the process is helpful. It's not that difficult to do but like most things experience is helpful.
I would recommend picking the darkest color you're comfortable with. The only color that's going to be perfectly consistent is black. Anything lighter and there will be splotches where it didn't get absorbed evenly. I would also recommend using Saphirs Tincture dyes. Worked better than Angelus and Fieblings for me.
Yah, as said already, I don't have enough experience with shell specifically to take issue with your point here but if it were me, I would certainly try lighter colors first. I don't see any reason to go directly to black or even some other very dark color. I think something along the lines of color 4 or cognac may be doable considering the color of the shoes currently. Will he have to go darker? Maybe. The existing spots, to the extent they still show, will probably blend to an acceptable level into the new color. Other than Alden, shell isn't consistently colored in the first place...

As for the dyes, I have only ever used the regular, water based Angelus dyes. Can't speak to the alternatives but I found it to be effective and durable.
This is exactly why I recommend waiting between coats. Absolutely not necessary with calf.
Hey @007Bond something else to consider... maybe try sun fading them? It might be an effective way to mitigate the darker stains. The sun is pretty darn powerful. Hard to say what it will do till you try but it might be a less risky first step before trying the dye and, if you still decide to dye in the end, it might at least make the specks significantly lighter in color. Only negative is time... it'll take probably a few weeks of intense sun.

OK thank you everyone.

I have tried to lighten a shell #8 wallet in the sun for a few months maybe in NJ it is not that powerful did not do to much in that time.

I am thinking based on all the advice clean them up with the acetone and mask off. Then go for something darker as noted to cover the spots and see where it lands. At this point the way they are looking I don't have much to lose and more to gain.

Thanks again I will post pics when done regardless of the outcome.
 

FatTuesday

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Great info on dying shell guys! I've never tried it, but may one day.

I have lightened shell in sunlight several times. Below are burgundy shell AE Patriots that I lightened to cherry red. Not sure if lightening will help dark spots, but no harm in trying.

20180403_092140.jpg
 

007Bond

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OK I cleaned up the shoes with acetone and then taped them off. This is the first time I am doing this and I found smaller pieces of tape 1 inch to 1 and a half max gave the best results for getting the tape down inside the welt.

I ordered British Tan seems a bit darker then and original and Burgundy that seems even darker. I will test them I was thinking on the tongue area to see which one covers the spots the best if at all. They should be here tomorrow Amazon prime. Since I am really in no rush I figured let me order a few colors I can see myself using again. This way I test a spot if it is good great if not I think I can see that dye being used in the future. If these don't cover good I can order a darker color that covers the spots better. I did watch several youtube videos to get some ideas but seems every base leather vs dye color yields different results. So until I test the actual dye on the actual shoes I think there is no way to know if the results will be great. I mean sure if you are dying black or a dark brown you know what you are going to get. I am thinking other less full dark colors you have to test things out to see if you are going to like it and if it will cover what you want. I am not sure what to expect as some videos I watched the color really soaked in and seemed to even things out. Also I think it was here on Styleforum I seen a post where this guy took photographs under different light a light that penetrates the outside color we see on the shoes. It revealed actual dark stains under the color. He was saying that the darker colors could really be messed up underneath and you would not really know. So for this reason I am hopeful of good results.



IMG_20210223_095026.jpg
IMG_20210223_103120.jpg
 

stook1

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OK I cleaned up the shoes with acetone and then taped them off. This is the first time I am doing this and I found smaller pieces of tape 1 inch to 1 and a half max gave the best results for getting the tape down inside the welt.

I ordered British Tan seems a bit darker then and original and Burgundy that seems even darker. I will test them I was thinking on the tongue area to see which one covers the spots the best if at all. They should be here tomorrow Amazon prime. Since I am really in no rush I figured let me order a few colors I can see myself using again. This way I test a spot if it is good great if not I think I can see that dye being used in the future. If these don't cover good I can order a darker color that covers the spots better. I did watch several youtube videos to get some ideas but seems every base leather vs dye color yields different results. So until I test the actual dye on the actual shoes I think there is no way to know if the results will be great. I mean sure if you are dying black or a dark brown you know what you are going to get. I am thinking other less full dark colors you have to test things out to see if you are going to like it and if it will cover what you want. I am not sure what to expect as some videos I watched the color really soaked in and seemed to even things out. Also I think it was here on Styleforum I seen a post where this guy took photographs under different light a light that penetrates the outside color we see on the shoes. It revealed actual dark stains under the color. He was saying that the darker colors could really be messed up underneath and you would not really know. So for this reason I am hopeful of good results.



View attachment 1560994View attachment 1560995
Nice job. Couple tips... generally best to try to tape right before you dye since some tapes are more prone to leaving reside or impacting the leather you have taped off the longer it is left on there. You did such a good job, I'd leave it alone since it's time consuming to do. Before you dye, go over all the edges to make sure that you have a really good seal. Dye has a way of bleeding.

Also, assuming you got water based dye, get yourself some alcohol for diluting the colors. You can use dye reducer or, if you like isopropyl alcohol or denatured alcohol should be fine. If your goal is to stay as light as possible this will let you apply a few coats to gradually get to a level that meets your requirements rather than going dark faster than you want with one coat of full strength dye.
 

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