Tuesday, March 15, 2011

guest blogger: Sparkles + Bling

Since we have been a little MIA on the blogging scene (renovations being completed), we reached out to bride, Christina Cameron, and asked her to share a DIY tutorial on the completely encrusted Swarovski crystal bridal shoes that she just completed in 16 hrs (if you do that math, that is four friday nights out with the girls you would be missing!). Completely worth it though... how amazing are they?

From Christina:

"I love sparkles and bling, so of course I had to incorporate that into my wedding theme! After seeing numerous celebrities like Beyonce' and Sarah Jessica Parker in their Christian Louboutins, I became obsessed! Unfortunately, Christian Louboutins come with a price tag of about $3,000.00 which is a tad over my wedding budget to say the least! After searching store after store for the perfect bridal shoes and coming up empty handed every time, I decided that if I couldn't find what I was looking for I would just make it! I did some research online, and found an awesome website to order supplies. From there I began the process of creating my dream wedding shoe."
Supplies you will need:

    1.      The Bead Smith Magical Pick For Rhinestones: This tool is amazing! It has a sticky tip that is perfect for picking up the crystals, but not so sticky that it will leave a residue. There is also an angled tip that is great for placement of the crystals. After a while the tip will lose some of its stickiness, but it does come with a rejuvenating kit and instructions on how to clean and re-use.

    2.      Magical Tray For Flat Back Swarovski Crystals: This tray helps to keep all the crystals face up so they are easier to pick up and apply. The less crystals you put in it, the better it works.

    3.      E-6000 Glue: This glue can be found at just about any craft store, and it is super strong! It can get very gummy when too much is applied, so it is best to buy a small glue brush to spread the glue thinly and evenly across the shoe.

    4.      Glue Applicator Syringe: This helps to get the tiny spots on the shoe. I would suggest to get maybe2 syringes (one for each shoe) because the glue clogs them and they are pretty much one use only. I saved the syringe for the end to fill in the spots with small, hard to cover spots on the shoe.

    5.      Crystals: For a pump like mine, I needed two wholesale packs of ss16 crystals, 2 wholesale packs of ss12 crystals, and one pack of ss5 crystals. Even though they are more expensive, I highly recommend the use of Swarovski crystals because they are better quality and clarity, which achieves the extra sparkly look of the shoes.

6.    Shoes: Though you can use many types of shoes, I suggest using patent leather because the glue and crystals adhere to it very well and gives the shoe a sleek, even look. The color of the shoe also makes a difference in how the crystals will look on the final product. If you plan on using clear crystals, be sure to use a silver or white shoe for best results.


Brush glue evenly on shoe (or fill syringe with glue and apply). Be sure to not use too much glue, because the crystals can sink into the glue which gives them a cloudy look. Use the Magical Pick to pick up the crystal, and simply place on the shoe...it's that easy! I would suggest starting out with small patches until you feel comfortable enough with the process to try a larger area. The glue can get tacky very quickly, so be sure to place the crystals as soon as the glue is applied. For my shoes, I used the ss16's on the heel, ss16's on the tip of the shoe, and then slowly integrated the ss12's going up the shoe for a multi dimensional look. I then used the ss5's to fill in the smaller spaces. The closer you place the crystals, the more sparkly the effect will be. Be sure to let the shoes dry completely (24 hours) before wearing them. This is a very time consuming process, but well worth it in the end. Make sure you give yourself adequate time to complete...just to give you an idea, my shoes took a total of 16 hours.

The shoes I used are the Jessica Simpson Acadia pumps in White Pearl Patent. The crystals I used are Swarovski Crystal Moonlight, which you can find at wholesale prices on websites such as http://www.lovetocrystal.com/.

Here is the cost run down:

Only a fraction of the price compared to what you would have spent! Keep in mind, you can save a lot of money by buying cheaper shoes, and you can buy any kind of flat back rhinestone. I chose Swarovski because of the quality. For brides on a tighter budget, here is another website for much cheaper: http://www.rhinestonebiz.com/c-473-flat-back-rhinestones.aspx.

nicole brennan  .  302.545.0412  .  nicole@lovelygirlsevents.com  .  wilmington


rochelle said...

Good Job on your shoes, they look beautiful!

I too sell crystals at wholesale prices for those interested.

james said...

Hello, A very insightful post. Thanks for the info. Its great that if our default settings are giving us messy or stringy builds, this dialog can probably help.Thanks for the information.
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Hannah said...

I have been looking everywhere for info on sizes of crystals and amount of crystals needed. I just want to rhinestone the heel of my shoe, can you give me any advice?

kimberly uy said...

Thanks for giving me an idea on how to create also my dream wedding shoe. The crystals are so beautiful it's like Machine cut rhinestones that brings a fashionable look and style.

Penguin said...

My husband and I got married here, and we couldn't have found a better venue! It is so beautiful, with dark hardwood floors. Wrought iron chandeliers and some really cool artwork on the big pocket doors at one end of the room.
reception hall

fzillion casual said...

What happens at a normal wedding?
Nice article. This is so much more than I needed! But will all come in use thanks!
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