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 HOWTO: Make your own Positive Grip Stormtrooper Boots

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Posts : 1077
Join date : 2011-01-01
Location : A Galaxy Far, Far Away!!

PostSubject: HOWTO: Make your own Positive Grip Stormtrooper Boots   Sun Jan 02, 2011 9:28 pm

Ok whilst making my new TK costume i wanted to go all out and get as close to screen accurate as possible. This obviously involved getting an old pair of black Chelsea boots and painting or dying them white.
After a little searching and research the closest boots i could find that would be up to the job were these British made boots by Jones the Boot Maker. They are not 100% due to the toe being more rounded than the originals which were more square, but they are really close.

I have seen people use white spray paint and shoe dye and i thought to myself, do these shoe dye kits really work on black boots turning them white? So i thought the only way to find out is to give it a go. Here are my results.
I decided to use this brand of white shoe dye, widely available on the internet. Tarrago Self-Shine Color Dye and preparer. It comes with everything you need, colour dye, preparer, a little brush and a small sponge. And of course instructions.

I followed the instructions to the letter, first using the preparer to remove any shoe polish and dirt and grim. It states to do this use a scourer pad to agitate the surface.

Next up is to mask off the sole of the shoes.

Then following the instructions i started to apply the shoe dye. In the instruction it suggests using the small brush included to dab the colour dye onto the small sponge and work in small circles slowly working around the boot.
At first this did not seem to work very well, the shoe dye just did not want to take to the black leather. This photo is after 2 coats.

Following the instructions i let the dye dry in between coats and carried on adding coat after coat. The shoe dye still did not cover the boots very well. This is after 4 coats, not much change.

In total i used 2 full shoe dye kits and that equates to about 10 - 12 full coats of this dye over the time frame of about a week or so. This is not a quick process. After i used all the dye the elastic in the boots were not totally covered by the white and to be honest neither were the boots. So i used a little white shoe whitener which was slightly better. I also gave the boots a quick going over with this too. Here are the finished results.

Now when i removed the masking tape from the soles of the boots the shoe dye started to peel off with it. It was like a latex covering which was a top layer on the leather rather than actually dying the boots. After all the time and effort i was not so impressed.

Overall i was not that impressed by this particular brand of shoe dye and would not recommend using it, there must be a better product on the market to use to convert black leather Chelsea boots in to Positive Grip Stormtrooper boots. I may yet remove as much of this as i can and try spray paint. They do however look very close to the real deal and some of the dye rubbed off after a 4 hour troop where the armour rubbed and so for accuracy sake they turned out really well.
My boots are the top picture and the original costume boots are the bottom picture.


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HOWTO: Make your own Positive Grip Stormtrooper Boots
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