Posts Tagged ‘final fantasy xiii

I was going to do a post on Lightning’s gloves instead, but since I don’t have enough photos, SERAH’S SHOES IT IS. Serah seriously has the most frustrating shoes in existence. For one, they have a small heel, but then they also have black soles, sawtooth lacing, an odd tan colour, a weirdly odd hi-top and… well, you get the picture. Literally.

Actually, her shoes were what scared me the most about the costume (apart from the chiffon shift) simply because they were so simple but so easy to screw up. So, the first step was to acquire a pair of shoes that I could mess around a bit with. In the end I got a pair of plain white sz 38 Converse-lookalikes off TradeMe, which were perfect due to the lack of the silly Converse logo on the sides of their hi-tops.

Something like these, although mine were a weird Chinese brand.

Next step was to make them tan! Having had mixed results with Dylon dyes before (and many, many stressfits), I wanted to try a different brand of dye that’d hopefully have better results. Since the shoes were made out of canvas and therefore a natural fibre, I went with the Procion MX Acid dyes which actually turned out to be extremely awesome. They were easy to use, quick to fix/set and the colour was really vibrant… a little too vibrant, actually. For Serah’s shoes, I picked their Straw colour, though in hindsight I should’ve fixed a duller tone because they ended up too yellow. This problem arose from picking a colour off an old coloursheet! So always be careful.

For the New Zealanders using this blog, I bought mine from Tillia Dyes & Fabrics which had great customer service, plus they have a wee dying tutorial on their website which was really useful! Postage was fast and they have a pretty decent range of colours to choose from as well. Plus they supply soda ash at a very reasonable price (which is needed for fixing the acid dye.) So, the shoes! They were dyed, but turned out a bit too yellow, after much deliberation.


Since Serah’s shoes are much duller/tan than this sorta beige colour, I spent a long time trying to figure out what I could do to dull them. It was a week before the convention, so ordering more dye would be useless as it wouldn’t get to me in time, plus then there’s the drying/fixing stage– so, as a last resort, I dyed the shoes with tea. Plain black tea. I was EXTREMELY SKEPTICAL about whether or not this would work, but it actually turned them amazing! The exact colour I wanted.

Here’s the method I used for tea dying.

1.) First, soak all the fabric and make sure it’s wet through. Warm water is probably best, though I think I did mine in cool. This is to help the dye adhere evenly to the fabric.
2.) Get a vessel that’ll fit the item you’re dying and put in about a litre of warm/hot water, as well as half a teaspoon of salt (to help fix the dye from the tea).
3.) Put in 3-4 teabags for a mild colouration and wait for them to steep. If you want an even colour on your fabric, remove the teabags before putting your item in the water.
4.) After that, I then kneaded the fabric for a wee while to make sure everything was mixed evenly, then I left them for about 6-7 hours with one teabag left sitting in the water.
5.) When they’re done, just wring them out and wait for them to dry!

Visibly duller, and everyone can go home happy.

After that ordeal, the next task was to make the soles black. Our Hope and I went through a number of options (as we both needed to somehow blacken the soles of our shoes) that we could go for. Acrylic was one, but it’s pretty poor at staying on when faced with friction, so that was ruled out. We were at the point of losing hope (PUN) when she discovered something magical– TYRE PAINT. Yes, the paint you use to make your car tyres all lovely and shiny. We used that on the soles of our shoes and it stayed on through the whole convention which was much more than I was expecting, and it had great coverage! I only wished it came it more colours, it’d be incredibly useful for other shoe alterations.

The laces were placed with black ones and then done up with the sawtooth method (though Serah’s have them going opposite sides!) A tutorial for this is here, with a pretty diagram that makes them way easy. (:



  • Lucy Morris: I'm super glad it was of use to you! Do you have any photos of your cousin? (:
  • DHB - Jaeger: Thank you for this tutorial. I "borrowed" a few ideas from it to make my own KD cosplay, which premiered last weekend ^_^
  • serafiki: I got them off of my country's local auction site, TradeMe. (: