Tutorial - LV custom Nike Air Force 1's Make your own TODAY!
Thank you and welcome to coming and hanging out with me in the written form.
In this day and age where EVERYONE you know wants to be a pseudo hypebeast sometimes you have to do it yourself because of a number of reason, you can't afford it, you are creative, artistic, or the best reason is...you want to make some money!
Here is the best way to make a Louis Vuitton Air Force 1.
Sneaker Customizing is not some new age phenomenon, but its popularity has grown significantly over the past 3 years and hasn't showed signs of slowing down.
The LV custom painted Air Force 1's we're literally hyped for over 2 years straight and whether or not the customizing community fully accepted them as a true artistic expression onto sneakers as art they still performed the service. They all caved and did a pair for customers and for hype reasons alike.
"NOW LETS GET INTO THE NITTY GRITTY"
List of tools/ingredients
- The Painting Medium, sneakers, tshirts, scarves, or anything you choose to paint.
- Any Colored Leather Paint
- Custom Stencils and Transfer Paper
- Cleaning Rag/Smocks
- Nail Polish Remover / Acetone / Angelus Leather Preparer and Deglazer
- Cotton Swabs/ Q-tips
- Paper Towels
- Heat gun or blow dryer
- Table or adequate work space
- Craft Knife / Blade
- Paint finisher
This is a list of all of the necessary tools to get this job done right.
After acquiring all of the necessary tools for this job, have them set in front of you on a table or work space.
Determine where your stencil will be going on the medium you chose. In this scenario we are using a sneaker, particularly a Nike Air Force 1. If you chose the toe box and swoosh you want to get your cotton swab or qtip and add some acetone or nail polish remover to it to take the factory finish off of the leather on the sneaker you are working with.
Remember to do this 2x minimum and using different cotton swabs or qtips as well.
Prepare the Stencil.
Stencils come as a whole with the cutout and negative film or vice versa depending on how you look at it. Peel off the space you want to paint and leave the areas you do not want painted on the stencil sheet.
Stencils are glorified stickers so once you peel off the negative area that you will be painting it is time to peel them off. If you plan on placing them by hand good luck. If you want to use the transfer paper they are much easier to use.
Unroll the transfer paper and then place on top of the stencil area and roll onto the page. Once rolled onto the page you must spread the sticky side of the transfer paper so the stencils can grab onto the transfer paper making it much easier to transfer from the original stencil sheet to the actual medium you're working on.
Carefully place the transfer paper in the allotted area on the sneaker you're working on. Once on the area apply pressure on top of the non sticky side of the transfer paper leaving the sticky side of the stencils onto the toe box or swoosh of the sneakers. Carefully peel the transfer paper away from the sneaker leaving the stencil in its place. Repeat on both shoes.
*ProTip* use a heat gun or blow dryer to heat the sticky side of the stencil once its placed after using the transfer paper just to get it to stick a little better.
Tape off the areas you do not want painted with Masking Tape. Tape around the toe box and the swoosh and repeat step for both shoes before painting. PLEASE make sure that if you do a tape job you pay attention to your tape job. A tape job will make or break your project.
The best paint we've seen and used is Angelus Acrylic Paints. We suggest mixing Angelus paints with 2Thin or GAC900 for a couple of reasons.
Angelus Paints are Thicker than a milkshake so you want to dilute with the 2thin or GAC900 so you aren't caking the paint onto the sneaker. This will lead to cracking. 2 Thin and GAC900 offer the paint mobility and pliability. We suggest using a 1-.75 ratio of Angelus Paints to 2thin or GAC900. Other folks say 1-1, I like 1-.75.
Painting and Drying
PAINTBRUSH - When using a paintbrush make sure you use the goldilocks of paintbrushes something not too wide and not too small. You want the perfect size that is going to give you a nice even brushed layer of paint onto the sneaker between the stencils. Apply 1 layer of paint and then continue onto the next area and then onto the next shoe and use a heat gun or blow dryer to assist the paint drying process. When drying with a blow dryer or heat gun move the heating mechanism side to side in a slow motion to spread the heat around not leaving it to one section too long as it will damage the paint.
Repeat the painting and the drying step until desired color is met.
Removal of the tape:
Once you finish painting and drying and you feel satisfied that this is the best paint job you can do then first wait until the last coat of paint is finished drying then you can remove the tape. If you have done the steps up until here correctly you should have zero issues peeling the tape off.
The finishers are what makes the paint last on the sneakers. They offer a layer of protection against the elements that are trying to destroy your shoe art. The best we have seen so far is LK which can be found here. This scratch resistant finisher will leave your artwork unscuffable to the elements. (to a certain degree.) Apply with a paintbrush or airbrush and clean paintbrush or airbrush immediately after using as it will create a protective layer on the paintbrush or inside the airbrush making them difficult to clean later.
WEAR and FLEX!
You're finished and you just made a crazy pair for yourself, family or friends. We hope you found this informative and the break down is fairly simple. We made a video that shows the exact process so check it out!
Thanks for hanging out,