How to: Customise your Doctor Martins

My lovely red patent leather Doctor Martins had finally begun to look a bit desperate, the patent was peeling away and no longer could nail varnish patch them up any longer. The actual boot itself was fine, just didn’t look too cool anymore. So rather than put them in the bin or turn them into a clock like a previous pair of mine have been, I decided to have a go at customising them.

My first attempt was with fabric paint, thinking this will cover the exposed suede and the leftover patent, but it wouldn’t stay put and would rub off easily.   So, I tried super gloss outdoor spray paint which has worked wonderfully!!

You will need:

1 pair of old Docs

Masking tape

Assorted super gloss outdoor spray paint


Stage 1:

Doc 1

Peel off any patent from your Docs that is flacking away (this is not a quick job!). Then cover any areas you do not wish to get the spray paint onto e.g. the rubber sole, fabric tops.

Stage 2:

Doc 2

You must spray your Docs outside, or in a very well ventilated area. Place your Docs onto some newspaper and start spraying, one colour at a time. Try not to add too much spray paint at each stage as the paint will get too runny and dry with drips (unsightly.) When spraying, dry and layer up your colours slowly. Leave to dry for at least four hours or whatever the spray paint recommends. Repeat this step a couple of times, until you are happy with your look.

Stage 3:

Doc 3

Once dry, take off masking tape, treat any areas where the paint has slipped through the masking tape – even a permanent marker pen might just do the job of touch-ups to the rubber sole. Lace back up and enjoy!


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