Monday, October 21, 2013

burnish your brogues!

I recently bought these lovely oxford brogues from Clarks. They are super comfy and I will be wearing them a lot this winter (and I know I'm not the only one!) But...

...have a look at the holes, see how the pale raw edges makes the shoe look a little... undercooked? I decided to remedy that by burnishing my brogues!

This is a technique I have used on other pairs of brogues and it is designed to deepen the colour of the punched pattern, and in this case to darken the stitching too.  Here's how.....

Grab an old toothbrush and some shoe polish that is darker than you would use if you were just going to give your shoes a polish. You might want to test it out in an inconspicuous spot first to make sure you're happy with the result before doing the whole shoe! 

With polish on the tip of the toothbrush bristles, use small circular motions to work the colour into all the holes - you're trying to dye the edges of these holes, so get those bristles in there! 

You want to darken the holes as well as the stitching, but not the rest of the shoe, so be quick about wiping off any stray bits of polish. 

Now, you can either let the polish sit for a little while before polishing it off (in which case the leather between the holes will deepen in colour too, which can give an interesting effect) or you can polish it off the surface straight away. Make sure there aren't any clumps of polish stuck in the holes.

Make sure you dye the raw edge as of the toecap, vamp etc as well as the edges of the holes. Here you can see the difference it's made already.

Raw edges left, burnished edges right.

A couple of days later I went over it again, this time leaving the polish on a little longer. So there you go - a way to get a richer, deeper colour into you brogues and to get them looking more finished (and dare I say looking more expensive?) 

Now that my brogues are sorted, bring on winter!