Tanglewood Sue-Per Shifted Painted Cowboy Boot Tutorial

You ready to create some Color Shifting Painted Leather Boots??

Buckle Up cause this is gonna be a wild ride!

Creating Color Shift Painted Boots

Who doesn't want a bit of bling on the boots right? I mean when I buys shoes of any kind I am constantly disappointed by the selection afforded me with my adult size 10 women's feet.

I stare longingly at the kids section with sparkles and sequins and dopamine poppin' colors.

Well enough of that. I figured out how to make my own. I learned how to paint my shoes any color I wanted and with the invention of my Tanglewood Sue-per Shifting waxes the sky is the limit!

Would you rather pay 500 plus dollars for metallic color shifting boots or make your own?

Just look at these side by side. Both boots are fabulous (in my opinion) but I personally cannot drop 500 bucks on boots in this economy. I will however drop 25 bucks for vintage leather cowboy boots at my local Value Village and invest in products I can use over ad over again!

Here's a supply list to get you started

How to get started Painting yer Leather Boots

Choosing your boots

First off, they don't need to be leather. Pleather is fine as long as the surface is in good condition.

Canvas can work as well but you'll need  paint them first.

Cleaning Yer Boots

I always start with my favorite cleaning solution First Step Prep. This solution is a magic potion that not only cleans off ALL the oils but etches any surface to guarantee adherence. Use a rag or even better s scrubby sponge to really dig into the whole surface. No need to rinse. Just wipe and let dry. You should see a matte surface at this point.

To Paint or not to Paint

If your boots are already a dark color, AND you got the surface matte and not shiny you really dont need to paint your boots first. The wax needs something to adhere to and paint is best but if your boots are already dark and scuffed you are good to go!

But Sue, What if I want a light colored boot?

I hear ya girl. Not everyone rocks the black. You can absolutely use different colors and even white. You'll just need to do a bit of experimenting with your chosen wax against your chosen colors. I think the original Shifters like Crystal Ball that have an almost clear base work well on lighter colors.

You just want to match the color base to the color of your paint so you hide the shifter strokes. 

If I were using a light blue paint I might use Jester or tempest because they have a blue base. 

Here's a video where you can see the original Sue-per Shifters over white

Painting yer Boots

If you decide to paint your boots I always use Miss Lillian's Original Chock Paints. Onyx is the perfect black if you are going that way.

The reason these paints work so well is because the topcoat is already built into the paint. The paint gives the wax something to grab onto but the topcoat allows the paint to spread around nicely.

If you are using other clay based paints make sure to seal them first before applying the wax or else it can get clumpy.

Paint as you would normally and once the paint is dry you are ready to begin!

Choosing your Tanglewood Sue-per Shifting Wax Color

If you are having trouble choosing your fave color or colors I have 2 options for you.

First is my website is now sortable by color. You can look at all the blues or pinks together.

The only issue with this is that you can only sort by one color and all my shifters have multiple colors.

For this reason I created a fully sortable color guide with videos too. 

Applying the wax

Anything goes really. Test out your brushes to see which ones spread the wax the best for you.

If you are getting streaks, your brush may be too stiff.

You want it stiff enough to spread but soft enough to create a nice blend.

Yes you can use your fingers but this is a solvent based product so be sure to wash your hands well and dont eat or drink while using. 


Don't try to get full coverage on the first pass. You want to spread it around as far as the wax will spread. Just like you would on furniture. You can always buff it and add another layer.

The exceptions to this is if you are using chromes. Chromes are gonna give you full coverage on the first pass. Just make sure you get a smooth application.

Sealing yer Boots

So if you are like me and you want to be able to change up your boot colors with the season I would recommend just buffing the wax with a soft buffing brush or clean dry cloth.

Just wait about half and hour after applying the wax and if you start buffing and no color comes off you are good to go.

As you buff you will see the wax get shinier as the wax hardens to form a protective barrier.

This is all I use on my boots and although they may get a little scuffed in places the wax stays on very nicely.

If you want to make sure the wax is permanant I recommend using Angelus leather sealant. This is a clear topcoat that is bendy so it will not crack and flake over time.

Changing up your Boot Colors

Now if you want to keep chaging the colors all you need to do is grab my Sue's Wicked Wax. Remember the Karate Kid (wax on wax off)? Yep wax removes wax so grab your wax brush and rub the clear wax into the shifting wax and then remove with a cloth or paper towel.

You should be able to get most of it off but dont worry if there's a little left behind. 

At this point you can go ahead and add a new color. Since the boots will have clear wax on them they may be a bit slippery and the wax will spread A LOT.

If you are not getting the look that you want jsut use the first step prep again to get a clean surface.

Watch me Switch Up My Boots

In Conclusion

I sure hope you had fun Tanglewood Sue-per Shifting your boots with me today!

Please send me pics of your fancy new boots. It thrills me to see all the creative ways you guys use my products.


Tanglewood Sue

I've created some Sampler Sets for you to get started

Tanglewood Sueper Shifted DIY leather Boots
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