DIY: Kenzo-Inspired Embellished Heels

August 14, 2013

Before I get to the DIY, I have a really good back story & inspiration for this awesome project I came up with.  I know many of you read that I attended Go Blog Social a few weeks ago. The keynote speaker was Corri McFadden, founder of eDrop-Off Luxury Consignment. She is a midwest girl & quite the badass entrepreneur. Yes, her keynote was amazing! She also wore these Kenzo embellished sandals. I could not. stop. staring. at her shoes! The entire time! I was so obsessed with these jeweled heels that I hunted them down on the internet. See Corri rocking them here and here. Once I saw the price tag, I knew my wallet would be pretty thin if I purchased the exact same pair.

Therefore, I decided that with a little bit of love, fantastic inspiration and a lot of super glue, I could add my own twist and make these heels mine! I could not be happier with the end result. These embellished sandals are my very own art piece. Now, without further ado, here is the DIY!
Gemstones (I purchased one large bag of mixed shapes, colors & sizes)
Super Glue Gel (works great on leather)

Finding the heels for this project was difficult. I wanted to emulate the style of the original Kenzo pair but also do something a bit different. One of my favorite parts of the original shoe was the chunky heel, and obviously, the gorgeous black leather. Once I saw these Calvin Klein Black Leather Heels, I knew they would be perfect. The offered enough space to add a lot of embellishment and I love the unique style.

First, I dumped out my giant bag of gemstones and found an assortment of shapes and sizes that I liked. I made sure each had a match (one for each shoe) so that the pattern would be symmetrical. Once I established which ones I was going to use, I got to painting. 

I chose to keep to the same color scheme as the original pair; red, white, blue and pink. Painting these stones with nail polish is not a breeze... it takes some patience and precision to get them looking right. I did a second coat of nail polish on a lot of them so they would have the lacquered look. (Hint: it helps to have gel/shellac nails when doing this project, then its easy to wipe nail polish remover over your hands, because the polish will get everywhere)!
Once I had all of my painted pairs of gemstones dry, I began messing with the placement and designing a pattern to place on the front area of the heels. There is no real secret to the placement, I just hand glued each jewel on, one at a time. I went back and forth between each shoe one by one. This was definitely the most scary part (super gluing jewels on to a really nice pair of leather heels is nerve-wracking!), and yes, I almost super glued my fingers together more than once. 

It was all worth it though, because I am blown away at how these shoes turned out! I know they are not the exact same heel as the Kenzo pair, but I love that I was able to put my own twist on a look that I absolutely love!
I only wish I was half as stylish as Corri, but at least I have some pretty amazing heels! What do you think of this project? Do you like my take or would you rather have the Kenzo pair? I am dying to get your feedback, so please let me know in the comments!

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  1. I'M OBSESSED with these! Haha we were staring at her & Meg's shoes the entire time before they started speaking. Your DIY turned out perfectly; I'll have to start hunting for a pair that I can try it on :)

    1. How good did these turn out??! I am so obsessed. Now I have to decide whether to display them on a shelf or wear them!

  2. These turned out so well! You are doing all my DIYS! haha

    1. Send me that necklace and I will do it up for you! :)

  3. Look at you getting all crafty :) They turned out great! Such an awesome idea!

    XO, Alison

  4. Oh, I LOVE THESE! I've already started my shoe hunt to make my own pair.

  5. These are amazing! You are so talented. I love it!

    Thanks for linking up with Style Sessions!

    Lauren xx

  6. Wow! Those look fantastic! Very creative and even cuter than the original ones!

  7. These turned out so good! NEED!

    xx Cara

  8. You are amazing! These are amazing! Job well done!

  9. These look like the real thing! Love!
    Thanks for linking up!