Possible Issues With Shoe Dyeing
Getting shoes dyed has some shortcomings of which you should be aware. We don't want you to be disappointed or surprised by how your dyed shoes come out, so please take the time to read about the possible issues below.
Dyed shoes are not waterproof. Shoe dye is made from a water soluble base. This means that if a dyed shoe comes in contact with water, it is likely to run or bleed. The perspiration from your hands or feet might be enough to cause some dye from the shoe to rub off on your skin. It is not likely to rub off onto fabric (your gown) unless that fabric is wet. If you do end up with some color on your skin, it can be easily cleaned off with soap and water or even a cleaning wipe.
Glue marks: During the construction process, the sole of the shoe is glued to the rest of the shoe. Excess glue is wiped away, and the rest of the glue dries clear. The final product is a visually perfect shoe… until you try to dye it. The small areas at the seams where the glue might have gotten into the fabric will not absorb dye as readily as the rest of the shoes. These areas will appear a lighter shade of the dyed color or possibly even white. These areas are very narrow and not visible by others when the shoes are being worn. They ARE visible if you have the shoe in your hand and are holding it close.
Dye can appear on the inside of the shoes. There might be small areas inside the shoe where dye gets on the liner or behind the straps. On occasion, small parts of the sole may also come in contact with shoe dye. These parts are not seen by others and do not affect the performance of the shoe.
Only exposed areas of the shoes get dyed, not the inside.
Dye can be uneven over pleats, gathers, knots, and twists in the fabric. Areas of the shoe where the fabric is pleated, gathered, tied in a knot, or shaped into a flower or bow might absorb the dye unevenly at the folded edges and creases.
Scuffs and fabric flaws: Satin shoes that appear perfect before being dyed might show scuffs or minor fabric flaws once dyed. These areas might appear darker, lighter, shinier, or less shiny than the rest of the shoe. These areas tend to be small and aren't noticeable when being worn. We tried to take pictures of fabric scuffs, but they won't show in the pictures, so we can pretty much guarantee they won't show in your wedding pictures either!
Dye can't go everywhere. We try as much as possible to dye the parts of the shoe that are under a bow, flower, brooch, or other type of decoration. You might find that if you look under a bow or flower, the dyeing is not complete. Of course, these areas are never visible to others.
Leather cannot be dyed. Occasionally, shoes have a piece of leather reinforcement on the strap where the buckle holes are. Leather does not accept the dye as well as the satin and will appear a lighter shade of the dyed color.
Different fabrics dye differently. A color can vary between different shoe fabrics. For example, if you dye both a silk shoe and a satin shoe royal blue, the silk shoe will dye a lighter shade of royal blue.
Did you know you can have your shoes dyed or re-dyed after the wedding?
The bottom line: If you want to find something wrong with a dyed shoe and you look hard enough, you will find something. Dyeing a pair of shoes is a wonderful way to get the exact shoes you want in the color you want. If you go into the process with reasonable expectations, you will never be unhappy.