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Create What You Can't Have: Best Custom Projects (September 2020)

Creating your own custom projects is the best way to get your hands on the sneakers and accessories that match your personal style. Whether you're after an AF1 colorway that doesn't exist, or you have a dream designer collab in mind, making it yourself is often the only way to get it done.

With that in mind, check out some of our favorite customs from this month below to get some inspiration for your next big project.

Custom Barstool

While a lot of artists stick to sneakers, you can customize almost anything as long as it's made up of the right materials.

Sponsored artist @swellguycustoms stopped by earlier this month to create a tutorial showcasing how you can use Angelus paints to customize a faux leather barstool, and you can apply these techniques to pretty much any faux leather product.

Check out the full tutorial to see the tools and techniques you can use to recreate this unique project.

Jordan x Dior Custom Cleats

(source: @truebluecustoms)

Miss out on the Jordan 1 x Dior collaboration that dropped earlier this year?

This was one of the biggest collabs in recent history, but it was almost impossible to get your hands on. Fortunately, though, you can always recreate it for yourself.

Sponsored artist @truebluecustoms designed these custom cleats, featuring many of the same details from the original Jordan x Dior collab, including Dior-branded Swooshes, Air Dior branding, and a clean grey and white colorway.

Black Panther Balenciaga Runners

(source: @danielcordas)

With roles like the Black Panther and Jackie Robinson, Chadwick Boseman was a brilliant artist who inspired millions of people around the world.

To pay tribute to the late actor, sponsored artist @danielcordas designed these custom Balenciaga Runners, featuring an incredible illustration of one Chadwick Boseman's most iconic characters -- the Black Panther.

Halloween Custom Vans

(source: @lucha_loafers)

October is right around the corner, meaning now is a great time to start getting your Halloween customs ready.

Sponsored artist @lucha_loafers painted these custom Vans Slip-Ons, featuring some of the most recognizable villains of all time, from Hannibal Lecter to Freddy Krueger.

Cactus Jack Air Force 1

(source: @jaygotkustoms)

The Cactus Jack x McDonald's crossover is one of the weirder collabs we've seen yet, but that didn't stop the hype beasts from swarming McDonald's for a regular cheeseburger.

One good thing to come from this collab is this pair of custom Air Force 1s designed by @jaygotkustoms. These customs feature McDonald's x Travis Scott branding and a clean yellow, white, and brown color scheme to match the theme.

To see more great customs like this, make sure to follow Angelus on Instagram, and grab the materials you need for your next project from our online store.

The BEST Brushes for Cleaning Your Sneakers

There are plenty of effective sneaker cleaners out there. But how much of a difference does the cleaner actually make?

While it's important to have an effective cleaner that won't damage your shoe, in some cases, the real difference maker is the brush.

That's why we had @sneakerheadinthebay stop by to create a video explaining how to tackle a dirty pair of sneakers and which type of brush is best for the job. Read below to learn the key points, and make sure to check out the full video on our YouTube channel.

Types of Brushes

There are a few different types of brushes that should each be used for different purposes and materials.

Horsehair brush

First, is the horsehair brush. Horsehair brushes have very soft bristles that are used mostly for brushing off any excess dirt or dust from your shoes before you start cleaning.

If your shoes are super dirty or muddy, hitting them with the horsehair brush first will make cleaning them a lot easier.

All-Purpose brush

The all-purpose brush is perfect for most uses and is the best way to clean your sneakers while using Angelus Easy Cleaner.

With bristles soft enough for suede but strong enough to scrub off dirt and grime, the all-purpose brush can be used on nearly any material without damaging it.

Suede brush

The nylon bristle brush, which comes in our Nubuck & Suede Set, has tough bristles that are used to reset the nap in your suede after being cleaned and dried.

The Angelus Nubuck & Suede Set also removes most soil and spots on suede and nubuck. 

All-Purpose Foam Cleaner

Lastly, we have the brush that comes with our All-Purpose Foam Cleaner.

This brush features very hard bristles that are perfect for outsoles and midsoles. If you're having trouble getting rid of dirt and grime no matter how much scrubbing you do, this cleaner and brush combo is your best bet.

More Cleaning Essentials

Easy Cleaner

Finding the right brush is essential for cleaning your sneakers correctly, but to make sure they stay in good shape, you might want to grab a few of these other sneaker care essentials:

  • Easy Cleaner: a premium shoe cleaner that's safe for all materials
  • Mink Oil: a premium conditioner that prevents stains and extends the life of your shoes
  • Foaming Cleaner: a foaming cleaner that uses a pump for easy application and is perfect for most materials
  • Sole Bright: a solution that completely reverses oxidation to bring your soles back to life
  • Deoderizer: a scent-free formula that completely eliminates all odors from your shoes

These basic essentials will make sure you have everything you need to keep your sneakers in factory condition.

For more product drops, tips, and customs, make sure to follow Angelus on Instagram, and don't forget to check out our website to grab the materials you need to take care of your customs.

What's the Best Way to Clean Your Sneakers?

Unless you just leave your shoes in the closet forever, they're going to get dirty, so it's important to know how to clean them in keep them in factory condition.

Depending on the shoe's material and what type of damage there is, you may need to use a few different products to fully restore them.

Read below to learn the best ways to clean your sneakers, no matter how dirty or damaged they've become.

Best Cleaning Products for Different Situations

Whether you're looking for an all-purpose cleaner to use on all of your customs or you need something to get those stubborn stains out, we've got you covered.

Check out the list below to learn which Angelus cleaning products are best for specific uses.

Angelus Easy Cleaner

Angelus Easy Cleaner is a perfect all-purpose deep cleaner that you can use on just about any material.

Angelus Easy Cleaner

Whenever your shoes get dirty, just pour some Easy Cleaner into a bowl, dip a scrubbing brush into the solution, and scrub away any dirt and grime on the shoe.

Afterward, use a cloth to wipe away the cleaner and leftover dirt, and your shoe should be as good as new.

Foam-Tex Gentle Foaming Cleaner

If you're looking for an even easier way to clean your sneakers or a way to keep your shoes clean when you're on the go, Angelus Foam-Tex cleaner is the perfect solution.

Foam-Tex

Foam-Tex comes in a  pump bottle for easy application, so if you step into a puddle or get some mud on your shoe, just pump some cleaner directly on to the shoe, scrub with a cleaning brush, and wipe clean.

All-Purpose Foam Cleaner

If your shoes are really dirty and you're not able to scrub out those old stains, you might need something a little bit stronger to get the job done.

All-Purpose Foam Cleaner

To get those deep dirt stains out, apply some All-Purpose Foam Cleaner to the shoe, and use the built-in scrubbing cap to get rid of the grime buried in the shoe.

Once you're done scrubbing, use a clean cloth to wipe away any leftover dirt and you're good to go.

Deodorizer

If you wear your customs every day, they're inevitably going to build up a little bit of a stink -- there's no way around it.

Deodorizer

Unlike other products, Angelus Deodorizer doesn’t just mask odors, it eliminates them altogether.

Just spray some of this scent-free formula into your shoes and let them air dry for 24 hours.

Can You Use Cleaning Products on Customs?

One of the most common questions we get is, "Can I use cleaning products on my custom shoes?"

Short answer: Yes.

Angelus paints are water-proof, and as long as you prep and finish it properly, it should hold up against any water, dirt, or Angelus cleaning products.

If you want to check out how you can use Angelus products, make sure to follow us on Instagram to see some amazing customs and tutorials.

How to Customize Boxing Gloves

In order to continue creating amazing customs, it's important to continue learning new techniques and ways to create unique designs. To help you do this, we have a large collection of tutorials over on our YouTube channel -- each offering new tips, tricks, and techniques for painting customs.

For this week's tutorial, Austin (also known as @jarcustoms) was nice enough to stop by the studio to teach you how to create a custom pair of boxing gloves. Customizing a pair of boxing gloves has been on our list for a while now so we're super excited to have final knock these out.

Keep reading to see how you can create these The Simpsons-inspired boxing gloves for yourself.

Leather Preparer & Deglazer

Just like customizing a pair of sneakers, you're going to want to start by preparing the leather on your boxing gloves. Otherwise, the paint will not adhere effectively to the surface. Prepping it will help avoid chipping and peeling after you're done.

To prep the gloves, use a cotton pad to apply an even layer of Leather Preparer and Deglazer to any area that you plan to paint.

Tape

After applying the Leather Preparer and Deglazer, you can use masking tape to tape off the bottom section of the gloves.

By using masking tape and paper towels to separate the bottom and the top of the gloves, you can prevent paint from dripping down into unwanted areas.

Airbrush

Once the gloves are prepared, it's time to start painting.

For this project, Austin started by using an airbrush with a mixture of paint and 2-Thin to paint over the wrist section. Since the wrist section is black, start with a layer of gray paint, then light gray, before finally moving on to white. This will make sure the base is completely covered.

Apply two to three coats of each color, and let each layer completely dry before applying another.

Airbrush

Next, Austin used a mixture of light blue, white, blue, and 2-Thin to create a sky blue base for the wrist section.

Again, be sure to apply multiple light coats and allow each coat to completely dry before applying another.

Paintbrush

Next, it's time to move on from the airbrush and start painting your design.

For this project, Austin painted the wrist section to mimic the classing The Simpsons opening sequence. He also used a custom Everlast stencil to finish off the section.

Of course, if you want to paint a different design, you don't have to stick with the same theme.

*Note: For that classic The Simpsons yellow, use a 60/40 mixture of yellow and maize paint.

Stencil

Now, it's time to transfer your design to the top portion of the glove. To do this, Austin made custom stencils to easily transfer his sketch over to the gloves.

To make a quick custom stencil, place masking tape over a section of your sketch, use a pencil to sketch the outline of your design, then use a detail knife to cut out the stencil.

Using the Stencil

To use the stencil, simply tape it on to the glove, and use your airbrush to fill it in with a flat white base coat.

Then, use a brush to fill in all of the finer details in the stencil. You can repeat this step as many times as necessary to complete the rest of your design.

Acrylic Finisher

Lastly, once you've finished painting your design, use an airbrush to apply a final layer of Matte Acrylic Finisher.

This acrylic finisher will act as a clear protective top coat to protect the gloves from minor scuffs and scratches.

Once the finisher dries, your gloves are done and ready to go.

Custom Boxing Gloves

For a more detailed walkthrough on how to create these custom boxing gloves, make sure to check out the full tutorial on our YouTube channel.

Don't forget to follow Angelus on Instagram, and make sure to check out our online store to grab the products you need for your next project.

How to Customize Your Nintendo Switch Case

DIY: Super Mario Custom Nintendo Switch Travel Case | Angelus Paint

Angelus paints can be used for a lot more than customizing a pair of sneakers. From clothes to furniture to accessories, you can customize nearly anything with the right tools.

To show you how flexible our paints and other products can be, Andrea (@10andrea26) stopped by the Angelus studio to show you how to create a custom Super Mario Nintendo Switch case.

Keep reading for a quick walkthrough, and make sure to check out the full tutorial on our YouTube channel for more detailed instructions.

2-Soft

Since Nintendo Switch cases are made of a soft, mesh-like material, you're going to need to mix your paint of choice with Angelus 2-Soft before applying your base coat. Mix 2-Soft with your paint at a 1:1 ratio for best results. For this project, Andrea used Cream for the base coat.

Apply several coats to make sure the case is evenly covered, then use a heat gun at 300º F for 3-5 minutes to set the base coat.

Flat White Paint

After the 2-Soft mixture is set, go ahead and apply a new layer of Flat White paint. For this coat, you don't need any 2-Soft as the base coat will serve as a good foundation for the rest of your paint.

Sketch Your Design

Next, before you start painting, it's always a good idea to sketch out your design on the case using a pen or sketching pencils.

Free-hand painting is, of course, always an option, but it's more difficult to correct mistakes once the paint is already on the case.

Paint Your Design

Next, it's time to start painting your design. For this project, Andrea decided to do a Super Mario-themed custom, but you can paint any design you want.

If you want to try to replicate this design, you'll need to pick up some Green, Light Green, Turquoise, Grey, Red, Yellow, and Blue paint (you can grab a 12 color assortment kit to get all the colors you need for this project).

Paint Marker

To add the outline to your design, combine Flat Black paint with Angelus 2-Thin in a 1:1 ratio and pour the mixture into a paint marker. 2-Thin will help the paint flow seamlessly through the marker so that there aren't any breaks in your outline.

Once your mixture is ready to go, you can use the paint marker to add all of the finer details to your design.

High Gloss Finisher

Lastly, apply a layer of our High Gloss Acrylic Finisher to give the case a nice, clean, glossy finish. After the finisher sets, your custom case is finished and ready to take on the road.

Finished Case

Once again, make sure to check out the full tutorial on our YouTube channel for a more detailed walkthrough and check out Andrea's Instagram to see more of her great custom projects.

And don't forget to follow Angelus on Instagram and check out our online store to grab the materials you need to create your next project.

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