Ever wondered about shrinking your shoes? Yes, you heard it right; you can shrink your favorite shoes, which have gotten loose, or you bought them in the wrong size. It all started with that one time when I spotted a beautiful pair of shoes which were unfortunately not available in my size. But they were so pretty to give up on. However, I brought them home and searched for different tricks to make my new near-to-heart shoes fit my feet. In this article, I have listed all these tricks to help you with your favorite loose leather shoes.
Can We Shrink Leather Shoes?
Shrinking leather is possible, although it is a little difficult to do so, but you can achieve the result by following the tricks rightly. You can use several methods to help shrink your shoes up to one size or half a size. Apart from this, it might not be possible to shrink it to a large extent. For instance, if your shoes are 3 to 4 sizes bigger than your actual shoes, then, unfortunately, you have to give up on your shoes. Shrinking leather jackets and clothes or gloves is easier. Shrinking leather shoes is comparatively challenging. The methods themselves are not that hard to follow. But, you need to be extra careful so that you don’t damage your shoes’ material as leather is considered a very sensitive material.
How To Shrink Leather Shoes
So these are the methods you need to follow if you’re like me who has found a perfect pair of shoes in a thrift store and they don’t fit you, or the same way you have seen an amazing deal on an item of shoes in the sale, but they don’t have your size.
1. Shrinking With Water And Sunlight
Shrinking your leather shoes with water is very easy, but you need to be highly cautious as water can easily damage leather’s texture and leave stains. You dampen it too much; it gets stiff later on, then cracks and ruins your entire shoes. That is why try to be gentle and careful while applying water to your shoes. If you do not want to take risks, you can apply a leather protector before applying water. There are varieties of leather protectors present in the market which you can easily get.
Never apply too much water; it is recommended to use a spray bottle and spray that area of the shoes lightly where you want to get them tight. You can preferably use your fingers too to slightly damp the surface of your shoes. After applying the water next, you have to place your shoes in sunlight. Now in this step too, be careful as too much heat can also ruin the leather. Do not leave them for a longer time in the scorching sun.
It’s better that you place it near your windowsill where there is sunlight, or even if your place them outside, take them back in after few hours. This process is slower, and it takes a little longer, but it works perfectly. Try on your shoes after the treatment, and you will feel them fit and snug around your feet.
2. Shrinking With A Dryer
If there isn’t adequate sunlight available to shrink your shoes, don’t worry. There is a substitute for this method. You can use a blow dryer or other dryers for this purpose. This method is faster and is in your control. Dampen the area of the shoes you want to shrink. Keep your dryer at the lowest temperature as you already know the higher temperature is not good for leather. The next step is to hold your dryer directed towards the shoes. Keep it six inches(15 cm) away from your shoes. Dry your shoes from this distance.
If you don’t see the result repeat this process by damping the shoes again and drying them afterward with the dryer. This process depends on the thickness of your shoes as well. You might have to repeat the process several times, depending on the thickness of the shoes.
It is necessary to treat your shoes with a leather conditioner after the heat treatment as it makes the shoes stiff and cracks. Apply the leather conditioner on the surface of the shoes with a clean cotton pad; this will pack the surface of your shoes and protect them from any damage. Let the conditioner dry off, and your shoes are snug and secure after all the procedures. However, ensure to use the right conditioner according to your shoe’s leather type; read the precaution before applying it for safety. Moreover, protect your shoes from crease formation with these best crease protectors reviewed.
3. Sewing A Band To The Shoes
Another alternate method that works is sewing an elastic band to the heel of the shoes. You can follow this method if your shoes are thin as it is easy to sew on thin material than thick ones. Take a small piece of an elastic band, secure it on one end of the shoe heel, stretch it all over to the other end, and pin it too. Take a needle and stitch it to the shoe’s material. If your shoes are very large, you can merge both methods as well. First, treat it with water and heat and sew the elastic band afterward for better results. Also you can repair your shoes with these best shoe glues available.
Wrapping It Up
Shrinking shoes to make them fit your feet size sounds challenging. You always want a solution to prevent your shoes from slipping out of your feet with every step because, with time, leather leaves space and expands. After reading this article, you will find different methods to bring your loose shoes to your feet size. However, if you still do not get satisfactory results after trying out the water, heat, and elastic band tricks, you can insert a piece of cotton in front of your shoes or use double insole additionally. Otherwise, there is always a professional cobbler available in every town who can make your work easier.