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How to Make Ankara Shoes: 5 Simple DIY Tips

The Ankara fabric is a gift to Africans as a whole. Its versalility makes it a necessity for every wardrobe. If you think wearing the fabric as clothes is its only purpose, then you’ve been wrong all along. From clothing to accessories, the purpose of this African print keeps evolving every day. Even now, fashionistas who know how to make Ankara shoes are making us see more and more reasons to keep buying the fabric.

ankara heels shoe


It is no longer news that you don’t have to wear Ankara as clothes before you wear the fabric. If you know how to make Ankara earrings or how to make Ankara slippers, you can don this print as an accessory. Imagine pepping up your sneakers, flats and heels with this fabric and turning up at occasions? You can only command attention better!

ankara shoes

But there’s only one way to achieve this and that’s to learn how to make Ankara shoes. This way you display your creativity and stylishness at the same time for the world to see.

How to Make Ankara Shoes

lady wearing ankara pencil heels

Materials needed

  • Ankara Fabric
  • Fabric glue (never use super glue)
  • A pair of shoes
  • Scissors
  • Knife
  • Razor 
  • Pencil

Steps on How to Make Ankara Shoes

1. Clean the Surface of Your Shoes

Since you’ll be gluing the fabric to your shoes, it is important that you clean the surface of your shoes properly. Use a piece of rag to wipe the surface clean, making sure to remove anything that will mar the look of your shoes when you are done.

2. Measure Your Fabrics

Measure and cut a piece of fabric you’d use in decorating your shoes. Be caeful when cutting for the second feet so your shoes have the same pattern, especially at the front part, to make them identical.

3. Apply Glue on Your Shoes and Attach Fabric

Apply the fabric glue on your shoes and attach your fabric. When applying glue, do so in moderation. That is, it shouldn’t be too much and it shouldn’t be too small.

Endeavour to press the fabric closely on your shoes so the glue is evenly distributed. You may decide to start with the front part of the shoes or you start with the back. If you want, you can as well add the fabric to the shoe soles too. Note that you may not be able to use just one piece of fabric to cover every part of the shoe. This means you have to cut and paste the fabric neatly on the shoes. Just be careful enough to make it smooth and clean.

Furthermore, while gluing the fabric to your shoes, make sure you cover every part of the shoe that you want to cover with your fabric. Pay attention to the opening between the soles and the body of your shoes. If the fabric doesn’t fit into that place, use your fingers or a flat object to ensure it goes right in so you can have a neat job.

4. Cut Off Excess Fabrics

When cutting off the edges, leave a tiny part so you can fit into cracks in your shoes. Tuck them into openings in the shoe as it looks better this way.

5. Allow Shoes Get Dry

Before proceeding to rock your shoes, let them air dry first. This way you are rest assured the fabric is properly glued to the shoes and won’t pull out mistakenly.

lady wearing ankara derby shoes

It is advisable you do both feet at the same time to achieve uniformity. This is because you may not be able to get the exact pattern you used on the right foot for the left foot. To avoid this, as you cut for one foot, cut for the other and attach too. This way, you’ll be able to compare both sides to ensure there’s an identical relationship between both.

The steps above are quite are simple. Once you’re started, you’d be motivated till you’re finished. However, to ease your understanding of this DIY, watch the video below and get a visual tip on how to make Ankara shoes.

How to Rock Ankara Shoes

lady rocking ankara suit and ankara shoes

After learning how to make Ankara shoes, your next worry is to rock it. To do so isn’t difficult as the footwear can be paired with any casual or formal outfit to make you look stylish. Not forgetting to add the necessary accessories like anklets, bracelets, earrings and sunglasses to garnish your look.

However, Ankara shoes can be selective of clothes because most of the time, they are usually multicoloured. Hence, to be on the safer side, pair your shoes with neutral coloured outfits such as black, white, grey, brown, beige, etc.

No matter your outfit, donning a pair of these shoes with African print is a sure way to look Afro-urban with little or no effort.

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Nelly Henshaw

Nelly Henshaw is an Applied Criminology and Sociology Graduate working in Youth Justice Service who equally shares a passion for personal wellbeing and everything to do with Lifestyle such as, Food, Travel, Art, Fashion, Hair and Beauty. She lives in London, UK.

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