Huh. No matter how many times I look at it, all I can do is sigh.
Red Wing’s Gold Russet Setter 9875, which suffered a major setback in the last maintenance.
As I tried to cover up the smallest of injuries, the damage snowballed into this. To be honest, I still think it was best not to do anything.
However, I could not leave it as it was, and finally made up my mind to “dye it black”.
I believe it can’t get any worse, but we’ll see what happens…
Prepared for re-dyeing
Since I had been interested in dyeing for some time, I was not particularly perplexed by what to prepare and was able to gather it easily.
First, the acetone on the left in the photo. I could not get it at a regular home improvement store, so I bought 500 ml at a commercial home improvement store.
Acetone is used to remove color and degrease leather.
I wasn’t sure how much was needed, but in the end, about half was enough to remove the color from one pair of boots.
On the right in the photo is “Spiran,” which also appeared in the previous issue. This time in black. It is an alcohol-based dye that penetrates into degreased leather and dyes it. It is rumored to produce a more natural finish than pigment-based dyes.
I also bought a paintbrush and a small plate. All in all, it cost me less than 2,000 yen, but it’s a small price to pay when my boots come back to life.
Preparation is important before brushwork!
We will start with decoloring and degreasing the leather immediately. My favorite gold russet will be seen no more today. We promised to grow old together…sorry to be such an owner.
I soak a used towel with a lot of acetone and scrub it.
Acetone is toxic, so use a well-ventilated area. Use rubber gloves if possible.
By the way, I was in a hurry, so I didn’t take many pictures.
At first, I was scared to do it, but I heard that it is better to scrub so hard that you can see the raw hides, so I scrubbed with all my might.
This process is very important to ensure that the color will come out beautifully, so be very careful. Be especially careful with the base of the feathers and around the lace stays, as you cannot bleach the color well if you are not conscious of the details.
I scrubbed for about an hour. My arms are so sore…
The color has faded by one step, and it looks dry and parched. Is this what it looks like?
Brushstrokes! Masking tape for areas you don’t want to color.
I thought about going all black, but since I was going to go all out, I decided to keep the dark brown topline as an accent.
The welt and stitching were also protected with masking tape along with the piping areas to prevent them from being dyed black.
I borrowed the masking tape from my wife, but I didn’t expect it to be floral. It turned out to be a very cute boots.
Finally, it’s time to add color with “Spiran.”
I started from the “base of the feather” which is hard to dye, and the “toe” and “heel” which are under tension.
I was in such a hurry that I didn’t take any pictures of the work in progress.
Here is the finished product.
The entire area was painted over about four times.
Excellent quick-drying performance makes layering smoother than expected.
At first I was just worried because I could see the gold undercoat, but as I applied more and more coats, it turned out to be black in one way or another.
But it’s not completely black, but you can see a faint undercoat…
Perhaps I should have done a better job of decolorizing with acetone.
Finish with shoe cream.
After about two hours, it was completely dry, so I removed the masking tape and brought it into the room.
The leather is ridiculously dry. The color seems more like dark gray than pitch black.
In the meantime, hydrate with a delicate cream to the point of chattering.
Only the left photo (right foot) is after delicate cream supplementation.
The texture has improved overwhelmingly. The unevenness of the color has also been reduced, and it is clear in the photo that the color has become closer to black.
Well, degreasing with acetone and coloring with alcohol dyes should, by all accounts, be drying all over the place.
But still, this is the first time that a delicate cream has changed the look so much. Or rather, it was the first time I felt the effect.
The finish will be Coronil Supreme Cream.
The most important issue this time is to get the nutrients in anyway. Apply it thoroughly to both legs and brush with a synthetic fiber brush. The luster will come out in no time at all.
Putting the laces through…
The wonderful luster has returned.
Naturally, there were no scratches or stains on the toe. At least it’s a relief that it dyed beautifully.
You were right to leave the brown on the welt and piping. Together with the brown of the laces, it keeps the balance of the color, which is not too heavy.
I tried them on right away and I knew the black would tighten them up.
This is… Cool!
Repair of small parts
I was very pleased with the overall workmanship, but upon closer inspection, there were a few areas that were not fully dyed.
It seems that the areas where the parts were intricate were not well decolorized with acetone.
The same process was repeated as before, using cotton swabs to bleach the color again, and then using Spilan to make up the color.
Here is the finished product with delicate cream and shoe cream applied.
It is much better than before. If I do any more, I’m going to get hurt again, so I’m done with this!
Time to try it on again.
I paired it with APC’s thin denim.
The silhouette is chunky, but the change in color gives it a much sleeker look.
I think it is fair to say that this is a successful counterattack.
I am relieved from the bottom of my heart that I managed to keep them from being trashed, but the shock of losing the beauty of the gold russet is still immeasurable.
I will continue to finish this reborn shoe with a colorless cream.
It will be even cooler when the gold color eventually starts to show through the scratches and wrinkles.
…It’s fun to imagine.
We are still going to be together for a long time. Best regards, buddy!
Lastly, I would like to say goodbye with my favorite image before the dye job. See you soon.