How to Make Stunning Alexander Wang-Inspired Heels For $25

The DIY Designer
by The DIY Designer
5 Materials
2 Hours

This easy, inexpensive way to create your own DIY Alexander Wang-inspired heels will make you want to dance! You can use a pair of heels you already own to make these crystal sandal “Julie” heels., which usually retail at $850.

If you don’t have a pair of black heels, don’t worry. This DIY designer heels dupe will look great in any color. The only thing you might need to buy is some crystal mesh fabric. Ready? Let’s start!

Tools and materials:

  • One pair of high-heeled sandals
  • Crystal mesh fabric
  • E6000 glue
  • Sewing needle and thread
  • Scissors
Cutting strips of crystal mesh fabric

1. Make crystal mesh straps

Cut a strip of crystal mesh fabric for each shoe. Each strip should be just a little wider than the strap on the front top of your shoe.

The length of the crystal mesh strip should be 1½ times the length of the strap. That will allow you to get a scrunched look on your strap.

Tip: get a clean cut on the crystal mesh by cutting between the crystals.

Applying glue to the bottom of the shoe strap

Put a thin line of E6000 glue at the bottom of the outer side of your shoe strap, right where the edge of the shoe meets the sole. 

Lay the crystal mesh on the glue

Lay one short edge of the crystal mesh on the glue. Use your fingers to ensure it’s nice and smooth. Do the same on the other shoe and then leave them for a half-hour to dry and set.

Hand-sewing the crystal mesh to the strap

2. Attach the crystal to your shoe strap

Use a needle and thread and begin at the glued edge of the strap. Hand-sew the crystal mesh to the strap for about 1 to 1½ inches.

Don’t make these stitches right at the edge of the mesh fabric – sew about a quarter of the way up from the edge.

Gathering the crystal mesh fabric

Now you need to start gathering the crystal mesh. To make the gathers or pleats, pinch together some of the crystal mesh fabric.

Pass your needle through both layers of mesh and then down through your shoe strap. That makes one pleat and attaches the mesh to the strap at the same time. 

Making pleats with the crystal mesh

Start with making a couple of small pleats then make each pleat a bit taller until you get to the middle of the strap.

Decrease the height of the pleats as you do the second half of the strap so you end up with an arch of crystal mesh. Sew the last 1-1½ inches with no pleats.

Cutting the edge of the crystal mesh strip

When you reach the inside edge of the strap, cut off the excess mesh fabric.

Do not make this cut on an angle, even though that looks like it would be right, because cutting the mesh on an angle will make crystals fall off.

Gluing the edge to the strap

Glue the crystal mesh to the inside edge of the strap the same way you did for the outer edge.

How to make your own Alexander Wang Julie heels

Now, gather the pleats, manipulating them just the way you want it to look, and attach the crystal mesh to the shoe on the other long edge.

Making the second shoe the same as the first

Repeat the application of the crystal mesh on your other shoe, checking as you go to make sure the pleating on the second shoe is a mirror image of the first shoe.

Adding crystal mesh fabric to the back of the heel

3. Adorn the back of the heel

Really, I adorned the back of the heel to cover a scuff mark! Apply glue and a small piece of crystal mesh at the back of the heel.

If you prefer, you can find a matching bow and add that to the back of the heel instead.

Alexander Wang heels dupe

4. Another way to cover the shoe strap

The crystal mesh is very dressy, and if that’s not your style, you can use a plain mesh fabric that isn’t crystal. You could scrunch and gather it like before, or you could lay it flat on the strap.

Alexander Wang-inspired heels

Alexander Wang-inspired heels

Although I used crystal mesh, you could use other materials to cover your straps. Think about velvet, lamé, or sequins. That scrunchy pleated look can be achieved with any scrap fabric that you own.

DIY Alexander Wang Julie crystal sandal

Enjoy your Alexander Wang-inspired “Julie” heels and let me know in the comments how you liked this DIY designer heels dupe.

Suggested materials:
  • One pair of high-heeled sandals
  • Crystal mesh fabric
  • E6000 glue
See all materials

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