Fabric Painting: How to Paint Upholstery
Do you have an old chair laying around with outdated upholstery? Don’t get rid of it yet; give it a fabulous new look with paint! Read on in this tutorial to learn our tips and tricks for how to get started with fabric painting.
Step 1) Shake, stir, and pour your paint
As always with painting, start by shaking your jar thoroughly, then opening it up and giving it a good stir. To avoid potentially contaminating your entire jar of paint, pour some off into a cup for use on your project.
Step 2) Tape the edges
If you’re painting just one area of your chair or there are accents that you wish to leave as is, use some painter’s tape to protect them.
Step 3) Spray with water
Before applying your paint, spray down the entire fabric surface with water. It doesn’t need to be soaking wet, just damp. This will help the paint spread more smoothly and help to avoid that crunchy feeling once it dries.
Step 4) Apply your first coat of paint
Before the water dries, begin applying your first coat of paint. Keep in mind that the tighter the fabric weave, the less the paint will soak into the fabric. If you find that the paint is drying too stiffly for your liking, there are fabric mediums on the market which you can mix in with the paint to help soften the feel.
We would advise against trying to paint a very loose weave fabric as it will require a lot of paint to get opaque coverage.
Step 5) Add more coats if needed
As you can see in the picture above, the paint will soak into the fabric while it dries. To achieve a more opaque look, give the first coat about 1 hour to dry, then apply a second coat.
Step 6) Seal with Natural Wax
This step is optional. If you want to add a little more protection or help soften the finish, apply a thin coat of Natural Wax and buff it dry.
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