Painting Fabric in 7 Easy Steps!

Shabby Paints
by Shabby Paints
8 Materials
2 Hours

How to Paint fabric using Chalk-Acrylic Paint, no fabric medium required. I've done several posts on painting fabric and every time I do it, I love it even more. This beautiful rocker looked great as is, but the fabric didn't match anything in my home.

Colors used: Painted the base with Americano and the fabric with Great Greige. I used Matte VAX to seal it. It might even get a stencil someday :)


  • Shabby Paints Chalk-Acrylic Paint
  • Water
  • Mister
  • Paint Brush
  • Sand Paper ( I use fine or med grit)
  • Painters Tape
  • Shabby Paints VAX (Matte or Satin)
  • VAX Applicator Sponge

Painting Fabric in 7 Easy Steps!

Got a great piece of furniture with fabric that just doesn't match your style? Paint it!

Step 1 Paint the frame.

Step 2 tape to protect your frame.

Step 3 Dilute your paint with water. I used a 60/40 Paint/water mixture. Use more water for thicker fabric.

Step 4 Once dry, mist and lightly sand.

Step 5 Paint with full strength paint.

Step 6 Once dry, mist and lightly sand.

Step 7 Apply a coat of Matte or Satin VAX with an applicator sponge.

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Frequently asked questions
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3 of 13 questions
  • Mary Mary on May 30, 2019

    What is vax?

  • Gail OBrien Gail OBrien on May 31, 2019

    Is this method water proff for outside use

  • Judy Kelly Judy Kelly on Jun 07, 2019

    I've asked this question before, but never got an answer. Can you paint over leather? I have a pale yellow, leather sofa that has faded in the seat, and a foot stool to match.

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5 of 31 comments
  • Repairladi Repairladi on May 24, 2019

    What great idea ! Years ago I used regular Ext paint on cloth patio chairs it was firmer but not crunch. ! Chalk paint and sanding great Idea .

    • See 2 previous
    • Repairladi Repairladi on May 31, 2019

      No too tell you the truth I didn't even think of a scotch guard ! I just didn't like the design for here in Arizona, so I had some burnt rust colored paint and decided to use it. It was way before I had all the chalk paints and wax to seal it . It was always under my back patio covered . grant you over time the heat work on deteriorates it. well nothing ventured nothing gained . Thanks for your reply as you see I don't check my email everyday. thanks again.

  • Dee Dee on May 30, 2019

    My favorite fabric is red and cream toile so I’d never paint it but there are other fabrics I’ve painted before. Works out fine!