Easily Paint a Fabric Chair + DIY Paint Recipe

Missi Perez
by Missi Perez
5 Materials
Confession: a few weeks ago my neighbor had these dated yellowish-green chairs sitting out by the curb {gasp} how could she?! Being the crazy person that I am, I decided to drag them home where they sat on my patio longer than I am proud of. Anyway, today was the day I decided to jazz them up a bit and make them new again. Did you know you can easily paint a fabric chair? Yes, yes you can!
For right around $10 each, I was able to make these outdated chairs new again. Anyone can do this! Let's stop tossing things out and instead let's give new life to old items.
Be sure to clean the surface you want to paint throughly. Also, don't forget to tape off any areas you do not wish to paint (or drip paint on). Wear old clothes if you are a messy painter like me..

Use your spray bottle to lightly wet fabric until damp but be sure not to soak it.
Pour right around 20% water into a paint container or bowl, your paint and mix it well. Your paint & water mixture should be about the same consistency of a creamy soup.
Apply your paint mixture in thin, even coats. Allow each layer to fully dry before applying the next.
The thicker the fabric is, the more layers you made need to apply. If there are some spots that aren't as fully covered as others, just add other layer until paint is evenly coated all around.
Remember, this is not a dye, so of course the paint will feel different than your starting fabric. Your fabric will feel slightly firmer than the original but still perfectly functional and flexible. If you don't like the texture you can use sand paper to lightly sand the fabric. I did not to this with mine since I will be leaving my chairs outside.
You can choose to coat your painted fabric with a clear Wax Sealer if it's going to be exposed to a lot of wear and tear. I highly suggest using it if you are going to leave your fabric chair somewhere it will be exposed to the elements.
Resources for this project:
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Missi Perez
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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  2 questions
  • Pam Smith Pam Smith on Jun 12, 2016
    I have some green chairs I picked up too! I am so going to try this!! How many jars of paint did you use for one chair? I just bought the Waverly brand for a table I am doing and really liked it. Thanks for your help!

  • Bonnie482 Bonnie482 on Jul 20, 2016
    can I do this process on carpeting (stairs)?

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  • Hannah V Hannah V on Jun 13, 2016
    They look so good! I have a chair I want to do this to!

  • Shazza Shazza on May 14, 2020

    Hi there, I know that this was posted many moons ago, however, these days, many ladies are painting anything and everything and we are all using chalk paint for fabric painting... it’s just way better!!!! Google it and you will be amazed... just an opinion......