5 Tips Before Using Latex Paint on Upholstery

latex paint on upholsteryThere are a lot of different methods to painting fabric or upholstery.  Painting a rug, or a chair or old patio furniture is a great way to up-cycle used furniture!  It’s also a great way to add spark to your home, with less money.  You can paint upholstery with fabric paint, or acrylic paints, or even latex paint.  Each method is slightly different, and you will want to know a few things, before you decide how to paint your upholstery.

For latex paint, consider the following before you start:

1. Fabric Medium- When using latex paint for your upholstery, it is important to use a fabric or textile medium.  Dilute the paint using the fabric medium (1 part to 1 part) I, personally have liked Delta Ceramcoat mixed with my latex paint.  I have heard good things about Martha Stewart fabric medium, and I will be trying that next.

2. Paint- Be sure to use at least a satin finish.  You could use a semi-gloss as well, if you are going for a dressier or glossier look.  You may use flat, but the texture is going to be more rough when the product is finished.  I think you will be most satisfied with the outcome if you choose a satin paint.

3. Don’t be afraid of a little sandpaper- If you come across an area after your first coat that is a bit rough, sand it out a bit.  In between coats, you can take a piece of fine grit sandpaper (like 320) and use it on the rough spots.  A painted chair will NOT be as soft as a new chair.  However, you can still get a great outcome, that is relatively soft and not stiff or crunchy by following these steps.

4. Wet first- then paint!  I missed this step when I first learned about upholstery painting and I assure you, this makes the paint go on much smoother.  You deal with less streaking and blotchiness if you are painting a fabric or upholstery that is wet.  You can use a wet towel or a spray bottle to wet the area before you paint.

5. Thin Coats are the key to getting a good outcome.  Now, this can be time consuming, but it is worth the wait for the 3 coats.  Just like painting your walls, the first coat looks a little rough.  And really, the first coat is used as a “primer.”  Same for the upholstery.  It is better to do 3 or 4 thin coats, than 1 or 2 heavier, blotchier coats.  You can be more generous on your final coat, but remember to let the paint soak in so that you don’t have a rough and stiff product at the end.

I just started blogging all the projects I have done for years, so I have a lot of pictures and projects to sort through and crop before posting, so I will get to it.  Just be patient as I get my projects and pictures together to be posted.  Thanks so much!