How to Upcycle a Velour Armchair – Using Paint

This How to Guide was provided by Alison West of Ayr Brushed.

I have a vintage style chair, which I love. I use it every day at my computer, its an old style but not a very old piece in terms of years. The upholstery is velour and in good shape.


It was just the wrong colour for my surroundings …

… so I decided to paint it.

I used Fusion Mineral Paint colour Homestead Blue on the main chair structure and Fusion Mineral Paint Seaside on the upholstery. These shades perfectly compliment one another.

NOTE: Fusion do not recommend painting velour type fabrics, but I like to experiment and thought I would have a go, I’m either brave or daft!

Materials Needed:


Step 1: Add water (and paint!)

I first wet the fabric with water using a spray bottle to ensure that all the fabric was wet.

I mixed my paint with a 50/50 ratio water to paint and applied it all over the fabric, working it in with a brush.

What you are doing with this method is ‘staining’ or ‘dyeing’ the fabric as opposed to painting the fabric. 

I also painted right over all the metal studs as these were to be repainted back in at the end with a different colour.

After the first coat it looked pretty patchy, but don’t let this put you off! I should maybe have mixed the paint as I went along making sure it didn’t separate, but the patchiness was remedied in the second coat.

Step 2: Paint the wood

Whilst the first coat was drying I painted the wooden parts of the chair, it had 2 coats of undiluted paint. 

I painted back in all the metal studs using Rub n Buff with a fine artist brush. The colour is metallic Pewter. I also added Pewter to the detailing on the woodwork, there was a lovely floral scroll detail on the top of the chair which you couldn’t see when it was brown, and to the indentations and detailing on its lovely curved legs.

Step 3: Sand and repeat

Once the first coat was fully dry ( I gave it a couple of hours) I lightly sanded the roughness off the top where the paint was sitting on the pile of the fabric, I then applied a second coat without soaking the fabric this time, but still using a 50/50 water to paint ratio.

It gets a bit messy

Its really messy as you have to lift the fabric folds as you go along so as to get the colour underneath them.

Step 4: Sand and retouch

I left the second coat to dry for several hours then gave it a further light sanding to remove any crispiness. I touched up any areas around the fabric where I hit them with the second coat. The fabric is a little stiffer than originally was but not hard, paint will obviously alter the fabric structure.

Step 5: Have a seat


I am sitting comfortably on this chair as I type  I absolutely love it and I used only around 6 tablespoons of paint on the fabric (and a lot of work) but I’m sure you will agree it has made a huge improvement on the piece, and it matches my other furniture perfectly.

That’s what upcycling is all about after all.

This How to Guide was provided to Upcycle My Stuff by Ayr Burshed.

Instagram: @ayrbrushed

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