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.
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!
- Paint of your choice (Mineral Paint or Chalk Paint)
- medium paintbrush for the fabric
- small paintbrush for the detail
- Rub n Buff in your chosen colour
- a bowl for mixing.
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.
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.