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How to Paint a Fabric Chair with Chalk Paint

How to Paint a Fabric Chair with Chalk Paint

Today, I will take you step by step how to paint a fabric chair with chalk paint. For beginners.

I use affiliate links in this post.

I am so excited to show you how to paint a fabric chair.

The transformation is unbelievable!

It’s a two day process, so give yourself some time.

To make sure your fabric furniture can be used for this project, here is a tip.

The fabric should be smooth.

Not bumpy.

It can have some texture.

But the main type of fabric needs to be a tight weave like:

Canvas.

Linen.

Vintage fabric on antique chairs or sofas.

All these are examples.

In the before photo below, you can see that the fabric is ugly.

At least is was to me. I paid $20 for it.

All that mattered was the fabric was perfect for painting.

The paint covered it up and turned it into exactly what I wanted to match my home.

That’s what I’m wanting for you.

To be able to take something you already own.

Or finding a cheap ugly chair like this one, for example.

The only cost will be the paint.

You’ll create something amazing and unique as you are.

That’s a win!

Now onward to the step by step instructions below.

If you have any questions, please ask in the comments below.

After photo of painted fabric chair.

What youll need to paint a fabric chair.

I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

  • Annie Sloan paint in two colors. In this tutorial I used Original (white) and Paris Grey.
  • Annie Sloan clear wax.
  • Rounded Annie Sloan paint brush in small. Or a generic brush with similar bristles.
  • Small 1 inch wide brush for legs.
  • Spray bottle filled with water.
  • Sandpaper – 120 grit.
  • Plastic cup (or mason jar) to put the paint and water in.
  • Cloths you don’t mind getting wax and paint on.
  • Drop cloth, tarp or large garbage bags to protect your floor.

Steps to paint a fabric chair with chalk paint:

  • Step 1: Wipe down your chair with a damp cloth. I used microfiber cloths.
  • Step 2: Use the paint stick to stir the paint in the can thoroughly.
  • Step 3. Mix 1/2 water to 1/2 chalk paint.

Spray with water.

  • Step 4: Using the spray bottle, spray down the entire chair with water.

Paint.

  • Step 5: Dip brush into paint. Not overloading with paint and do circular strokes starting at the top of the chair.
  • Step 6: Paint the entire fabric chair with chalk paint . This includes the cushion(s) if your chair has one or two. The fabric can vary. It can absorb more or less paint.

Dry.

  • Step 7: After the chair has slightly dried, apply a second coat. No need to respray the fabric with water. If your chair is a solid color it may only take two coats. If it has dark designs, like the one I’m doing, it could take up to 4 coats.
  • Step 8: Let the paint dry overnight.
  • Step 9: Open the small can of chalk paint for the legs and stir with a paint stick. I used the Original color.
  • Step 10: Lay chair on its side.

Paint the legs.

  • Step 11: Paint the legs with 2-3 coats of paint. Letting it dry fully between coats. It can take only 20-30 minutes to be dry enough to apply the extra layers of paint, if your impatient like me.
  • Step 12: Take chair and cushions (if this applies) outside or in an open area and lightly sand down the entire chair using very light strokes. The more smooth your sandpaper the better.
  • Step 13: For a rustic or vintage look, sand the legs along the corners and edges to reveal the wood underneath, as seen in the photo of this chair.
  • Step 14: Take chair back inside.

Waxing.

  • Step 15: Open the can of clear wax.
  • Step 16: Put a clean soft cloth into the wax and grab a good silver dollar size amount with the cloth. Apply the wax starting at the top doing a round circular motion to rub it into the fabric.

Applying the wax to the fabric, the legs and all sides of the cushions. Don’t over apply. There should be no globs of wax. Only a smooth layer rubbed into the fabric.

Final steps.

  • Step 17: Take a separate clean cloth and rub any overage of wax by doing a good wipe down from top to bottom.
  • Do Step 18: Let the chair dry thoroughly.
  • Step 19: To make sure the chair is ready to sit on, take a damp cloth and do a final wipe down. You are now done.
Painted fabric chair after 8 months.

How to Paint a Fabric Chair with Chalk Paint

A STEP BY STEP TUTORIAL FOR BEGINNERS.
Active Time1 hr 30 mins
Dry overnight2 d
Author: Esther@victorianlanefarms
Cost: $55

Equipment

  • Small 1 inch paint brush
  • Spray Bottle
  • 120 grit Sandpaper
  • Plastic cup to put paint in
  • Cloths you don't mind getting wax and paint on
  • Drop cloth, tarp or large garbage bag to protect your floors

Materials

  • 1 Litre Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Paris Grey
  • 1 Sample Pot Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Original White
  • 1 500 ml Annie Sloan Clear Wax
  • 1 Annie Sloan Paint Brush Preferably the large but small will do.

Instructions

  • Step 1: Wipe down your chair with a damp cloth. I used microfiber cloths.
  • Step 2: Use the paint stick to stir the paint in the can thoroughly.
  • Step 3. Mix 1/2 water to 1/2 chalk paint.
  • Step 4: Using the spray bottle, spray down the entire chair with water.
  • Step 5: Dip brush into paint. Not overloading with paint and do circular strokes starting at the top of the chair.
  • Step 6: Paint the entire fabric chair with chalk paint . This includes the cushion(s) if your chair has one or two. The fabric can vary. It can absorb more or less paint.
  • Step 7: After the chair has slightly dried, apply a second coat. No need to respray the fabric with water. If your chair is a solid color it may only take two coats. If it has dark designs, like the one I’m doing, it could take up to 4 coats.
  • Step 8: Let the paint dry overnight.
  • Step 9: Open the small can of chalk paint for the legs and stir with a paint stick. I used the Original color.
  • Step 10: Lay chair on its side.
  • Step 11: Paint the legs with 2-3 coats of paint. Letting it dry fully between coats. It can take only 20-30 minutes to be dry enough to apply the extra layers of paint, if your impatient like me.
  • Step 12: Take chair and cushions (if this applies) outside or in an open area and lightly sand down the entire chair using very light strokes. The more smooth your sandpaper the better.
  • Step 13: For a rustic or vintage look, sand the legs along the corners and edges to reveal the wood underneath, as seen in the photo of this chair.
  • Step 14: Take chair back inside.
  • Step 15: Open the can of clear wax.
  • Step 16: Put a clean soft cloth into the wax and grab a good silver dollar size amount with the cloth. Apply the wax starting at the top doing a round circular motion to rub it into the fabric.
  • Step 17: Take a separate clean cloth and rub any overage of wax by doing a good wipe down from top to bottom.
  • Step 18: Let the chair dry thoroughly.
  • Step 19: To make sure the chair is ready to sit on, take a damp cloth and do a final wipe down. You are now done.

Other fabric furniture I painted with Annie Sloan paint.

In the photo below, I painted this antique chair and ottoman with the same color, Paris Grey, but painted the wood in the Original White.

The antique settee, below, was painted with the color Graphite and Original white. This is in my entrance for guests to sit when taking off or putting on their shoes.

Plus, this antique sofa. I used the colors Paris Grey diluted with half Old White. For the wood I used the Old White color.

Here is a visual step by step tutorial how to paint the antique fabric sofa. It will blow your mind. What a transformation. You can also get a printed version of this tutorial by following this link.

Information about Annie Sloan paint.

Follow this link to find the store nearest you. To find an online store, follow this link.

Hopefully, this taught you that you can create beautiful masterpieces from ugly old furniture that would most likely get thrown away. Now you can take this tool and paint most anything.

Furniture and pieces you can paint.

The list is endless of things you can paint with chalk paint. Some ideas are as follows:

  • Couches
  • Loveseats
  • Footstools
  • Wall shelving
  • Wood tables
  • End tables
  • Consoles
  • Cabinets
  • Armoires
  • Fireplaces
  • Frames (here is a tutorial)
  • Or any wood surfaces.

Where to find affordable, beautiful pieces of furniture.

You can find furniture on these apps:

  • Craiglist.com
  • Letgo
  • Facebook Marketplace

You can find furniture at:

  • Second hand stores
  • Goodwill
  • Value Village
  • Antique stores

Check out my other tutorial using chalk paint. Here I will share how to makeover Goodwill frames.

Plus, I share a tutorial of how to paint a fabric antique sofa, here.

Thank you for coming by Victorian Lane Farms.

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4 Comments

    • September 2, 2021 / 2:50 am

      I couldn’t see your link. So glad you love doing DIYs. It sure is a fun way to make something unique, for sure. Thanks for visiting my blog.

  1. November 9, 2021 / 1:54 am

    I have been looking for a DIY link like yours to work on my diningroom for so long. This is great because I have two really ugly yellow stripe color chairs that I want blue or grayish and this looks like something I might be able to do!!

    • November 9, 2021 / 2:52 am

      You can do it! It’s really more simple than it seems. I’m not good with painting in general, but this technique does such an amazing job, it’s addicting. I’d love to hear how yours turns out. So glad you find this tutorial useful!