This summer, I finally had to face it.
Yep, I finally faced the fact that all of the outdated fabrics in my home weren’t going anywhere…. and it was time for action.
The truth is I had seen various techniques for painting upholstery, but never really felt like I found the answer for updating my own outdated pieces.
So last week, I bit the bullet. And now, after a few hiccups, I can honestly share how to avoid some of the pitfalls when updating upholstery with paint.
Here’s what happened.
Disclosure: I was provided a paint sprayer and shelter tents by HomeRight in exchange for writing a review. Although this is a sponsored post, all fabric painting flops and opinions are 100% my own.
How to Create a Painted Fabric Flop:
Just so you know, it takes real guts to show you the flop. I could have left off the first part of the story, but felt I owed it to you to let you know that I find my way by walking the journey. By reading this post, I surely hope you are spared some of the heartache.
Step 1: To Prime or Not to Prime
Yes, for this fabric, definitely prime! I knew from the beginning that I didn’t want a white undercoat to the fabric and yet the red stamps could show through if there was no primer. Now we all know that if this piece was made of wood, it’d get a good shellacking. But fabric? What kind of primer is best?
Step 2: Choose Wisely
I tried priming with the actual chalky-type paint (lower left) that would be used for the final coat, but that didn’t work. So I switched to a black chalky-type paint and it seemed to totally block the stamps.
Step 3: Let the Priming Begin
Yes, do let the priming begin, but take heed. Here’s where my plan veered off course. I only spot primed over the red stamps.
Step 4: Apply Custom Color
Then I applied the custom color made into a chalky-type paint (product info here) and BEHOLD… the flop. If something could go wrong, it did. This had quickly become the Murphy’s Law of fabric painting.
OK. New plan………
How to Fix a Painted Fabric Flop:
Step 1: Break Out the HomeRight Spray Shelter
To fix this flop, even coats of both primer and paint needed to be applied to the ottoman. To get this process going, the shelter tent was popped into place. It took all of two seconds. Simply pull the shelter from the zip bag, pull back the black elastic tab, and place it on a flat surface.
The shelter will pop up like a pansy out of the snow.
There is zero assembly. Notice that there is a vent in the back that can be opened or closed. If it is open, some spray overflow may spritz a few inches past the protective screen.
Step 2: Break Out the HomeRight Finish Max
At this point, the ottoman had already been completely primed with the black chalky-type paint using a brush. Why… oh why…. did I waste my time and energy? Trust me, I should have sprayed the primer. But I did spray the top coats (it took two) using the HomeRight paint sprayer according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Step 3: Make the Fabric Painting Flop Disappear
The entire ottoman was painted black before the topcoat was applied because I wanted to accomplish three things:
(1) Completely block the red forever and ever.
(2) Remove the splotches that occurred early in the process. And,
(3) create a layered look to the finished product. Ever notice how different colored threads are woven through fabrics? Yea, we need to get this look….. only with a black undertone….not beige.
Sidenote: Yes, I had to move the tent because of a bad encounter with an angry squadron of fire ants. I’ll spare you the photo of my swollen foot. 🙁
But will say that the shelter is as light as a feather. It is as easy to handle as an umbrella. Oh and did you notice…. it has loops on all four sides that attach to bungie cords in case your spray day is a bit breezy.
Step 4: The Fix is In
And here, dear Friends, is a look at the ottoman after two coats of spray paint using the HomeRight Finish Max. It looks like this without any sanding or other treatment. It is truly a before and after. Yowza!! I’m so thrilled.
Just for jollies, I managed to catch the light so that you can see the black peeking out through the gray paint. It really is hardly noticeable other than there is a depth to the new fabric color that would likely not be there without the black primer. To get this fabric nap (the mottled look), I had to use a special lens.
For more projects in this series:
Outdated artwork makeover (behind the ottoman) is here.
10-minute side table makeover (for this room) is here.
How to lighten without going white is here.
And please, don’t forget to pin and share….
Many thanks to the good folks at HomeRight for providing the wonderful shelters and paint sprayer that saved the ottoman.
More projects using these products are already underway….
Patio swing refresh
Patio furniture refresh
Cedar arbor refresh
I do hope you will join us…..
#homeright #homerightfinishmax #homerightfinishmaxsprayer