Anyone ever Paint a Sofa?????

LivingInOzDecember 15, 2003

Hey to all of you!! I have a new old sofa that is in primo shape except (always except...) the top of the back cushions and the top back of the sofa are faded from being infront of a window too long. The fabric is smooth and soft and is originally a medium dark denim blue color. I would like to use dye or paint to hide the fading, thinking a sponge or stipple brush would look cool but... (always a but...) can I have my dye and have it soft, too? And how could I set that color...

I would love any suggestions you might have....

Thanks Jill

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techsupport8

I know there's a fabric painting additive one can add to acrylic paints that is set by a hot iron - like for painting t-shirts. I would think if the paint was thin enough it shouldn't be too rough. The link below has lots of paint and lots of info.

Best of luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: fabric painting

    Bookmark   December 15, 2003 at 11:32PM
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penny1947

There is a dye that you can use but the name of it escapes me right now (Rit would work too). You could even put it in a spray bottle and spray your sofa which would give it a random pattern like that of sponging (darker in areas where the spray overlapped and lighter in some areas).

I have thought of doing the same thing since I got a new sofa that doesn't match my perfectly good loveseat except my love seat is a green and blue plaid. My only alternative will be to slipcover the loveseat or get a new one.
Penny

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 4:33AM
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Auntie_Mo

I saw it done on Trading Spaces once, so I know it can be done. I don't remember what type of paint they used, but it was applied with a regular paint brush. Good luck, and let us know how it turns out.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 11:31AM
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LambsEar

Here's a link you might be interested in. I'm hoping to find a chair I can do this to.

Here is a link that might be useful: Faux leather chair

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 12:19PM
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LivingInOz

Thanks you guys... I knew I had come to the right spot. LambsEar, that leather-look is pretty cool. I'd try it on a chair but a 13' sofa might be intense! LOL And techsupport, that fabric dye site is awesome! I need to go back and really dig through it. I also got some advice from Ina, a long time fabric artist on GW who thought that using diluted acrylic paints would work very well and soften up with a bit of use. The cool thing is I can remove the seat and back cushion covers and toss them in the washer\dryer to set and soften them if needed. The rit dye would work I think to get the faded part back to solid color and then sponge the whole works with the diluted acrylic using a huge, rough sea sponge or stamp... oooh, stamps!

I need to wait til the weather warms a bit and then I'm going for it. Thanks to you all, I'll keep you posted. In the meantime any other ideas couldn't hurt... =) Y'all rock! Jill

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 12:32PM
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Pamelad1

If you can remove the cushions, I would dye them using Rit in a color close to the orginal. For the back of the sofa, I'd try mixing up the same color dye and applying it out of a spray bottle. Do small sections at a time and keep a wet edge if possible. If worse comes to worse, throw a pretty blanket over the back of the couch and put the cushions back on. Good luck!

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 1:22PM
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anne_h

I saw that episode of Trading Spaces, it was Hildie that did it (of course) and she used a compressor/ air gun. It didn't turn out at all because it rained that night. The fact that she did it screaming hot pink didn't help ...

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 1:57PM
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coloredthumb

___________________________________________________________
Posted by: Auntie_Mo (My Page) on Tue, Dec 16, 03 at 11:31

I saw it done on Trading Spaces once, so I know it can be done. I don't remember what type of paint they used, but it was applied with a regular paint brush. Good luck, and let us know how it turns out.
___________________________________________________________

I saw it done on Trading Spaces once too! The paint job looked awful steaky and uneven. Then the couchs got left out in the rain so they were ruined! (IMHO Hildi left them out on purpose because she ruined them to begin with with the paint technique she tried.)
I tried to paint a chair and it was pretty nasty, stiff and blotchy.
I did dye a chair and it turned out pretty good. I used regular fabric dye and spritzed it on evenly with a spray bottle. I did 2 applications letting it dry over night between, let it dry again then used plane upholstry cleaner to clean it, let it dry in the sunshine all day. It turned out fabulous. Good luck!

    Bookmark   December 16, 2003 at 4:00PM
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bloominweeds

Decorating Cents just did that on the show today. Some additive to the paint and brushed it on the sofa.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2003 at 3:33PM
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penny1947

I saw the episode of Decorating Cents. They used a textile medium in the acrylic paint (2 parts paint to 1 part textile medium). They also used a wide paint brush to apply the paint which was also thinned down with water to get a more even flow and coverage. They let it dry and then they did a second coat. Thinning the paint with water also keeps it from becoming stiff. If you feel that the new color (whether dye or paint) looks splotchy you can rubber stamp or stencil in coordinating colors or in the same color family all over in a random pattern. Good designs for this would be leaves, Greek Key, spirals, FLeur de Lis, large flower heads
Penny 2

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 4:28AM
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LivingInOz

I saw that episode on Trading Spaces (where Hildi sprayed that sofa). I thought the color was aweful but the idea... was brilliant. That's what got me onto this idea in the first place.

Then I was painting my house and got the paint all over my work shirt. After it had been washed the paint stayed forever but was soft. So I tried some leaf stamping experiments on different fabrics using house paint (latex) and it worked beautifully! The only catch it it has to be something that can be washed and dried (as Colored Thumb found out after she painted her chair.) It works great for making pillows and t-shirts but not for furniture.

Penny, what is textile medium? I think I should know this but...LOL.

Since my sofa is nearly all cushions I can play around a bit. And lucky me, I have one extra pillow that came with the sofa that doesn't fit on it but is same color & fabric (must've been from a matching chair)so it is my....
blah-ha-ha-ha... experiment. "Come, Renfeild!... to the dye vats..." =:~)

Thanks ya'll, Jill

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 10:52AM
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bloominweeds

go to hgtv website and look up the show they should tell you everything they used or the process. Good luck

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 11:25AM
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penny1947

Hey Jill,
Textile medium is used with acrylic paints that are not normally designed to use on fabric. It permits the paint toflo easier and to stay wet a bit longer than it normally would for regular acrylic paint so that it is more workable on fabric (blending colors, shading, smoothing out colors, etc. It also allows the paint to penetrate certain fibres better.
Penny

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 4:48PM
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lucymarie

Jill,
Came across a thread on
That Home Site, in Home Decorating,
where they discussed painting and dyeing upholstered furniture.
I'll try to link it below :)

Hope it helps :)
Lucy

Here is a link that might be useful: Anyone paint upholstered furniture

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 6:47PM
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LivingInOz

Thanks for explaining the textile medium, Penny. That helps... (Lord knows I need it!! =;~) And thanks to you too Lucy, I'll check that out. And Bloominweeds, I'm goin' there to check that one out as well. I've never gotten so much help on something in my life... gotta luv GW!
Jill

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 6:52PM
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diydana

yeah I saw where someone threw paint on a couch with brushes...different colors etc. Looked doted and stringy and funky! I am thinking Sammy Hagar of Van Halen was there. Cabbo Wabbo-ish.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2003 at 9:08PM
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painterchic98

Paint a sofa on purpose???
Ummm....no.
I knew someone that dyed a white corduroy couch brown.
They used RIT dye and a sponge for the body of the sofa, the back came out a little uneven but it was against the wall so didn't matter much, thay took the cushion covers off and dyed them in the washing machine.
~Ruth

    Bookmark   December 24, 2003 at 9:19AM
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Ann40

I did! I mixed the medium with regualar house paint, using a brush I just painted it on. A year later the couch is still in great shape.
I may still have the before and after pictures, will look and post it if I do.
Ann

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 8:54AM
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Ann40

I posted the picture in the gallery

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 9:00AM
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coloredthumb

Ann40,
Great job! I did mine so long ago I only thinned the paint down and had never heard of the paint medium for fabric before. Times change and new fangled inventions are always coming! I have a couch that I am going to try this on next and I sure hope the after pic looks as good ad yours.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 10:47AM
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LivingInOz

Ann0-

THAT SOFA ROCKS!!!! Yeahhhh! I knew it could be done!! I just showed my hubb that photo of your sofa and he thought it was awesome. He's right in there with me now. I always figured if it goes bad so what! We can just put that slipcover back on and be no worse for wear.

So, now I'm full of questions.

*You mixed house paint (latex or oil?) with fabric textile medium and brushed it on?
*Did you thin the whole mixture with water or something and then just let it air dry?
*And last but not least, is the couch stiff or scratchy because you used paint instead of dye?

Thanks again for posting that photo! Hope you had a nice holiday.
Jill

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 3:12PM
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des_arc_ya_ya

Another question! Where do you buy the textile medium? Can you get it like at Hobby Lobby or Michael's, or do I need to look at a sure'nuff paint store? TIA

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 3:54PM
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des_arc_ya_ya

I swear! I find myself "mesmerized" by this post of "painting a sofa"!!! Makes me want to run out and buy an ugly one just to do "lab experiments" on!! LOL (Anybody else feel the same way?)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2003 at 8:23PM
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diydana

Paint a sofa on purpose???
Ummm....no.
ha ha ha painterchic that was funny.
You some how reminded me of when my husband was watching our then 3 year old.(btw this child is almost 12) My hubby was reading alone and our son took the mustard and painted our new bed.
Yup mustard. It was ruined...never came out.
My new bed in 2001 cost $ 1,050.00 no headboard..nothing just the bed. I told them all.... if anyone puts a drop of mustard or even thinks about a hotdog standing in my bedroom I will kill that person.
The good part is my 11 year old and 2 year old hates the yellow stuff.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2003 at 11:15AM
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painterchic98

Mustard paint,
what an idea, lol.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2003 at 1:38PM
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Ann40

Sorry it took me so long to reply, flu season here as well.

As for the paint, it was the cheap inside gloss paint from Walmart.
I mixed the medium with the paint, it says to mix 1 part medium to 3 parts paint, but I used 6 (2oz.) small bottles to a 1/2 gal. of paint. I also got this at walmart.
I used a foam brush and really just slapped it on, did one side of the cushions first and set them outside to dry. While that was drying I started painting the rest of the couch, kept checking the cushions, when they were dry enough to handle I painted the other side. It didn't take long to dry either.
As for the texture of the couch, there was some stiffness but nothing really hard and after a while the stiffness left. Guess with use anything will soften up, huh LOL
These couches(actually love seats) were terrible, dirty, stained but not torn. I got them free and loved the style plus they were hide-a-beds.
I love the way the couches turned out and everyone that sees them can't believe I painted them.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2003 at 10:37AM
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LivingInOz

Ann, thank you for posting the info., that really helps. I am definitely going to paint my sofa as soon as we have some nice warm (sunny) weather! It's been too cold and wet this winter. I think I will use either diluted tube acrylic or interior latex mixed with the textile medium. I am planning on using a large sea sponge to dabble a fairly dark green color onto the sofa and top that with a very, very dark midnight blue. Ideally the light denim blue and the green will slightly peek out from under the dark blue giving the whole thing a feaux marble effect - very textural. (I'm using the green because it is a huge part of my interior color like curtains, knick knacks, etc).

A friend of mine has a digital camera and I want to take before and after pic's to share with y'all when I get this done. I guess I get a little more time to plot my strategy.

Sorry to hear the flu season's got you, too. My whole house is down with a cold (not the flu - thank goodness). We hope you feel better soon.

Again, I want to thank everyone who posted here - every bit of the information y'all provided will help me make this sofa awesome and has given me much confidence. Thank you, thank you!

Hope you all have a great New Year. Joy and many blessings to you. Jill

    Bookmark   December 29, 2003 at 10:31AM
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redsofa

ok I used scarlet RIT, only one application so far.
Hot water, normal dilution, no salt, Sea Sponge application followed by a heavy rinse.
The cushion covers went in the washer.

I plan to put a second coat with less dilution and the addition of salt or baking soda, but I want to check color fastness to make sure the dye won't seep up onto someone's clothes while they sit on my sofa.

After the hard rinse I can still get dye out. However I have to rub a damp sponge into the fabric hard for 10 minutes & I only get a tiny bit of pink off. Now that's pretty safe, unless someone wets themselves on my couch while sleeping for 8 hours, I doubt any red will ever come back up onto anyone's clothes.

I would like to go the extra mile and find some fabric sealer and stain repellant. I've searched all the local arts/craft and fabric stores. I can't find the stuff anywhere. I'm gonna try calling drapery and upholstry cleaning services to see if they can point me in the right direction. I've seen stuff online, but I wanted to buy the stuff locally and get this project done. Any ideas?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2004 at 2:32PM
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coloredthumb

Any ideas?
The best fabric protectent I have ever used is the Old 3M brand SCOTCH GAURD spray on. I'm pretty sure it is still in department stores. I just got some to waterproof my tent again for next weeks camping trip.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2004 at 2:43PM
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bnicebkind

i tried a spray paint on an old sofa where most of the leather had cracked and worn of. It look horrible when i was done. It did not work at all.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2004 at 11:45AM
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gburbank

I have used simply spray fabric paint on a sofa. It worked well air dries and is soft when done.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2006 at 3:05PM
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aseret

Check out DIY Network...they did that the other day...When they lightly brushed on fabic paint they used a paper towel to rub excess off & blend it & give the couch a more "mellow" look...They also said..."CANNOT BE STEAM CLEANED" I don't remember if you can even spot clean it...Try & check out some web sites...

    Bookmark   April 7, 2006 at 8:14PM
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neetsiepie

This cracks me up. I have a wing chair that I was going to make a slip cover for (how hard could it be, on HGTV they make 'em all the time!). Yeah right! It was a smooth fabric chair, so I covered it with primer, then I painted on with acrylic paints in a cabbage rose print. It wasn't too stiff...felt like vinyl almost.

When we moved to our new house the chair came with me but moved to the family room. I changed it's look to faux leather by spray painting it rust colored primer then hitting with some dark brown. It looks VERY authentic and now it also FEELS like leather!

    Bookmark   April 11, 2006 at 1:00AM
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emagineer

This is an old thread....but since it lasted a good 4 mos. and many posts, thought maybe there would stil be some interest. Auto stores sell fabric spray paint. I used it years ago on a sofa and it worked great.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2006 at 7:42AM
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des_arc_ya_ya

Ooooh! Auto stores? Really? I never got a "project" couch to work on, but I DO have an old platform type rocker in the shed. May have to make a "sashay" into town today! LOL

Thanks for resurrecting this post, emagineer!

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 12:54PM
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hhat666

I painted mine over a year ago and have just recently painted it again using household emulsion superb i love it..

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 6:39PM
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concretenprimroses

Pictures please!
kathy

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 12:28PM
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susieq07

I painted faded flowers, leaves etc. on a couch and matching valences and eating nook in our first motorhome, with fabric paint and alot of patience, it turned out great, and was done on fabric almost like velvet, pic. is old and was taken with a 35mm but before painting you could, barely see the blue & purple flowers, that were actually blue & pink, I changed the pink to purple, but the fabric paint does work, and does not rub of,
Pic. below:

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 2:55PM
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clarejoe

I found a great way to renew old clothing, bedding even furniture. I found Simply Spray spray on dye at Michaels Crafts. I used it to renew an old stained white shirt, people asked me where I got my new shirt. I used Black to do the cushions of an old Pink chair(looks like new). I used Blue to re-dye my daughters bedspread instead of buying a new color, then I did her lampshade to match it perfectly. If I can do it anyone can. Save money and do something good for the enviroment this is non-toxic and recyclable. This website shows you a how to video (it is too easy). http://simplyspray.com

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 7:30AM
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cynthia57

try sunshine.com they sell great spray paint for this type of job .

    Bookmark   July 13, 2009 at 5:04PM
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oceanna

Pictures that stay up, please! Try using www.tinypic.com to post pics?

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 12:09AM
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