Painting Upholstered Furniture (easiest DIY ever)

Painting upholstered furniture DIYA few months ago a very nice coworker found out we had literally no furniture except a bed, table, and dresser. He gave us two chairs, a coffee table, and a TV stand that he and his wife weren’t using anymore. The white chairs had been used by their adorable dogs, so naturally they were looking a little worn. I was just grateful to have something to put in our living room so I threw blankets over them and made loose plans to reupholster them.

After reading about how to reupholster a chair, I knew I could do it but I also knew it could be expensive, especially if I made any mistakes. The blankets stayed and I kept the idea in the back of my mind for a day when we had more cash to spare.

And then a wonderful thing happened. I was on Pinterest for work (promise, look at my services page, it’s a thing) and I found a DIY for painted upholstery. Later, on my own time, I found lots of confusing and scary and unclear and mildly helpful blog posts. I decided to take a few things from each one and just do it.

Good news: it worked! More good news: I love these chairs!

1 squeegee
2 8oz bottles of Martha Stewart Crafts Vintage Decor Paint in Matte Chalk Finish (per chair)
1 spray bottle
2-3 sizes of sponge brushes

2-3 hours plus 24 hours before they are sit-able again
(Don’t worry! You will not be painting the whole 2-3 hours. This includes drying time between coats.)

Warning: this is very easy. You might want to paint all of your furniture after this.

  1. Mix water in with the paint. It should be about a 1/1 ratio but it’s not a huge deal as long as you’re consistent each time you mix the two.
  2. Squirt the chair with water. Thoroughly. Don’t soak it but make sure it’s damp before you paint it.
  3. Paint. Paint your heart out. My husband read that you should paint in circles, and I admit his work looked better than mine. So paint in circles.
  4. Let the first coat dry for 30 minutes.
  5. Paint again. Make sure you’re still squirting the chair as you paint.
  6. Let it dry for 30 minutes.
  7. Paint again if it needs another coat. If not, wait an hour.
  8. Sand it down. This is what makes the fabric feel like indoor fabric again.
  9. Wait 24 hours.
  10. Admire your hard work. Tell all of your friends. Bask in the glory as they tell you how cool you are. Invite them over and notice you missed a spot.