Saturday, November 10, 2012

How to Dye Upholstered Furniture!

So I actually bought two matching vintage tufted cane chairs off of Craigslist. The sweet lady actually recognized me from the blog! I was so flattered. 

Anyway, the whole point of this is she mentioned that she was waiting to see how I did the blue cane chair! So here it is mystery fan from Craigslist with awesome chairs.
I know it's awesome.

Well, it's time to reveal how I changed it from this:

how to dye furniture upholstery

To this!
how to dye furniture upholstery

She thought I painted the chair, which probably lots of you think that.

The idea of painting upholstery was one in the back of my mind forever. It seemed way easier than reupholstering a chair, but at the same time having to paint it on in layers, etc etc. It seemed like it would take a long time and I just didn't want to do it!

So I dyed it!


how to dye furniture upholstery

I mixed a cap full of RIT dye with 1.5 cups of HOT water!

First I tried painting it on with a brush. Dip it in the dye, brush it on. I could have just painted it at the rate this was going.

So, I put the dye in a spray bottle and just soaked the upholstery!

how to dye furniture upholstery

Now everything will drip like crazy, so I don't recommend doing this unless you are planning on painting the wooden parts...or if you are lickety split at wiping the drippy dye off...but then more drips!

I recommend putting a towel on your floor. :) Doing it outside would be best, but it was in the middle of the night when I did mine! Go figure!

I also recommend wearing gloves so you don't dye your skin!

Anyhow, all you really have to do is spray it on and saturate the fabric.

Let the chair dry over night. It was still a little damp in the morning, so I set it out in the sun for just a couple of hours and it was ready for paint.

how to dye furniture upholstery
The white on the arm is where I had to make a repair.

For painting, be sure and cover every, single, bit of fabric with news paper! I was a little sad to paint it because I thought the blue went beautifully with the brown frame. However, there was a big chunk out of the frame. So, I had to paint her.

how to dye furniture upholstery

Then just use spray paint to cover the wooden areas! Check out my spray painting tips  here!

Anyway, there you have it. Don't reupholster your pieces, dye them!

how to dye furniture upholstery

how to dye furniture upholstery
Check out that cute damask side table  here!

Other random information:
  • The dye will not bleed on your DRY clothes. I put a WHITE pillow case on the chair for about a week with some big books stacked on top of it to add weight. The pillow case was still white!
  • However, I did a test area with a damp paper towel (I let it sit for half the day, weighted down), and there was some color on the towel. So, just don't sit on your piece wet! Or you could try rinsing/washing it when you're finished.
  • The fabric is still soft. It does not change the texture of the material one bit!
  • The RIT website has a lot of information on color combinations so you can get the perfect color. i.e. mix 1/2 a cap of this with a cap of this to get whatever color. :)

 Next I want to try going from a darker color to a lighter color! Wish me luck!

how to dye furniture upholstery