How to Paint on Fabric Permanently

Since I was a teenager, I have been using paint on my faded favourite T-shirts to give them a boost.

I always use a simple brush flick to have a stylish and fresh garment within a short period.

When they hear about this technique, the questions on most people’s minds are: how many washes will it survive?

How long can it last? Below is a guide on how to paint your fabric permanently.

You can permanently paint on fabric by mixing acrylic paint with the fabric medium.

Acrylic paint is well known for its excellent and fast-drying abilities.

However, the paint can peel or crack if used alone.

Adding a medium-like fabric will give the paint great flexibility to make it a permanent finish.

Here’s how to permanently paint on fabric…

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Why do I need to paint fabric?

Minor paintwork can do a lot of wonders when it comes to adding life to an old fabric.

You can use different vibrant colours to create a beautiful design.

Panting can make the designs you see in stores provided you give a different ink and dye effect to make the garment unique and individual.

There is no better way to bring out your personality than using unique colours on your fabric.

Creating your design can boost your confidence when walking with your friends.

The feeling of creating something no one else has is soul-lifting, especially when family and friends will ask where you got that design.

Steps of painting on fabric permanently

Before starting to paint on fabric, you need to select the right paint first.

The first choice is the fabric, and then you can go with standard acrylic paint.

You should also have a fabric medium for easy application and permanency when using acrylic paint.

However, you need to follow the below steps to paint on fabric permanently.

Step 1: Prepare The Garment

Start by preparing the garment after selecting the paint to use.

Ensure you have done a pre-wash before adding the colour to help remove any chemicals or dirt left during manufacturing.

Avoid using fabric softeners during pre-wishing as they add chemicals that can hinder paint adherence.

Step 2 Ensure It’s Dry

Ensure the garment is dry and test a small sample of the adherence of the paint to it.

Take time to see the efficiency of paint on the fabric.

You can use a thicker paint coat or add another one, depending on the paint effect you want on your fabric.

Step 3 Iron To Remove Wrinkles

Iron your garment to remove wrinkles in the painting area. Wrinkles can hinder paint from reaching some places, creating crevices.

However, you can also leave it with wrinkles to get a gap design on the fabric.

Step 4: Paint

Paint the garment.

Ensure you have a medium between the sides to prevent paint from seeping straight through if you want to paint one side.

Use a stencil and brush or a free hand.

Step 5: Allow To Dry

Give your garment at least 24 hours to dry, and then use heat to set the paint.

A dryer set can work, but ironing is the best option.

Turn the fabric inside out and iron on the back of the design. The iron heat will give you a unique and permanent finish.

How Do You Paint On Fabric Permanently? 

Here’s how you paint on fabric permanently

  1. Prepare The Garment
  2. Ensure It’s Dry
  3. Iron To Remove Wrinkles
  4. Paint the fabric
  5. Allow to dry for 24hrs

Using the above five steps, you can easily make any paint permanent on fabric.

Always consider the colour of the material before starting to paint.

Lighter bases like cream, white and pale yellow are most preferred for fabric painting.

However, you can paint your purple shirt, but it might alter the paint’s effectiveness.