Dyeing Fabric With Chalk Paint

When I didn’t have the ivory colored linen I needed for the back of some pillows I decided to dye some pure white linen I had in my fabric stash using Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint.  The process is very easy and relatively quick.  And because this is chalk paint clean up is a breeze.

In this tutorial I am using 100% white linen fabric. I am trying to achieve an ivory color using Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint in “cream”.

Supplies needed:

  • Fabric (natural fibers work the best)
  • Water
  • Container to hold your fabric and water
  • Annie Sloan Chalk paint  (color of your choice)
  • Paintbrush

Step 1: Use something that is large enough for all your fabric when filled with water.

Step 1:

Fill a container with water. The amount of water needed will vary on how much fabric you are working with.  You will need at least enough water to be able to submerge the fabric entirely.

If you have more than one piece of fabric make sure to dye them all at one time. This will ensure that all pieces come out the same color. This was critical for me because I didn’t measure the amount of water or paint I used so trying to replicate the exact same color next time might be difficult, if not impossible.

Step 2: Be sure to mix your paint well.

Step 2:

Add chalk paint to the water. The key thing to remember is that with chalk paint a little goes a long way.  I wanted my fabric to be a relatively light ivory so I added just a little bit of paint. I think I added maybe a tablespoon of paint. But I “eyeballed” it so I don’t know exactly how much paint was used. Remember to start with less paint than you think you might need. You can always add more paint if needed.

 Step 3: 

Mix the paint with a paintbrush. Mix down the bottom and sides of the container to make sure there are no paint clumps.

Step 4:

Place your fabric into the container and submerge it completely to make sure all parts of the fabric get wet. I like to swoosh my fabric around in the dye to make sure it gets into all the creases.  You want to make sure you get nice even coverage.

 Reminder: If you have more than one piece of fabric make sure to dye them all at one time. This will ensure that all pieces come out the same color. Trying to replicate the exact same color next time might be difficult, if not impossible.

Below: After just seconds you can see the dye has already taken to the fabric on the left.  If you want a darker look, keep your fabric in the mixture a bit longer. The piece on the bottom right is the original white linen I started with.

Step 5:

Remove you fabric from the mixture. Gently wring out the excess water and hang dry. That’s all there is to it. You are done!  If you are hang drying your fabric indoors be sure to protect your floors in case there is any dripping water.

The pictures below show the original white linen next to the newly dyed ivory linen.

Enjoy your custom colored fabric! If you use my tutorial please let me know…I would love to see your project!

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