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Do you have an old rug that’s looking old and faded? Don’t throw it out just yet! Have you ever considered giving your rug a quick refresh? Did you know that you can paint a rug?!

Learn how to paint a rug, to update a space in your home!

Before we get into the steps to paint a rug, here are a few tips that will help you create a beautiful rug.

  • Rugs that have a low nap or a flat woven rug will work best.
  • Use good painters tape. (Frog tape is our favorite)
  • Use a good quality brush
  • Apply more than one coat of paint
  • If planning to paint a pattern, sketch it out first to make sure you like it.
  • Mix fabric medium into your paint so your rug is washable
  • Paint from the edge of the tape inward to prevent bleeding
  • Optional, apply fabric protector once complete

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The Rug | Before

paint a rug

Anyone can see that this rug has seen better days. It’s faded and has some snags. But why not give it a quick refresh to make it look like new again?

paint a rug

Here’s a look at the snags close up. The white stripes weren’t a bright white either. They have a slight blue hue from the blue color bleeding from being laundered.

Apply Painters Tape

paint a rug
paint a rug

I love the simple striped design, so I decided I’d stick with that same pattern.

If you’re wanting to really transform a rug and start with a clean slate, you can definitely paint a new design on your rug!

The first step was simply to add frog tape to the edges of the blue stripes.

Be sure to firmly press the edge of tape down to ensure a nice crisp paint line.

paint a rug

Once all of the frog tape has been applied, it’s ready to be painted.

Supplies to Paint a Rug

paint a rug

To ensure your rug will hold up through laundering, you’ll want to use a fabric medium with your paint. We had Delta Ceramcoat Textile Medium on hand from a previous project.

The fabric medium will prevent bleeding of colors and creates a smooth flow of paint on fabrics. It will also help the color penetrate into the fabric fibers, which will make the paint bond to the fabric.

For the paint we’re using leftover, Behr Paint & Primer color matched to Benjamin Moore, Hale Navy.

paint a rug
paint a rug

Add a 2:1 ratio of paint to textile medium. For this 2×4 rug, we mixed 4 T. paint with 2 T. fabric medium.

paint a rug
paint a rug

Stir until combined. Note that the fabric medium will make the paint a little bit more runny, this is what helps the paint penetrate into the fabric fibers.

How To Paint A Rug

paint a rug

The quality of your brush really will make a difference on any painting project.

We prefer using a brush by Purdy. We love their brushes, while they are a little more expensive, they are well worth it. We get much better results.

Begin by placing the brush on the edge of the frog tape and brush inward toward the fabric. This will help prevent any bleeding.

paint a rug

Look at the difference already! The painted stripe already looks so much more rich and colorful than the worn and faded stripe.

paint a rug

Fabric fibers really soak up the paint. Even if you think you’ve covered your area heavily, be sure to give it a second coat.

In this case, since we already began with an existing blue stripe, it acted as a first coat of paint, so we were able to get away with only one coat of paint.

(More projects are linked below for additional ideas of painting on fabric. Two coats of paint were used on each of these.)

paint a rug

After each of the stripes had been painted we pulled the frog tape off. This is best to do while the paint is still wet.

The Rug | After

paint a rug

Now would you have ever thought to paint a rug? Look what a difference it made!

We only added blue paint, but having those stripes more rich in color, gives the illusion of a more bright white too.

I absolutely love the navy and white stripes on our front porch! It creates such a fun and relaxed feel to our small space.

If you’d like to see what patriotic elements we used for our porch decor you can take a tour of our porch here.

Thanks for stopping by! If you are new here, WELCOME! You can learn more about us here.

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And as always here at Sunny Side Design


paint a rug

To explore more examples of painting on fabric click on each image below.

For more budget friendly ideas be sure to follow us on Pinterest and subscribe to our YouTube channel for even more budget-friendly DIY ideas!

Want to shop Steph’s style? Click on the image below to shop her house room by room.

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