Monday, May 16, 2011

Can I Bleach This?

Is it possible to bleach this red print slipcover white? It's Laura Ashley fabric I bought 12 years ago for $3 a yard (*forgot to mention earlier that it's 100% cotton). The chair was found on the sidewalk near our Cambridge apt. back in 1987. I'm in the process of finishing up my family room and although the chair works well in this spot (fairly small scale) I'm not digging the fabric.
Another option would be to dye it charcoal gray but I'm not sure if I could get the color right... Curious to hear what you think or if you have any tips on bleaching.

27 comments:

Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...

What kind of fabric is it? Cotton? I don't think you would be able to bleach it white...maybe a more faded pink. I have heard of Painting fabric...just sayin'.

But really...having a new slipcover made would be the best way to get the look you want.

pve design said...

If you were to bleach it, it would only fade slightly. I think if you dye it an indigo, black or gray - it is worth a shot. If not, then have a slip-cover re-made with some great fabric that you really really love. I do like the shape of that chair very much.
pve

Rene said...

I agree that cotton will appear faded once bleached. Dyeing will work if it is cotton, but the only concern is the thread. If the thread is poly it will not take the dye the same (there may no be enough thread showing cause concerned). Maybe play with the underside of the cushion?

Pigtown-Design said...

hahahahaha! i can make a slipcover for you! hahahahah

SHERRY HART said...

Do you have a sample to try???? Or something similar? It sure works when I spill it on my jeans or something!!!

Boxwood Terrace said...

I've tried the bleach route before on a bright red floral, hoping for a soft, sun-faded look and it hardly made a difference in the strength of the color. Plus, a heavy dose of bleach will weaken the fibers of the fabric and may lead to holes.

Renée Finberg said...

i don't know about bleaching...
it may weaken the fabric badly.

a few years ago i diluted water based paint in water and dunked cotton sneakers in it.
they came out great!
not stiff, and the paint didn't stick to the rubber parts.

i have colored other fabrics in the same way, because i am freakish about colors. i need them to be just what i want them to be.

but they started out white.
it's a thought.....
xxx

Teresa at Splendid Sass said...

It would most likely bleach to a light pink, which could be dyed any gray you wish. I love anything Laura Ashley, I this fabric is so pretty.
Have a great week, Michele.
Teresa
xoxo

alison@MyLittleHappyPlace said...

I'm normally a "go for it" kinda gal (total enabler, really), but something tells me you might regret it. Think you'd end up with a more Shabby look than you might be wanting.
Keep us posted!

Ashley said...

I was digging through my old MS Living copies recently, and there was an easy-to-follow tutorial on how to do just this. Here's a short version of the article:

http://www.marthastewart.com/272143/fading-fabrics-how-to

The end result is a faded version, and then you can overdye the fabric afterwards for a unique look.

Stitchfork said...

call Meg at Pigtown!

julielorusso@gmail.com said...

I agree with everyone else. If Meg can't do your slipcover then I have a local guy that has great prices!
Let me know if you want his number.

Debbie said...

no advice here, but I'm still really loving the fabric on your couch!

A.J.Barnes said...

Sure you can bleach it. It will look terrible, but you can bleach it! :)

www.ajbarnesonline.blogspot.com

Majid Ali said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Onira said...

Olá, Muito criativo, e lindo teu blog..
Abraço

Karena said...

Michele I think if you carefully bleached it (not trying to remove all of the color) then dye a grey shade, it could turn out quite nicely. Worth a try!

xoxo
Karena
Art by Karena

Come and enter my New Giveaway from Serena & Lily! You will love it!

Emom said...

Ha! I am sorry, but I am laughing....so many opinions....you would think this was about world peace...I say bleach it! What have you got to loose? It might just be pale pink, weakened fibers, and in need of a good painting, but what the heck, why not?....smiles.

Days at Buttermilk Cottage said...

I wouldn't bleach it. Carefully rip it up and you'll have a great pattern for the slipcover you really want.
Best,
Susan

luverlie said...

Rit has a color remover for using on fabrics that make them take the dyes better or more evenly. I would use this before bleaching. Or at least look up on their site for advice.

http://www.ritdye.com/

vicki archer said...

Sounds like a new slip cover is the answer....xv

Acanthus and Acorn said...

First of all, I love the KWID fern fabric on your sofa, I've got a thing for it in aqua!!! I wouldn't bleach the slipcover because it's probably not going to yield the results you want. I would have a new cover made and save the fabric for toss pillows to use or give to a friend.

Danielle {freshquince} said...

Can't wait to see the after if you do bleach and dye...I say why not try it and blog about the experience. We would love to see how it turns out!

PaintyCait said...

The Martha Stewart method works nicely and just fades the fabric...shabby chic. I have used it on linen union but not on synthetics

strawberrykaren said...

Instead of bleach, try using a color remover; it's available through Dharma Trading Co, among other places.

liz said...

don't use bleach! your fabric will end up patchy and maybe holey. use rit dye remover to get out as much color as you can, then you can dye it. i've pulled color from an all cotton fabric like that.... it started bright peach (it was the eighties) and it ended a natural off white color. i think at that point, you could try to add white dye, or the water/paint idea that someone else mentioned. good luck!

Lauren said...

What did you end up doing? I am in the same predicament.

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