5 Best Fabric Paints for Denim

Best Fabric Paints for Denim

When it comes to painting on denim, things can get a little bit tricky. Some fabric paints will have problems on denim. They might not hold up well. Some will crack while others will peel. It’s important, when selecting fabric paint, to look for paints that say they are specially designed to remain flexible and resist cracking and peeling after they’ve dried.


Last summer, I decided to revamp my old denim jacket. It had been sitting in the back of my wardrobe for years and was desperately in need of an upgrade. Inspired by a DIY fashion vlog, I decided to experiment with fabric painting – something I’d never done before.

I opted for the “Tulip 10046125 Dimensional Fabric Paint Party Pack” since it came highly recommended online and provided a variety of colors. Excited and slightly nervous, I sketched a floral design on paper first.

Before getting started, I washed my denim jacket to ensure any residual chemicals were removed. Now it was time for the fun part – painting! The paints were easy to handle, thanks to their squeeze bottles with nozzles. Slowly and carefully, I began tracing over my pencil marks with paint.

The process required patience but turned out to be incredibly therapeutic. By mixing different shades together, I could create various hues that added depth to my design – an unexpected bonus!

Once completed, the vibrant colors truly transformed my outdated jacket into a chic piece of wearable art. However, after a few weeks of wearing (and proudly flaunting) it around town, I noticed that some areas began cracking slightly where there were thicker layers of paint.

Remembering reading about heat setting somewhere online earlier; I decided it was worth a shot. After letting it dry thoroughly again (just in case), I covered the painted area with cloth and ironed over it gently without steam. To my relief, this did help reduce further cracking!

Overall, dabbling in fabric painting opened up a new world of possibilities for me – not just with clothes but also other fabric items like tote bags or cushion covers. Learning from experience though, remember not only choosing quality paint specifically designed for fabrics is important but also appropriately applying and caring afterward is crucial when

SectionContent Summary
Personal ExperienceThe author shares their experience painting a denim jacket with Tulip Dimensional Fabric Paint. They mention the process, the result, and some challenges faced like cracking of paint. They also discuss how heat setting helped in reducing further cracking.
Problem Solving When Painting on DenimThis section provides solutions to common issues faced when painting on denim, such as correcting mistakes, removing unwanted paint, preventing cracking or peeling, ensuring even color application and avoiding bleeding edges.
Fabric Paint for Denim ReviewsFive different fabric paints are reviewed considering their usability on denim. The paints are Jacquard Products Textile Color Fabric Paint, Tulip Dimensional Fabric Paint Party Pack, Tulip Soft Fabric Paint, Delta Creative Ceramcoat Acrylic Paint (Textile Medium), and DecoArt SoSoft Fabric Acrylics Paint.
Fabric Painting: A Comprehensive Guide to Materials and TechniquesThis section provides a detailed guide on fabric painting, including essential tools required, selection of the right fabric paint, mastering application techniques, and important tips to keep in mind.
Fabric Paint for Denim Buying GuideThis section discusses techniques to make the paint adhere well to denim and how to transform acrylic paints to work on denim with a textile medium. Suggestions for pre-washing denim and heat setting the paint are also provided.
Recommended ReadingA list of recommended reading materials for sewing beginners is provided. These cover basic sewing essentials, understanding sewing machines, setting up a sewing room, understanding fabrics, and a virtual tour of a fabric store.


While fabric painting on denim is a fun and creative endeavor, it can also come with its share of challenges. Here are some tips and suggestions to solve common problems:

1. How to Correct Mistakes:

  • If the paint is still wet, quickly blot it out with a damp cloth.
  • For dried paint, you might try gently scraping it off using a dull knife or edge of a credit card. Be careful not to damage the fabric though.

2. Removing Unwanted Paint:

  • Once fabric paint has dried, it’s difficult to remove. However, you can try applying rubbing alcohol to the area and gently scrubbing with an old toothbrush.

3. Preventing Cracking or Peeling:

  • Always pre-wash denim without fabric softener before painting, as this helps the paint adhere better.
  • After painting, let your project dry thoroughly before moving or folding it to prevent cracking.
  • To ensure long-lasting design, heat-set the paint according to manufacturer’s instructions.

4. Ensuring Even Color Application:

  • If your first coat isn’t dark enough, wait for it to dry before adding more layers.
  • Mix your fabric paints thoroughly if you’re finding that the color isn’t consistent.

5. Avoiding Bleeding Edges:

  • If your designs are bleeding at the edges, use painter’s tape or stencils to create sharp lines.

Remember that practice makes perfect – don’t be discouraged by initial difficulties! Experiment on scrap pieces of denim before moving onto bigger projects until you feel confident in your skills.

Best Fabric Paint for Denim

Here are our Fabric Paint for Denim Reviews

1. Jacquard Products TEXTILE-1122 Textile Color Fabric Paint

Jacquard Products TEXTILE 1122 Textile Color Fabric Paint 2.25 Ounce Black


This paint is a popular choice with both beginner and professional artists. The colors are extremely vivid. It does need to be brushed on like a regular paint and is on the thicker side, but also tends to apply smoothly and after the paint dries, it remains very soft. The paint can be used on many different types of fabrics. They are great for painting apparel items, but also work well on household fabrics, on shoes, and on accessories like tote bags.

  • The paint usually holds up well to laundering
  • Available in over 30 different colors
  • Paint remains soft and flexible when it dries and can be used on other mediums like leather, wood, paper, and synthetic fibers as well


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2. Tulip 10046125 Dimensional Fabric Paint Party Pack THE WINNER

Tulip 10046125 Dimensional Fabric Paint Party Pack Permanent 3D Paint for Fashion DIYs Arts Craf


This paint stands out due to its resistance to cracking and peeling, crucial issues when painting on denim. It comes in a variety of colors within one pack, which adds versatility for your projects. The squeeze bottle with a nozzle makes application easy and is suitable for a variety of designs. Furthermore, it’s non-toxic and machine washable which ensures safety and durability.

However, it’s important to consider your specific needs before making a purchase. If you’re looking for softness upon drying or compatibility with different materials, another product might suit you better.

Dimensional Fabric Paint works great with many different types of fabric. Often, fabric paint on denim will tend to crack or peel, but Tulip’s Dimension Paint is resistant to both of those issues, making it a great choice for denim. Tulip paints tend to be quite budget friendly and often come in packages of many different colors.

  • Machine washable
  • The paint comes in squeeze bottles with a nozzle that makes for easy application
  • Non-toxic


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3. Tulip Soft Fabric Paint

Tulip Soft Fabric Paint 4 oz Matte Navy Blue


In addition to making Dimensional Fabric Paint, Tulip also makes their Soft Matte Fabric Paint line. This line of paint won’t get stiff or crack easily, which is great news for painting on denim. This line of paint comes in over twenty different colors.

  • Can be brushed on like regular paint, used with stencils, or stamped on
  • Dries opaque so it can be used on darker backgrounds
  • Dries flexible and tends to wash well


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4. Delta Creative Ceramcoat Acrylic Paint (8-Ounce), 0802 Textile Medium

Delta Creative Ceramcoat Acrylic Paint 8 Ounce 0802 Textile Medium

One problem with fabric paint is that some brands won’t work well with denim since it can crack and peel. A great solution is to make your own fabric paint. Delta Creative Textile Medium can turn many ordinary acrylic paints into fabric paint that will likely work well with denim fabrics. The paint and textile medium should usually be mixed two parts textile medium to one part paint.

  • Able to be washed (machine wash on gentle with mild soap and air dry- prewash denim before applying paint)
  • Penetrates the fabric’s fibers to help the paint remain permanent
  • Usually dries flexible without cracking or peeling


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5. DecoArt DSS24-26 SoSoft Fabric Acrylics Paint

DecoArt DSS24 26 SoSoft Fabric Acrylics Paint 1 Ounce Lamp Black


SoSoft Fabric Paint is one of the softest fabrics paints available. It dries soft and flexible and will not crack or peel, which makes it a good candidate to use on denim fabrics. The paint has excellent coverage and can be brushed on.

  • Bonds to many different fabrics
  • Can be cleaned up with soap and water before the paint dries
  • Dries without any heat setting or medium being applied to the paint


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Fabric Painting: A Comprehensive Guide to Materials and Techniques

Crafting enthusiasts around the globe admit that fabric painting opens a world of expressive possibilities. Whether you aim to design custom clothing, revamp your home decor, or explore a new realm of creativity, understanding the right supplies and techniques is critical. So let’s dive in!

Essential Tools for Fabric Painting

The right tools make all the difference in fabric painting. Here’s what you need:

  1. Fabric Paints: Choose from water-based paints for lightweight fabrics or opaque paints for thicker materials like denim.
  2. Brushes: Different brush sizes allow versatility in creating broad strokes or intricate details.
  3. Sponges: Useful for achieving special effects like stippling.
  4. Stencils & Stamps: Perfect for accurate designs – ideal for beginners!
  5. Fabric Pens & Markers: They offer precision control – an excellent choice for detailing.
  6. Iron: Heat setting the paint post-application ensures permanence.

Selecting The Right Fabric Paint

Choosing fabric paint depends on your project’s nature—whether you’re aiming at freestyle designs on T-shirts or detailed patterns on upholstery.

Consider these factors when selecting your paint:

  • Type of Fabric
  • Desired Finish (opaque, semi-transparent, glossy)
  • Project Size
  • Required Durability

Even within fabric paints, there’s lots to explore – 3D paints elevate your design with texture while glow-in-the-dark varieties add an exciting twist.

Mastering Application Techniques

Effective application techniques are just as crucial as high-quality supplies. Here are some tips to get you started:

Working With Brushes

For broad strokes and filling larger areas, use a broad flat brush. Round brushes are excellent for detailed work and creating fine lines. Always wash your brushes after use to extend their life.

Using Sponges

Sponges create interesting textures and effects in fabric painting—perfect for dabbing paint onto stencils or creating gradient effects.

Incorporating Stencils & Stamps

Stencils provide sharp patterns while stamps offer consistent shapes—both ensure accuracy, especially useful when repeating a pattern across fabrics.

Detailing With Fabric Pens & Markers

These tools provide superior control over fine detailing—great for handwriting text or outlining designs before filling them in with paint.

Ironing For Permanence

To heat set the paint post-application, cover your artwork with a clean cloth and iron it gently (no steam). This ensures color fastness even after washing.

Important Tips To Keep In Mind

A little preparation goes a long way in fabric painting:

Pre-Wash Your Fabrics – remove any chemicals left over from manufacturing which may interfere with the paint absorption process.

Test On A Scrap Piece Of Fabric First – understand how your chosen paint behaves before applying it to your main project.

Remember To Clean Up Promptly – enhance longevity by washing brushes promptly and capping pens tightly after use to prevent drying out.

With this comprehensive guide at hand, begin exploring this rewarding craft today! Remember – practice makes perfect! Happy crafting!

Fabric Paint for Denim Buying Guide

While it might be more difficult to find the right fabric paint for denim, there are paints that will increase your chances of having a successful project. There are also a couple things you can do to help your paint have a longer lifespan and perform to the best of its abilities.

Give Your Paint a Helping hand

One thing you can do to help the fabric paint adhere well to denim and hold up better is to pre-wash your denim fabric or apparel items before you apply the paint. Let the paint dry fully before applying secondary layers if they are needed. Another trick to helping the fabric paint adhere well to denim is to wait until the paint has dried then heat set the denim by placing it in the dryer for 20-30 minutes on medium heat.

Transforming Paint

If you really can’t find a fabric paint that works well for your denim project, you can try and transform acrylic paints to paint on denim with a textile medium. This medium is usually mixed with acrylic paint at a 2:1 ratio (2 parts fabric medium to one part paint).

Most textile mediums will help the paint stay flexible and will prevent against cracking and peeling. These paints do tend to have to be heat set in the dryer after they are dry and should be laundered carefully after.

When it comes to revamping your denim wardrobe, choosing the best paint for denim is essential. With countless options available, it can be overwhelming to determine what paint to use on denim or jeans.

However, we have curated a list of the top recommendations for the best acrylic paint for denim and fabric paint for jeans.

When selecting the best paint for denim, consider using fabric paint specifically designed for jeans. This type of paint adheres well to denim fabric, ensuring excellent durability and longevity.

Not only does fabric paint for jeans offer a wide range of vibrant colors, but it also provides flexibility and a soft finish, making it perfect for painting on denim.

One of the leading contenders for the best fabric paint for jeans is an acrylic-based paint. Acrylic paint offers excellent coverage, making it an ideal choice for denim. Moreover, its water-based formula ensures ease of use and quick drying time, allowing you to create stunning designs on your jeans effortlessly.

Whether you prefer a bold, psychedelic pattern or a delicate, intricate design, the best paint for jeans should cater to your artistic vision. Consider opting for a high-quality acrylic paint designed explicitly for denim to achieve the best results.

These paints are specifically formulated to adhere to denim fibers, ensuring a long-lasting finish that won’t crack or fade easily.

When deciding what paint to use on jeans, keep in mind that the best fabric paint for jeans should be compatible with denim material. Look for paints labeled as suitable for denim or jeans to ensure optimal adherence and flexibility.

The best paint for denim or jeans should be fabric paint specifically designed for this purpose. Acrylic-based paints offer excellent coverage, flexibility, and durability, making them an ideal choice for painting on denim fabric.

Choose a high-quality paint designed explicitly for denim, and let your creativity flow as you transform your jeans into unique works of wearable art.

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