How to Paint Sunflowers on Fabric

How to Paint Sunflowers on Fabric, specifically jeans. An easy step-by-step lesson on how you can gussy up any old pair of jeans with paint. Have fun and create one-of-a-kind apparel!

Happy Sunflower painting day! Yes, today I am going to show you how to paint sunflowers on fabric.  Jeans to be specific.

Painting sunflowers on fabric is fairly easy, even for a beginner.  On jeans (or most darker fabrics) we need to add an extra step.  An undercoat of white.


Because it helps to get more vibrancy from your colors.  I like my colors to be bright but if this is not that big of a deal for you then go ahead and skip that step.

Paint Sunflowers on Fabric.

The video is linked at the end of this post.

In the video I do the center slightly different and in different colors to show you how you can switch it up.  Plus the video shows how I do the leaves which I left out here but I have an entire blog lesson and video on leaves.

I start with some older jeans, if I am scouring thrift stores I like to score some jeans on the cheap to paint.  This would be really great on a jeans jacket or denim skirt too.  Wash and dry them, make sure NOT to use any fabric softener, that can hinder the paint from soaking in.

Pick your spot to paint on your jeans.   On this project I am using Plaid FolkArt Multi-Surface paints but Plaid also make Fabric paint, the choice it up to you. (many prefer the fabric paints as they remain softer)

With a #12 Flat brush I outline my center then I paint on petal shapes using my petal/leaf stroke I demonstrated in my Basic Strokes post and video. (a link to that will be posted at the end of this lesson)

I let that dry or speed up drying using a blow dryer.  Then I use either the #12 flat with Yellow Ochre to create the back petals using my petal leaf stroke.

I let that dry.  With the help of a blow dryer it takes a few minutes.  Most of the time I have a few projects going at a time and I move on to something else and let things dry on their own.

Fabric Painting Sunflowers, a great way to embellish jeans, jackets, totes or skirts! Make gifts and wearable art.

Next I under paint with titanium or wicker white and the #12 flat brush the front strokes in between the backstrokes (the yellow ochre ones)

The colors I use for the front petals is a double load of Daffodil and Moon Yellow.  I use the same stroke as the underpainting and the #12 flat brush.  The two colors work well together and having the brush double loaded like this will make the petals just a bit more interesting.  In my video I only used one color.  Stroke all the way around until you have all the front petals done.

On this sunflower I am doing the darker brown center, in the video, I show you how I do a green and yellow center with a different technique.  Here I use Burnt Umber and stroke in a circle with my 3/4″ brush.

Just fill it in. Dip a corner of your brush into one of the yellow colors, the Yellow Ochre will do just fine. Stroke in some highlights, a C shape in the center then a few loose strokes around the edges.

If you want the center to be a bit darker you can dip the corner of your brush into some Licorice Black and dab in some, you Burnt Umber will still be a bit wet, the black will blend in a bit.

And there you have a lovely sunflower hand painted on your jeans or fabric.

Fabric Painting Sunflowers, a great way to embellish jeans, jackets, totes or skirts! Make gifts and wearable art.

When you watch the video you will see I painted the leaves first so the sunflower lays over top of the leaves.  This is optional but it is how I usually paint them.  The sunflower can be painted alone and it still is a great motif for your items.

easy tutorial

How to Paint Leaves

Paint all sorts of leaves. Fat leaves, skinny leaves, long or short. Learn how you can paint leaves one easy stroke at a time.

The pattern to use is located in the Resource Library, just sign up to gain access.

Want to see the video?

Paint Supplies for this Project:
Plaid FolkArt Multi Surface paint
Licorice Black
Burnt Umber
Yellow Ochre
Daffodil Yellow
Moon Yellow
Citrus Green
Textile Medium (this is optional, it helped the paint to flow better over the fabric)
Donna Dewberry One Stroke Brush Set

Here is the heat setting instructions directly from PlaidOnline.

For a full list of all the supplies I use when I paint CLICK HERE

More Painting Tutorials for You!
How to Paint Sunflowers for Beginners
How to Paint Leaves
Basic Brush Strokes

Happy Painting!

Please enjoy and share!

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