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Trend Alert: Clothing That’s Painted On

April 28, 2010

Art imitates life. And fashion imitates art.

Don’t believe me? Check out some of the latest styles from your favorite designers that feature hand-painted details, and learn how you can score this look for less after the pics.

Artist Nathalie Lete’s collaboration with Anthropologie via Design*Sponge

Hand-painted water color clutch from Amanda Pearl

Hand-painted Paper Crane Cardigan from Leifsdottir

Hand-painted stripe shirt from Gryphon

Just a touch of gold paint on the hem of the ruffle, by Fernanda Carneiro

Hand-painted silk dress from Prabal Gurung’s Spring collection

Chris Benz hand-painted organza Doris Party Skirt

For those of you interested in trying this trend, keep in mind that scoring hand-crafted details comes at a price. But don’t fret – this is a trend you can easily recreate at home.


A basic piece of clothing (such as a black and white striped top or a denim skirt)

A paintbrush (you decide the thickness according to the look you want to create)

Some water-proof paint (so that you can wash your garment)

An erasable fabric marker (if you’re not into the free-hand thing)


1. Start with a clean canvas. Be sure the garment is washed and completely dry.

2. Pull the fabric taut to eliminate wrinkles by slipping a piece of over-sized cardboard between the layers. This will also stop the paint from bleeding through the other side.

3. Go at it! Start with something simple, such as polka dots of the same color. Or for the more ambitious, paint an abstract flower or graphic pattern in the upper corner of your top or along the hemline of your skirt.

Submit any of your painted clothing photos or ideas to Unedited – I’d love to see them!

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