DIY Home Maintenance Tips: How to Waterproof Fabric (7 Steps) | homify
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DIY Home Maintenance Tips: How to Waterproof Fabric (7 Steps)

Nabeela Rahman Avatar Nabeela Rahman


  • 2 glasses of water
  • 2 glasses of white glue
  • 1 tablespoon of alcohol
  • Bowl
  • Paintbrush
  • Plastic cover


Waterproofing fabric makes it easier to maintain, whether it’s the sofa upholstery or clothing. It even helps to maintain canvas shoes or accessories. The homemade waterproofing method I am about to share works on all types of fabrics, especially those with natural fibres. However, it doesn’t work on leather. While there are several ways to waterproof fabric to make it easy to maintain, this one is my favourite as it uses household ingredients. In just 7 steps, you can learn how to make a DIY waterproof coating for fabric that will help to protect it against staining and the accumulation of fungus and bacteria. Moreover, it will prevent the fabric from getting frayed and make it easier to clean.

2 hoursDifficultyEasy

Step 1: Collect the ingredients

Put together all the items you need for making the homemade waterproof sealant. You should have everything at home, but if you don’t, it is easy to find in a store or supermarket.

Step 2: Protect the work surface with a plastic cover

The homemade fabric waterproofing recipe makes a liquid sealant, which when applied to the fabric will penetrate through to the other side. So, to prevent the reverse side of the fabric from sticking to the work surface or gathering dirt, you should cover the area with a plastic sheet.

Step 3: Mix the items

Use a bowl for mixing all the ingredients. The mixture will turn cloudy when the white glue mixes with water. The glue is the waterproof agent, whereas the alcohol and water help the solution to penetrate the fabric easily and maintain its original look.

Step 4: Place the fabric on the covered area

Before you apply the coating, place the fabric on the work area, which you protected with the plastic cover. For printed fabrics, ensure that the patterned side faces down.

Step 5: Apply the homemade waterproof sealant

Use a paintbrush to apply the waterproofing liquid evenly over the fabric, covering the entire area. You don’t want a thick coat, so spread only a thin layer.

Step 6: Allow the fabric to dry

Place the fabric in the sun for around 2 hours until the coating is dry. If you don’t have much sunlight in your home, it could take longer.

Step 7: Homemade waterproof fabric

Once the fabric dries after the application of the waterproofing mixture, you might notice that it is stiffer than it used to be. However, if you spread a thin layer, as I recommended, it will still be malleable. In case you plan to use this technique on clothing, you will need to reapply the coating after a few washes.

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