I recently acquired some burgundy burlap to use in re-upholstering some straight backed chairs. Problem is, the color comes off if you rub hard against it (like sitting down!). Any suggestions on how I can set the dye job on this material? Returning it isn't an option.

Thanks, Jackie

  • I updated my answer with a solution that might work for you Apr 20, 2018 at 17:31

1 Answer 1


It is hard to guess what went wrong in the dying process, but I am assuming you have a natural jute fiber burlap. You will probably have to dye the fabric again. What usually works is Rit - which you can get at pretty much a y fabric store. Be careful, it is a little caustic and will stain your skin.

If you want to try to fix the dye, don’t use salt or vinegar - caustic soda might work, but you probably want to get retayne as it is described here. Apparently also available at quilting and fabric stores, I must say that I do not know the product but the science seems sound.

  • 1
    Thanks for your help, especially the lead to the Retayne page. Lots of good information there. Apr 21, 2018 at 19:48
  • @JackieBell if it answered your question, please feel free to mark this response as correct. Apr 21, 2018 at 23:18

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