How to Pinstripe a Car the Easy Way

Customising cars is an artform that’s appreciated by petrol heads around the world, and take a variety of different forms, from extreme eye-catching paint jobs with vibrant graphics through to more understated or subtle decorative flourishes such as Pinstripes that are designed to enhance the shape of the curves and contours of the body work.


Pinstriping goes back to the California hot rod culture of the late 1950s.  During the heyday of the culture, characters like Von Dutch came to prominence, and even today, their work is admired for its legendary status.

Pinstriping can be surprisingly simple

How to Pinstripe a CarDone well, pinstripes on a car look great, and are part of a rich history of customisation.  It is also one of the simplest types of customisations to do well – but even though it is simple to do, you still need to have a good eye for design and shape to be able to get the results.

The keys to good pinstriping are care, patience, and choosing the right pinstriping tape from JTAPE!

Pinstriping Tape

To get a clean, sharp, and perfectly defined line when pinstriping, you should use JTAPE Striping Tape or JTAPE Customising Tape.  Striping tape is pre-cut fine line masking tape with a central section (or sections) that can be removed to mask above and below the line and leave a consistent width along the area that you want to paint.

It makes the job of pinstriping straightforward because it allows you to define the area that you want to paint in one go, and then remove the middle section of tape to reveal the area that will be painted.

Prepare your surface

Good preparation gives good results.

As with any paintjob, getting the surface right is essential.  Clean the surface you are about to pinstripe thoroughly.  Remove dirt along with wax, polish, and grease to leave a perfectly clean paint surface for the fresh paint to adhere to.

Next, apply the JTAPE pinstriping tape along the side of your vehicle.  Press the tape down firmly to remove bubbles and avoid creases that could make the line uneven.  Finally, peel away the release tape sections to create the stripe effect you want.

Finally, mask off the surrounding areas with ordinary JTAPE masking tape.  This protects them from overspray that might take away from the effect of your striping.

An even spraying action is important when pinstriping to get the cleanest possible lines.  Once your paint dry to the touch, but not fully cured, you can gently peel away the masking and striping tapes to reveal your work and allow you to stand back and admire your Von Dutch style result!

Find out more

For more information about buying the right tapes to get a great pinstriping result, please visit our online store, or contact us to find out more about our full range of masking tapes and films.

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