To see the finished product, check out my Aging Cream Finish Over Chalk Paint post!
I've recently fallen in love with chalk painting. I can't seem to get enough and I've been been painting everything in sight in my living room. By no means am I a chalk painting expert. I'm definitely a chalk painting newbie and I want to show you all how easy it is. I'll warn you now though, there are lots of photos!
Chalk Painting for Newbies by a Newbie
There are many different brands of chalk paint out there and even recipes on how to make your own chalk paint. I really don't know the difference between the brands and quite honestly I went with CeCe Caldwell's because there were a few colors that I was drawn to. I wanted to give my living room a very monotone yet bright cottage look. Some people may think I'm crazy for painting my furniture to match the color of my walls, but the end result turned out fantastic and I'm very happy with it!
I purchased my CeCe Caldwell's products from Shabby Lane - a local authorized Retailer & Distributor of CeCe Caldwell's Paints. I'm happy to support small businesses here in Wisconsin so when I found ShabbyLane.com and saw that I could order the products online, I went for it. The first thing I did, which I highly suggest to everyone is that you order the paint chart first. Don't rely on your computer screen for the colors and bring the paint chart into the room where your piece will sit. Lighting changes everything.
After I received the paint chart, I placed my order with Shabby Lane for Chesapeake Blue and Young Kansas Wheat. I also purchased the Clear Wax, Dark Aging Cream, and wax brush. I read over the instructions before I started but soon realized that not only can you not screw up, but you end up creating your own technique. The one thing I knew for sure before I started was that I did not want any of my pieces to have a shabby chic look. It's just not something I was going for. I wanted more of an aged rustic cottage or farmhouse look. I wanted the pieces to look like they have been sitting in a barn or attic for ages.
I've painted 6 pieces of furniture so far but never got around to taking before and after pictures. During the painting process of this last piece that I did, I made sure to take photos and ever remembered to take a before photo.
The Project (Before)
So here is a before photo of the console table. Yes, it's brand new and I'm sure there are plenty of people who think I'm nuts for painting a new piece, but I bought it with the intention of painting it. It was the size and storage that I was looking for. The color on the other hand was just all wrong for me. It's way too Mission style and that is not a look I wanted in my living room.
The best part about chalk painting is the prep work because there is no prep work! Aside from throwing a drop cloth under for incidental spills and taking off the hardware, that is it! There is no sanding and no removing the stain or varnish. Chalk paint sticks to pretty much everything and can be used on pretty much everything including fabric!
Pour the paint into a container instead of dipping the brush back in the can over and over. Chalk paint dries very quickly and I don't think it's a good idea to leave the can open while painting.
The 1st Coat
Here is a photo to show how well the paint adheres to a finished wood surface.
The entire console table took me about 30 minutes to paint the first coat. Although I liked how it looked with just the first coat, I really wanted it to be blue.
Here is a close-up of the dried Young Kansas Wheat. To me, this is very shabby chic. Pretty, but not the look I was going for.
The instructions say to let the paint dry for 2 - 3 hours between coats but honestly I did not. I think I waited a half hour. The paint was definitely dry within that half hour. I think it may have something to do with the dry winter weather we are having. Maybe in a more humid climate you should wait longer in between coats.
One thing I would like to recommend is that when you pour the paint into your container, wipe off the paint on lip of the can. It's quite thick and the more paint that gets into the lip of the can, the harder it is to get the lid to seal.
The 2nd Coat
When the chalk paint is wet, it's much darker. What is nice about that is you can tell the paint is wet or dry just by looking at it.
Aging the Piece
I wanted the console table to have an aged and worn look. Before I finished the piece with wax, I took a very damp soft cloth and ran it over the edges and random spots. You can also do this with brown kraft paper or fine grit sandpaper. Make sure that your cloth is very, very damp though. You don't want to rub off too much paint.
The Finishing Step
The final step, which is actually the most tedious compared to how easy the painting and aging is, would be the finishing step. There are several different finishing products to choose from. I went with the Aging Wax and the basic Clear Wax. I was a bit afraid of these products at first but what I learned is that if you put too much on, you can just wipe if off with a cloth. Also, I was unclear whether the Aging Wax or Clear Wax goes on first, but what I learned is that it works either way. For the console table, I used only the Clear Wax for the finish. Chances are I will change my mind and add the Aging Wax because the rest of the pieces in the room have that dark aged look to them.
I'm going to copy the CeCe Caldwell's instructions below on how to apply the Clear Wax. I do think using a piece of cardboard or thick paper plate was very helpful.
Clear Wax should be applied in a thin, even coat with a flat bottom brush or lint-free cloth. Apply sparingly. Always use less wax than you think is needed. It is best to apply several thin layers than one heavy layer. Wipe away excess. The surface should then be thoroughly buffed with a dry cloth, piece of brown kraft paper or finishing pad after 2-4 hours. For an even hard finish, the wax can be rebuffed 2-4 days after the initial buffing. This product requires several weeks to fully cure. Freshly waxed surfaces should be kept free of moisture and heavy use for about a week or so. For continued shine and protection, re-apply the clear wax every 6-12 months under normal conditions.
The wax will make the paint appear much darker at first but it does eventually lighten up.
The Project (After)
So here is the final product! I hope you like it as much as I do! Chalk painting is not scary one bit and I'll be sure to post the other projects that I have completed. Chalk painting is a great way to change the look of the room without having to purchase new furniture. You can easily find older pieces at Goodwill and give them a new life! Chalk painting with CeCe Caldwell's paint can be done indoors at any time because it is non-toxic and odor free and it washes right off with soap and water.
The paint contains NO acrylic co-polymers, solvents, formaldehyde, ammonia, ethylene glycol or toxic heavy metals. The minerals are clay, porcelain clay and chalk blended into a water based solution. The paint is packaged in recycled plastic containers. Our wax is made from insect and plant sources. It also has very low odor and is packaged in recycled plastic containers.