Although there are alot of products on the market today, chalk paint is still my favourite.
There are two main reasons why I like it: chalk paint is perfect for creating “antique time worn” pieces because it is a forgiving paint and, by making it yourself, can be extremely cheap.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m always open to trying new products and there are alot of great products out there that are much more time convenient but I have a tendency to be frugal and when deciding to use the ready to use products, costs can add up very quickly.
I enjoy finding ways to complete a project without spending alot of money and also using what I have on hand. It’s aligned with my philosophy of renewing and reusing. I think you should be able to beautify your home no matter the budget-big or small.
The advantages of ready to use chalk paint is that you save time-no mixing necessary and will usually keep as long as regular paint if stored properly. It is also thicker than the recipe I use so applying is easier as it doesn’t drip as much as the homemade one.
Chalk paint adheres to most surfaces. I’ve painted most surfaces with chalk paint-wood, plastic, melamine, thermo plastic, wicker, pleather, and fabric. For now we’ll stick to wood…
I usually make my own when covering large items and it also gives me a chance to use up paint that is lying around in my workshop. What I also do is check in the reject bin in the paint department at hardware stores (you know the paint that was mixed wrong or that the customer didn’t want) for paint that is reduced in price. You’d be surprised the nice colours that end up in there and how cheap you can get them!
Here’s the recipe that I use. You can add or reduce the water depending on how thick or thin you prefer it.
DIY quick recipe:
1 cup (250 ml) latex paint
1/2 cup (125 ml) warm water
1/2 cup (125 ml) plaster of Paris
-Mix water and plaster of Paris well to disolve lumps in an old measuring cup (I got some measuring cups fro the dollar store that I use strictly for mixing my paints)
-Add your mixture to the paint and, using a plastic container with a tight lid, close the lid and shake well.
-Don’t make too much because it doesn’t always store well and can dry up.
Chalk paint dries fast and when sanded is easy to distress.
For a look that gives the impression that it has been painted numerous times, apply vaseline to strategic places in between coats. The paint will not adhere and reveal the colour underneath.
Use white paper glue to crackle your paint-alot a cheaper version from store bought crackling medium.
Finish off your pieces with a wax finish-either beeswax or a finishing paste (I like to work with MinwaxFinishing Paste because it gives it a hard protective finish and a soft sheen).
You can also opt for the store bought chalk paint but I have mixed feelings about the finish-I find it more difficult to distress. It covers well and will give an ultra mat finish.
Sometimes I splurge and get a colour that I don’t have for smaller projects.
Americana Decor Chalky Finish is the brand I use the most often.
I like idea of spreading some newspaper on my dining room table and tackling a small project while the supper is cooking 😉
Whatever the product you choose, just rememeber that we all have our preferences and what someone might like, you might not. Some product lines have different colours. Basically they all pretty much similar to work with-all depends on the availability and price that one chooses. Even if you decide to make your own, the important thing is to have fun creating. Don’t be afraid-worse thing that could happen is that you hate it and then you’ll have to start over and that’s how we get better and better! Practise and experiment 😉
What have you created with chalk paint?