tip trick tuesday!! diy chalk paint and first project using it.. yardsale chair

in the past year pete and i have become yardsale junkies.. waking up early and hitting all the ones in boulder and even venturing to henderson to see what they have.. we've picked up some fun stuff.. a few weeks ago i came across an awesome butcher block table, i initially bought it for shell's back patio but then while cruising pinterest that night i found restoration projects using the annie sloan chalk paint.. i then stayed up way to late watching how to videos on restoring furniture and decided poor shell was not going to get the table i was going to chalk paint it... i knew a shop in boulder sold it because i mosied into their shop one day while i waited for the dogs to get done grooming, i checked their website and sure enough they were open on sunday, i did a little woop woop and couldn't wait to get started.. so the next morning i awoke way to early and made pete watch several tutorial videos {which he was not to happy about} and he said "well let's head to lowes and see what we can find the annie sloan store in boulder aka bloom doesn't open for 4 more hours"... so we headed to lowes and asked the guy if they sold chalk paint.. he said sadly no and then proceeds to tell pete that a 1 quart can of annie sloan's paint can be as much at $50.00 and the paint brushes she recommends are between $40-50 dollars.. pete takes one look at me and says we are not redoing an $8.00 table with $100.00 worth products.. the lowes guy, my hero, says well you can make the paint for about $3.00.. so pete looks at me and says google that "stuff" {yeah he didn't say stuff}.. so 1 hour later and only about $20.00 in products we head home for me to start my first chalk paint project... we decided to start with the chair for our first project, i bought it at a yard sale last year for $2.00 and it seemed like the perfect item to practice on.. the table would be next.
now let me tell you if you have never used chalk paint it goes against every painting rule there is.. at first pete was hanging over my shoulder telling me all the things i was doing wrong until i reminded him it isn't supposed to look perfect, the whole idea is to make it look weathered and worn.. so he finally zipped his lip and let me do it..
lucky for me we had a lot of the supplies already at home.. pete has a pretty awesome garage full of all kinds of things he has collected, bought, inherited, ect. over the years.. but i think you can pick some up here and there and they can be used over and over again and i am going to say that the plaster of paris is going to last me through several projects..

you begin with 1/2 cup {4 oz} of plaster of paris and 1/2 cup {4 oz} of warm water..

mix the plaster of paris and water thoroughly.. we bought those paint little buckets at lowes for a buck..

once it's thoroughly combined you add 1 1/2 cups {12 oz} of your paint.. we had a bright white from another project and thought we would start off with that..

it was a little to bright so we added just a smidge, maybe a tablespoon of a beige we had.. remember this was a practice run, when i finally did the table we had our act together.. ha ha 

a lot of the tutorials say don't sand your piece it's not necessary.. well that concept drove pete crazy so we sanded it a little bit and basically cleaned it up with a damp cloth..

i added one coat.. your supposed to paint in a criss cross pattern not going with the grain.. well again that was to much for pete to handle and until i finally told him to go do something else he wasn't letting me do it the way it was recommended... men *eyeroll* we did end up only doing one coat because we liked the look of it.. for the second project, the table, i did two coats..

finally he become more open and even saw that the "non conform" way was making the chair turn out pretty neat..

i used a 100 grit sanding block and file from pete's tool box to get the weathered look i was trying to achieve..

since part of the chair already had white paint on it i did have to put some elbow grease into the sanding on those parts.. 

pete inherited this huge paintbrush from his grandpa and it worked out perfect for getting all the sanding dust from the chair..

so again the annie sloan wax is about 45 bucks a jar and that wasn't going to happen... so i ran up to ace hardware in boulder and bought min wax finishing wax in a natural color.. my aunt was an artist and after she passed away i got a bag of her brushes and the brush above was in it.. so no need to buy a 50.00 annie sloan brush..

i applied a coat and you can see the difference it adds a richness to the project.. it's pretty cool.. {using the round fat end paint bush you apply the wax and then with a clean lint free rag, i used an old t shirt, you wipe off the wax, leaving a beautiful sheen behind} basically wax on wax off.. i wanted to put on a head band and watch the karate kid but pete put the kibash on that idea.. 

the clear wax just gives it a neat look..

here it with a complete coat of the clear wax.. i could've finish here and been very pleased with the result.. but... 

 i did wanted to add one more level of dimension by using the dark wax.. ace didn't have it so i again googled that stuff and found directions on how to make the dark wax..

i took 2 tblsp. of the natural wax and put it in a mason jar.. i took one of the empty little buckets and filled it with hot hot water i placed my mason jar in the water bucket just enough to get the glass warm and make the paste easy to work with..

i then added a several plastic spoonfulls of a dark walnut stain we had and stirred it around until it reached a pretty dark muddy color..

then with another fat end round brush and wearing gloves i began to apply it.. gloves are pretty necessary because the dark wax will make your fingernails and cuticles a dark icky color.. 

in my other hand i had 1000 grade soft steel wool..

 and after applying the dark wax you let it sit for a few seconds then with your steel wool you rub over it removing all excess wax... it gets a little muddy so doing it in small sections is recommended.. if it gets to muddy after you steel wool it use a clean lint free rag and wipe it off with a little pressure..

i loved the look i was achieving..

now certain pieces i wouldn't do the dark wax on but for a chair that is going to sit outside under a patio the dark "grungy" look was what i wanted..

for my first project i think it turned out pretty neat..

i am sure once i have done a few more projects i will realize all the flaws in my little chair and want to do it again.. and that's the beauty of chalk paint you can .. i  can add another layer of paint maybe in a different color all together and achieve an entirely different look.. i can 't wait

and this is my little chair finished!! below is the table nearly finished.. check back next week and i will show you all the pictures for the table and then if you can believe it i am going to start on my bathroom cabinets.. i am officially obsessed with calk paint!!
and remember to
enjoy and get d.i.y.'ing!!


  1. That's an adorable chair! You've made it even lovelier by giving it a blue coat. I've always liked those classical wooden pieces. Together with the right accents and decor, they make a house a cozy and well loved. Thank you for this DIY post, BTW. Stay creative!

    Premier Building Supply


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