Saturday, August 25, 2012

Chalk Paint

My daughter Kelly first told me about chalk paint.  I did a Google search and read lots of articles.  For anyone who still doesn’t know about chalk paint, you don’t write on this; it is the texture and finish that make this paint unique.

There were lots of articles on how to make your own chalk paint and I read and bookmarked a number of them.  The DIY approach many people had to making their own was about the cost of the Annie Sloan paint at just under $39.00 a quart.

After reading and reviewing other people’s opinions and personal hands on experiences, I decided to invest in the real thing.  Luckily for me there is a distributor not too far away.  I purchased “old white” asking, when buying the paint, if they had any tips that might be useful.  I was told to have a damp brush when applying the final coat.

After looking at Pinterest and admiring the transformations of old dining room hutches to useful studio storage space, I began browsing Craigslist for something that caught my eye, spoke to me, said buy me, and was a bargain.

I lost out to several hutches by a phone call and gave up on the ones where owners were clearly asking way too much and would not bargain.  Perseverance paid off and I finally found a unique hutch with doors and drawers below and leaded glass doors with glass shelving on the top.  A few emails to the seller to ask questions and we closed the deal.  Larry and drove just a few miles away and transported my new project home in two trips.

On the website for Annie Sloan: this why they say their paint is special.

“Why our Paint is Special – Reasons Why It’s Good

Chalk Paint is a very special paint for very many reasons

1. It's the BEST paint for painting furniture by a long way
2. No need to prime or prepare
3.Extremely low VOCs so it is good for the environment
4. You can use it on any surface, indoors and out (the outside of our shop was painted in it- perfect!)
5. You can use the paint by diluting it with water to make a wash to show the wood grain
6. The colours are mixed intelligently and the web site shows how you can adapt your colours for your use
7. It's a girls' paint, but boys can use it too.
8. It's flexible so you can be creative and change your mind
9. It allows your walls to breathe so it is perfect for cottage walls
10. You can use it as an impasto (thickly) - leave the lid off to thicken
11. We've been making it since 1990 so it's tried and tested.”

My hutch is oak and was originally painted green when the previous owner acquired it.  He stripped the hutch down to bare wood but family obligations are the reason he sold it to us.  I didn’t have the heart to tell him that I was going to paint it after he seemed so proud of the fact that he was restoring it.
I started with the base of the cabinet, removing the doors and drawers.  The paint went on smooth and easy--I liked the texture, and it dried fast.  Two coats is what the website stated would cover the furniture.  I did some more online reading and several bloggers said depending on the piece it could take three or four coats to get the required results.

A little more research and I decided I needed a plan B.  If I needed to paint four coats then I was going to use a good primer sealer first and save the good paint for the final coats.  I purchased Glidden Gripper primer/sealer in white (they also sell grey for dark paint) and did all remaining pieces in two coats before applying the Annie Sloan paint.  This not only is a more economical thing to do but made the Annie Sloan paint go on much smoother.  The Glidden Gripper also bonds to everything so there was no sanding or prepping before I used it.

I did not buy the Annie Sloan wax which they recommend, instead buying Renaissance Wax Polish developed by the British Museum.  I have usually finished wood furniture pieces with a clear poly blend so this was all new to me using wax.  Having removed years of old built up wax from a dining room table I was a little hesitant about using wax.  I used a soft lint-free cloth to apply the wax and buff it.  I think I might invest in the Annie Sloan soft wax or The Fiddes & Sons wax and a good round wax brush if I do many more pieces.

This was a learning experience using a new paint and a new wax.  I am thrilled to have my hutch finished and filling it up with treasures to display in a dust free cabinet with storage for art supplies in the drawers and cabinets.

1 comment:

Mercedes said...

Love it!
I just completed my first project using the annie sloan paint in pure white. That's what you used, right?
Much smaller project than yours, though. I did spring for the annie sloan wax and waxing brush and that step was my favorite.
Again, your piece is lovely!

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