Chalk paint is highly appreciated for its user-friendliness and versatility. You can use this type of paint for rejuvenating the look of old furniture. From walls and wood furniture to metal or fabric elements, chalk paint is simple to use and has the power to turn a bland furniture piece into a focal point in the room. If you want to learn how to take advantage of chalk paint’s potential, we have some tips and recommendations to obtain the desired look regardless of the specific makeover project you had in mind.
Those that hate the typical paint smell will love chalk-style paint which is virtually odorless. Another advantage of this paint type is that it dries much faster compared to conventional paint. While it’s a joy to use and you can get the hang of it pretty quickly, it’s still important to understand the behavior of chalk paint so you can create stunning looks with it no matter what. Sometimes chalk paint seems to work strangely so it’s recommended to check out the following guide to make the most out of your chalk paint project.
1. Don’t Worry About Prep Work
If you choose a high-quality chalk paint like this model from Amazon, you will be able to avoid going through the usual sanding and priming work beforehand. In some difficult cases like when the surface is too damaged, it’s still recommended to deal with prep work. Chalk paint can be successfully used right away thanks to its powerful adherence, even to more difficult surfaces. Check for damaged areas or particularly uneven spots on the surface you’re working with to figure out if you can go ahead without any prep work.
2. Thin and Thicken the Chalk Paint
Thanks to its water-based formulation, chalk paint allows thinning and thickening without any extra effort. Small quantities of cool water should do the trick if you plan on thinning it. As for the thickening process, we recommend to simply leave the lid open for some time. It’s good to know that chalk paint won’t end up with a skin on the surface compared to other paint types. Just stir the thickened chalk paint and enjoy its new texture.
3. Waxing Can Improve the Texture
Some people don’t really like the specific texture of chalk paint which feels dry. The solution to this problem involves the use of a special wax that enhances the texture making it feel more supple. As a bonus, the wax will also protect the final finish. Despite its white appearance, the wax has a transparent color so this means it won’t affect the look of the painted surface. There’s also the option to use dark wax if you prefer a darker shade of color but we recommend adding clear wax before it for best results.
4. Go for a Distressed Look
Anyone who likes the illusion of age on wood will be glad to find out that chalk paint can be ideal for distressing. It’s all about doing some prep work correctly before you go ahead and start painting the furniture piece. We recommend using fine-grit sandpaper and choosing the areas carefully so the resulting look will resemble an authentic vintage item. It’s a good idea to insist on some specific areas as opposed to distressing all of them. Candlesticks and dressers can benefit a lot from this kind of distressed aesthetic.
5. Use the Correct Brush
While many people focus on choosing the right chalk paint, it’s also important to make sure you use the right brush for the job. Avoid low-quality bristle brushes which can leave unsightly streaks or might even fall apart resulting in bristles drying in the paint. Spending a little extra on the brush can pay off in the long run, especially if you plan on using chalk paint for other projects in the future. One of the best brushes for chalk paint comes from the Clearcut Series made by Purdy which is available on Amazon.
6. Try the Dry-brush Technique
The dry-brush technique is great for those times when you need to blend lower colors with upper ones on your furniture piece. The idea is to avoid adding too much paint on the lower level. You start by dipping the tip of the brush in chalk paint then allowing it to start drying on the bristles for a short time. It’s important to add very little chalk paint on the brush and to wait long enough so the paint gets to a drier consistency.