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Up-cycling with Chalk Paint!

Up-cycling with Chalk Paint!

When we moved from an apartment into a house we found that came with a certain lack of furniture. With a larger than rent mortgage to pay; we tried to be as thrifty yet as stylish as possible with our décor and that is where the chalk paint has came in. 

To be honest, I am personally a fan on unique pieces of furniture so when I found out about Chalk paint a number of years ago, I was instantly in love. I joined every Annie Sloan Facebook group I could find, followed blogs, pinned pins and even purchased all of Annie Sloan’s books. The only challenge I found was the availability of purchasing Annie Sloan paint; she seems to be very selective with the stores she choses to sell in and I have have found it hard to find.

Another Annie Sloan con for some people may be her colors selection does tend to be somewhat limited as well – This doesn’t phase me too much mind you because I am pretty “safe” with my chalk painting.

I have in the past, and do love working with Annie Sloan paint. Annie Sloan is fantastic you can paint on wood, metal, plastic EVEN FABRIC and you can have classy flawless finish or a shabby chic look depending on your style and the method you use. Since I did run into the issue of availability in the US I started looking at other brands. So when I found Valspar’s version of chalk paint in Lowes I was overjoyed. – I am not sure if Valpar’s brand works on fabric as well but I have painted wood, metal and plastic with it and it has worked perfectly. Valspar is a great chalk paint and I have made some gorgeous pieces with it and another pro is Valspar also offers a wider variety of colors too. As chalk painting becomes increasingly popular; more and more brands are releasing their own versions – so little by little, I may start playing with other brands too. Over the years I have made a couple of pieces with chalk paint you can check them all out here:

Here is a bedside table I up-cycled for my sisters new flat, I used Annie Sloan Paint here. Table: Hand down Paint: $40 (two colors) Wax: $24.95

This next item was a direct #pinterestcopy with an amazing Goodwill mirror find, I used Valspar Chalk Paint for this.

Frame Cost me: $10, Paint $30, Wax Leftover

I forgot to take any before pics of this one but these tables and chairs were completely wooden and I painted parts of them white, also re-stained the wood to give it that rich honey glow

The Next was for our own bedroom as I wanted very specific Bedside tables

Shelves cost me $15 in Total, Paint $30. Wax Leftover

Then here is some Bedroom Furniture Upcycling I did – just loved the facelift!

Then there was this Dry Sink tuned “dumping station” for my kids School bags and School work. I’m so happy with how this turned out!

Dry Sink $25

Paint $30

Wax Leftovers

Then I returned to Annie Sloan after finding a nearby stockist…. I had fun playing with and mixing the colors and upcycling this writing desk…

And withh the left over paint I worked on this bedside table and coffee table – which was finished off with gold and silver gilding wax…

My favorite were also these bedside tables which were used for our guest room

Not too Shabby right?!

So the number one reason that I LOVE chalk paint is really because I am lazy! I like things to happen fast and I will usually always find the quickest and easiest way to do them. Chalk paint is AMAZING because you rarely need to sand and you never need to prime when using it; you can literally just slap the paint right on. Yup SLAP IT ON, I’ve even had my 6 and 4 year old do it.

My latest project was upcycling this Console/Hutch that had been sitting in a storage unit for 2 years. The Hutch is beautiful and I would have loved to have done something with it (maybe taken the glass out and added some chicken wire to make it farm housey) but we don’t have the wall space for it at this point in time. But I definitely had use for the Console/Buffet so got to work on it right away.

A number of my friends have requested I go through the steps of what I did so I just thought I’d break it down for everyone.

Now there are master Chalk Painters, Furniture Flippers and UpCyclers alike out there so I suggest you also check out their blogs to learn more about the best tips and tricks as well as seeing just how amazing this paint can be and how far it will take you….. I have seen people do amazing things with it… so def go out there into the world of chalk paint and see for yourselves!!! But for now….

This is:


Step 1: What I Used

  • Chalk Paint – I chose Valspar’s Medium Base Chalk Paint and Added the Color “Kids Gloves” 
  • Valspar’s Sealing Wax
  • Foam Roller
  • Paint Brush – I like the Purdy Brand the best.
  • Paint Tray
  • Mixing stick
  • Tarp or floor protection
  • A piece of furniture to paint 😉
  • A number of rags.
  • A well vented room, although the chalk paint is non-toxic, when applying the wax; it is suggested that you apply it in a well ventilated area.

Step 2 – Prep the furniture

So for this I just gave it a wee wipe down with cleaning wipes and got all of the dust off, I lightly sanded some scratches that I found on the corners and truth be told I could have maybe sanded a couple more spots to make it a bit more cleaner, but I kind of liked the character that the bumps and nicks gave to it. for this I was going for a bit more of a farmhouse feel. Annie Sloane does sometimes suggests when you have extra oily and varnished surfaces to clean it first with low odor mineral spirits to get rid of any crud or avoid any or varnish oil bleed-through. I probably should have done something like this with this piece as I did have some cracking but instead, once I saw the cracking, I used some Kiltz primer and then later painted back over it. -Thankfully an easy enough fix.

I took out the drawers and took off the doors and all of the handles and hardware and put them to the side.

( I placed them in a container to make sure that I didn’t lose anything as I wanted to reuse them all)

STEP 3 – Start Painting

Yup that’s right; no excessive sanding or priming needed, I just got painting. I started with the drawers and doors just to see how the paint was working

Then I moved them to the side to dry and got to work on the hutch.  

I usually use a foam roller for all of my pieces but for this I wanted it a little more rustic so decided to use the roller but then go over it after with the brush to give it the “brushed look”. I also used the brush for all of the corners and detail I applied one coat and left it to dry over night. The can says it dries within one hour to the touch – the can lies! lol.

Another tip I had when painting flat top furniture was to turn it upside down and to paint the top last. This was the first time I did that but I was glad that I did. definitely worked better for me. PAINT KEEP TIP. While waiting for your coats to dry and overnight – Place your paint tray, brushes and rollers in a “tied tight” sealed plastic bag, then the next morning it will be ready to use again.

STEP 4 – 2nd Coat The next morning I applied the second coat of paint, just used the same easy slap on and paint method then finely cleaned it up with the brush strokes – I like to think of the fence painting in the Karate Kid when I do this.

You can really see the difference here of one coat versus two. Its actually also a really cool Shabby-Chic look with just the one coat, if this is the look you are going for it can also be really nice.

I slapped on my second coat and left it to dry for a couple of hours Later that evening I flipped it back over and did my first coat on the top. I again let that dry overnight, then added the second coat very quickly the next morning.

STEP 5 – Putting it back together

Since the drawers and doors were dry I started to reassemble them all – this was a fun jigsaw of what went where and which way up it all was – thankfully I had that before picture to reference. Some mistakes were made and touch ups of paint had to be done because of that.

I did some touch ups and actually added a third coat of paint to my sides and the top. That was just a personal choice. I normally just do the two coats. This was also where I had to fix my cracking paint with the Kiltz primer. The cracking has never happened to me before, but this piece had a lot of old varnish on it, so I am thinking that’s why it happened.

STEP 6 – Apply the wax

Your wax can chose the look you want vs clear or antique, light or dark – so be careful what tub you pick up… I usually use clear.

Now that it was all dry and put back together it was time to apply the wax. I just think of this as like giving it a really deep clean polish. I take my rag and the wax and I just go to town smoothing it into the whole item. Some people like using waxing brushes, I just like a good old rag and I jut rub it into the piece. You don’t want too use too much wax when applying, but do apply generously “like applying lotion” this just seals everything in.

The best way to describe it is to rub it right into the wood, you don’t want the wax sitting on top of the wood, you want it in the wood.

I will often wait 24 hours and repeat this process again. Be sure to not miss any spots, you will notice them. This is the final finish to your piece. Here is a tutorial I found  on YouTube for wax application: Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Wax Clear Tutorial #3 Locksley Lane

STEP 7 – Admire your work And Hey Presto You are Done! Take a step back, admire your piece and think about how cool it is that you brought something back to life.


  Thank you so much for stopping by, I cant wait to see what projects you guys come up with. Please feel free to share them below.

Best Wishes Georgia xxx

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