Getting Started With Chalk Painting Furniture

Chalk painting furniture is a wonderful way to breathe new life into your old furniture or thrift store finds. Painting furniture is a fun and unique way to transform them into works of art with a vintage charm. And it is Ideal for anyone seeking to add a personal touch to their home. Painting furniture also requires no prior painting experience. In this blog post, we’ll dive into learning how getting started with chalk painting furniture can open up a whole new world for you.

And if you are new to painting furniture you’ll find helpful tips and tricks for getting started here – Chalk Mineral Paint Basics.

Getting Started With Furniture Painting

What Is Chalk Paint?

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I wrote a post which you may find helpful that talks more about this type of paint – What Is Chalk Paint. But, here’s a short synopsis about chalk paints.

Chalk type paint is a water-based paint that contains minerals, typically calcium carbonate, which gives it its distinctive matte finish. This type of paint typically adheres well to a variety of surfaces and is popular due to its durability and ease of use. Chalk and mineral style paints are especially popular among furniture painters looking for a fun and easy medium that is available in many colors.

Part of chalk paint’s popularity is in part due to Annie Sloan, who many consider to be the Mother of chalk paint. She developed her Chalk Paint brand which increased the popularity of this paint over latex paint for furniture. Read more about Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in these posts:

Benefits Of Using Chalk Mineral Style Paint

There are of course several benefits to using chalk mineral style paints over regular paints like latex, usually used more for walls.

  • Ease of Application: Chalk paint is incredibly user-friendly, making it a good choice for beginners. It adheres well to most surfaces without extensive prep work, like sanding.
  • Rich, Matte Finish: Chalk paint provides a beautiful, velvety, matte finish. This distinctive look adds character and depth to furniture pieces.
  • Versatility: The paint can be used on a wide range of surfaces, including wood, metal, ceramic, and even fabric, providing a wide range of creative possibilities.
  • Quick Drying Time: Chalk paint tends to dry faster than most other paints. Many painters can complete projects even in one day which is fun!
  • Easily Distressed: For those who love the vintage or shabby chic look, chalk paint is easily distressed with a little bit of sanding. And chalk paint is typically easy to blend creating beautiful artist finishes.
  • Eco-Friendly: Most chalk paints are low or no VOCs, making them an environmentally friendly choice than many traditional paints. And they can be used indoors. And soiled brushes clean up easily with soap and water.
  • Wide Range of Colors: Chalk paints come in a wide array of colors, and it’s also easy to mix paints to create your own custom shades.

So, hopefully reading those benefits helped convince you why you should try chalk paints.

Favorite Chalk Mineral Paints For Painting Furniture

When you are getting started with chalk painting furniture, you’ll need to gather a few essential supplies. The first and most obvious item is the paint itself. There are several brands of chalk style paints on the market, one of which is the Annie Sloan brand I mentioned above.

Others include Dixie Belle Paints, Wise Owl, Amy Howard, and Country Chic. Each has little differences, notably the colors available and slight differences in the paint texture and finish. Each touts various advantages in using their brand. I’ve tried several and like most painters, I have my favorites.

Another couple of brands to consider are the Rust-Oleum or Behr chalk style paints available at your local hardware store. Typically these can be tinted at the paint counter to whatever shade you pick.

But, I’ll admit that I almost always use Dixie Belle Paint brand. I’ve tried many different paint brands and it’s just the brand I always return to. Honestly I use Dixie Belle for nearly all my projects. So here’s a bit more about Dixie Belle Chalk Paints:

But my favorite paint is the Dixie Belle Silk Paint. It is an all-in-one mineral paint, combining paint, primer and topcoat in one product. It goes on like a dream.

It’s not however a true chalk paint, rather a mineral style paint that is super smooth to use. It goes on like silk and has the most beautiful smooth eggshell sheen finish. And it’s so durable! So, here’s a bit more about Silk Paint:

Chalk Painting Supplies For Beginners

But now that we’ve talked about the actual paint, lets’ talk about a few of the supplies you’ll need for getting started with chalk painting furniture. For a comprehensive list with links check out this past –Furniture Painting Supplies.

To start your chalk paint journey, you will need the following supplies:

This is of course a basic list. As you begin to paint more projects, you will build up your supplies list. As mentioned above I have a more helpful list in this post which includes links to my favorite products – Furniture Painting Supplies.

How To Paint Furniture With Chalk Paint

Begin by identifying the furniture piece you want to transform. This could be an old table gathering dust in your basement, a chair you’ve sourced from a thrift shop, or even a new piece that you feel could benefit from a personalized touch.

Now that you have your supplies ready, it’s time to start painting! First, make sure that the surface you are going to paint is clean and free of any dust or debris. While chalk paint is truly low prep, it is always essential to start with a clean work surface. Read more at – How To Prep Furniture For Painting.

Old furniture can be super dirty. You can clean your furniture with a mixture of Dawn soap and water, a cleaner like Dixie Belle White Lightening, or even a spray cleaner like Krud Kutter. It doesn’t matter so much about what you use, just that you get that grime off before you paint.

Then give it your paint good stir to ensure that the pigment is evenly distributed. When painting with chalk paint, there are no special techniques or rules to follow. You can apply it just like any other water-based paint, using long and even strokes.

However, keep in mind that chalk paint dries quickly, so you’ll need to work efficiently to avoid patchy results. If you want a smoother finish, lightly sand the surface between coats. For this I would recommend a higher grit, finer sanding block like 320 or 400 grit.

Tips For Beginner Chalk Painting

Here are some handy tips for getting started with your first chalk painting projects:

  1. Clean Your Furniture: Before you start painting, make sure your furniture is clean and dry. Read more here: How To Prep Furniture For Painting.
  2. Be Patient: Let the paint dry completely before applying another coat. This will give your furniture a smoother finish. And the first coat almost never looks great. Don’t get discouraged. You’ll be amazed at the difference after your second coat. Often two coats is sufficient.
  3. Distress If Desired: If you’re going for a vintage or shabby chic look, use your sandpaper to lightly distress the paintwork after the final coat of paint has dried. This is especially cool to do around the edges and corners. Perfect for shabby, rustic and coastal looks.
  4. Protect And Seal Your Work: Don’t forget to seal your painted finish with wax or a clear varnish to protect it and make it last. This applies with most standard chalk style paints, unless they have a built-in topcoat. Read more here: Protect and Seal Painted Furniture.
  5. Experiment: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different techniques, colors, and finishes. The beauty of chalk paint is its versatility, so have fun with it! There are tons of products on the market to enhance your furniture artistry – decoupage papers, transfers, stencils, gilding wax and so much. Keep it simple or get creative. Totally up to you!

Ways To Enhance Chalk Painted Furniture

Unique Hardware

Decorating chalk painted furniture can be an excellent way to add a personal touch to your pieces. One of the simplest ways to embellish your furniture is by adding unique hardware, like vintage knobs or handles. Check out these makeovers for some unique hardware:

Stencils For Painted Furniture

Another method to decorate painted furniture is with stenciling – a great way to introduce patterns or designs onto your furniture. With a wide array of stencils available, you can choose anything from florals to geometric shapes, suiting your personal style. Learn more about stenciling in these posts and see some fun makeover featuring stencils:

Decoupage For Painted Furniture

And, don’t forget about decoupage. By using this technique, you can add an array of patterns or even images to your chalk painted furniture. And let me tell you that the decoupage papers on the market today for furniture art are just amazing! Beautiful designs in every style imaginable. Read more about decoupage in these posts:

Furniture Transfers

Also consider using furniture transfers. They are a fun way to get creative with your painted furniture. There are transfers in a style to suit everyone including modern, rustic farmhouse, floral, French country, and more.

With a variety of sizes and designs to choose from, you can easily transform your piece into a work of art. To learn more about furniture transfers and see some beautiful makeovers using them, check out these posts:

Gilding Waxes

Lastly, don’t forget about gilding wax. These highly pigmented metallic waxes add a touch of metallic shine to your pieces, making them stand out even more. Gilding wax can take a furniture piece from drab to fab. You’ll find more tips on gilding wax in these posts:

Summary: Getting Started With Chalk Painting Furniture

Congratulations, you’ve just completed your first chalk paint furniture makeover! Remember, practice makes perfect. So don’t be discouraged even if your first attempt doesn’t turn out exactly as you envisioned. Enjoy the learning process and try again.

Chalk painting truly is a wonderful way to breathe new life into old furniture, and the only limit is your imagination. It allows you to create something truly unique and personal for your home or for friends and family. I’ll just warn you though that chalk painting can be addictive!

Finally I hope that this post encourages you to give chalk painting a try. Now, grab that piece of old, unloved furniture and let your creativity run wild. Happy painting!

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