Sunday, August 28, 2011

Easy Peasy -- Using Chalk Paint!

The first shipment of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint inventory arrived in Iowa right on schedule Saturday. Old Grey -- that's my recently acquired 2009 Ford Ranger -- and I hauled it to storage. Unfortunately Grey does not do any of the unloading. I couldn't wait to dip into these fab colors. But wait there is such a thing in business as checking inventory. Done.

Already we have two groups interested in carrying Annie Sloan products as mini-stockists or retailers in other parts of the state! This is moving fast and what great folks I'm meeting. I'm adding many to my blog list so check them out.

Meet first project, little side table with cut outs. Remember we are on a learning curve here. (I'm also working on a small frame at same time). But I want you to get an idea of the work time, which is amazing.

First thing to know. Chalk paint is thick, dries quickly. So don't dip from can. Pour some into another container so the bulk of it does not get left open to the air. (I use old plastic throw away tubs). Use a decent but not expensive brush. Have a variety of sizes. Use a size bigger than you think you would. Mine was too small! I'll explain when I realized this later.

In 50 minutes, this is what I had. This pretty color is Paris Grey. Is it a shabby chic color, or what? We ran off to a graduation party at this point. A couple hours later, I came back and spent 45 minutes creating this, by painting a layer of Graphite paint on in small areas and rubbing it off with a cotton sheet rag.

I personally am dubbing this the Ash Treatment. It looks smokey and cloudy, like you had rubbed fireplaces ashes on white! I am not an expert yet, and there are some spots I am not content with. The legs and sides look great, but the bigger surfaces are suffering from using a small brush. The overlapping of the paint strokes is not to my taste. Today I will sand it a bit to see if that helps. Otherwise, I'm pulling out a larger brush today and "re-doing" the horizontal surfaces with another rubbed off layer of Graphite paint. Then I will follow up with a layer of soft light colored wax, which we also carry.

That's the nice thing about this paint. If you don't get the outcome you imagined, just throw on another coat or two. Did I say fast drying? You don't have to wait two days. Did I mention no prep time? No stripping, no sanding. So if you pay more for this paint per quart than other types, remember: You are saving on time, you are saving on mess, you are saving money on stripper and sandpaper and turpentine. This paint smells like chalk -- my project is in the kitchen!

Total time to date: 1 3/4 hours (not including the 2 hours drying time). Clean up? Nooooo problem. This paint not only washed out of the brush quickly with just plain water, but it came off the plastic containers too!

Love it, love it, love it. Please leave a comment and tell me what you think!


  1. It looks great! Can't wait to see it in person!

  2. Excellent review of chalk paint! I will be in touch...from SW Missouri and inNOVAtions Studio Art Workshops...Creative juices are burbling right now and Fall Workshops are forming for November and December...Hmmmm....THANKS! Kathleen