How To Use Chalk Paint

Posted by on Jan 9, 2013 in Blog, Featured, Techniques | 1 comment

How To Use Chalk Paint

A lot of people are curious about chalk paint, and many wonder exactly how to use chalk paint.  While this is not exactly a tutorial on how to use chalk paint we are going to talk about some of the more important things you will need to keep in mind to help you on your next painting project.

Chalk paint can literally be used on just about any surface without preparation such as sanding and stripping.  We have painted wood, metal, plastic and a few other odd things (see this post for some crazy chalk paint ideas) If a surface is particularly beat up or chipping you may, in that case, want to go ahead and do some sanding to get the surface smoother.  However, in most cases it will not be necessary.

A Clean Piece

You will want to make sure your piece is free of dust and lint before you start chalk painting.   You can use a damp cloth or cheesecloth to achieve this.  Not much is needed here, just get most of the surface clean and dry.

Tools Needed

All you will need to get started using chalk paint is the paint itself, the piece you are painting, a good paintbrush and your finish. We’ll talk more about that in a minute..  If you are going to distress the piece later you will need some sandpaper, steel wool pads or similar items to distress the finish.  For great tutorials on distressing furniture check out this site.

How To Apply

Painting with chalk paint is a breeze.  The calcium carbonate ( or plaster of paris if you make your own chalk paint) helps the paint coat the piece with a very thick and rich covering.   Just dip your brush and paint the furniture as you would any normal piece.   It really dries very fast but the longer you leave it the better the patina will settle in and enrich the finish.

If distressing I like to wait up to 12-24 hours before doing any sanding.  This waiting period gives the paint a real chance to cure and makes your job and the outcome much nicer.


After your piece has thoroughly dried you are ready to seal it.  You can use any standard sealant.  The best are Minwax furniture paste, Annie Sloan clear wax,  a dark wax (if you want to age the finish) or a polyurethane.

It’s best to save the polyurethane for pieces that need a high gloss finish or will receive lots of traffic and abuse, such as dining room tables, desks, and coffee tables.

That’s really it.  We will get into more detail in future tutorials about exactly how to use chalk paint but this is more than enough to get you started.  I hope you enjoyed it!




One Comment

  1. Thanks I’m going to do some of this I cant work anymore and I cant just sit here. I make wreaths and love to use my scroll saw so I know I will enjoy this