Chalk Paint…Yep Another Opinion
Just have fun
Hi Y’all – well, here we go – Chalk Paint…Yep Another Opinion! Lately we are reading a bunch about chalk paints by those who choose not to use them. I want to clear the air about Chalk Paint and why we use it. For Hello I Live Here, the perfectly imperfect decorative paint helps give otherwise old, ugly furniture a beautiful velvety, matte finish. It’s not meant to hide an older piece of furniture, but to accentuate its aged beauty.
I use this delicious paint because it is very easy to work with, rarely requires heavy prep like other paints, and can be used indoors or outside on almost any surface you can dream up with amazing results. The best thing, you don’t have to be a professional to use this wonderful fun paint. To me, painting should always be a pleasure, whether for a living or as a hobby, a beautiful piece of furniture can be born with the help of Chalk paint.
My favorite chalk paint…Annie Sloan – I purchase mine at Wood Icing inside Chesterfield Mall from the very informative Rose and staff. I drool thinking about the delicious color palette inspired by 18th and 20th century décor and design. The colors are easily mixed together to dream up almost any color and your eyes will adore it, but the best thing, it’s eco-friendly has low volatile organic compounds (VOC), and has no odor. Now, I hear you asking why this is important – for me – I paint professionally. Living in St Louis MO it gets cold and or hot, and even though my shop is heated/cooled there are times the controlled temp just will not cut it, so with the savior of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and it’s low odor and VOC’s I can paint inside my home and feel perfectly comfortable doing so.
This remarkable paint at times gets a bad rap from others questioning it’s limitations, which trust me EVERY paint has limitations, and scientific or not, all paints will scratch, mark or discolor at some point in their life – it’s not science, it’s called LIFE. Should waxed pieces be placed in front of windows? Well, for me personally, I have a piece in front of a window that’s been there for 2 years – it has never melted, and has never been touched up – Hubby sits in that chair next to it every day and uses coffee mugs (with a coaster of course) and it still has minimal wear. So my advice here, if you have a waxed piece of any kind by a window – make sure the window has a UV protective tint, for us, this is a must in our home as we hate discolored rugs or hardwood flooring, and it actually keeps the house cooler in summer and warmer in the winter. Problem of sunlight for us using chalk paint with wax was SOLVED by adding window tint.
Another thing people who do not use chalk paint say … “chalk paint is expensive.” Well, anything good is worth paying for in my opinion! One quart covers roughly around 140 square feet, and you will pay $44.00 with Tax, that’s about .31 cents a square foot. When you can use 1 can on several projects and cost it out does that seem expensive to you? I have bought other brands for less or around the same price that will not cover as much Square foot, but if I like the brand it does not stop me from using the product. Trust me when I say you can put a price on beauty that’s affordable 😉 With the help of chalk paints, Hello I Live Here, is able to give our clients quality pieces at a price we can both afford, and my clients know quality and price is MY bottom line!
I have read many debates on using this wonderful paint on kitchen cabinets. Well, if the manufacture says it can be done, to me it can. I personally would not use a wax, but that’s just me – I prefer a good lacquer or professional top coat on a cabinet, I am a clean freak, and for me this just works – but if it’s your cabinets and you want to give it a try – please watch the videos provided so you are making sure you are sealing the products properly. Enough said!
Let’s talk table tops – can you uses it on high traffic pieces? According to the cans – yes you can. I would recommend again watching the video for sealing it properly, or using 3-5 coats of a strong professional top coat – the table below looks pretty happy to me ;-). Many chalk paints play well with professional top coats and I have personally used Modern Masters, General Finishes, Lacquer, Minwax and even AquaZar top coats on my favorite brand, Annie Sloan with great results. All have held up to my family’s abuse. The one thing I tell my clients, if you have small children wax may not fit your family’s needs for cleaning and it may need a wax touch up as time goes on, if this is a bother to you and lower matinee is preferred – go with a top coat. So far, my clients have been happy with this information and have not shied away from asking for chalk paints. Personally, the more information you provide the easier it is to know what can and cannot happen, not with only chalk paint, but with other paints as well.
Others talk about paint bleed from older pieces with chalk paints. Well, I have to say, this problem happens less with my chalk paints than any other brands I use. The way to get around bleeds – PREP. Yep…this is where the prep is necessary. If is a bleeding antique, Clean the piece with a professional cleaner like TSP to package directions. Once clean, seal and prime the piece. If using a lighter chalk paint color prime twice, let dry completely and start your paint process according to the company’s instruction. I do it just like this and bleed is not a problem – after the second coat and a good dry overnight, my problem is SOLVED. – Just look at that vanity shine – She was Mahogany the worst bleeding wood of all!
Really, any paint of any type will have limitations. The thing about paint of any brand, you need to learn how to work within that brands limitations to make it the best painted project it can be. Paint is truly a personal preference –in the end it’s totally up to you. I say try more than one brand and use what you like, as you all know, I blog many brands of paint sent to me weekly. Some are good others not so much, but the one thing I can say, I can manipulate them all to work for me because I look to see how I can work within the paints limitations. We as painters are here to give our opinion, but at the end of the day, I want my clients to choose what’s best for them. (That’s General Finishes in Lamp Black below – again another happy piece).
So, now that you hear the side of chalk paint from a painter who uses it daily you will feel great about trying new things, even chalk paints. I hope the opinions and techniques I have shared that are my very own, and work for me help you see chalk paints are not as scary as portrayed by others if you use the products to the manufactures instructions. After all, if we were all looking for the science in things we would never use any products on the market – am I right?
Happy Painting everyone and remember have fun with YOUR project no matter the brand you choose – because at the end of the day your project should be as low stress as you want it to be. 🙂