Chalk paint is widely used in homes because of the unique look it gives painted furniture. Chalk paint can be used to create washes, full coats, or antique furniture. You may be wondering about how to antique furniture with chalk paint or what it even means.
When you antique furniture, it simply means to distress it. This method was actually one of the methods carried out by Annie Sloan, the creator of the original chalk paint product.
In this article, we are going to look into what distressing means and how to antique furniture with chalk paint. We are also to check out mistakes you need to avoid. Let’s get started.
How to distress furniture with chalk paint
Distressing furniture simply means making the furniture look ancient or aged than it is. The furniture surface is deliberately weathered and marred to imitate the effects of use over a long period of time.
Pros can use distressing techniques to modify a new unfinished wooden piece into what looks really aged like a hundred years ago or more.
When it comes to distressing furniture, the most common do-it-yourself method is sanding the piece of furniture along the edges and any parts that have handles like the knobs. This process reflects the general wear and tear appearance a painter’s job will show after years of being in use without repainting.
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How to antique furniture with chalk paint
i. Select the piece of furniture
If it is your first time to antique furniture with chalk paint, you need to be careful on selecting the piece of furniture. You may go with a rocking chair that you don’t need to remove parts like drawers, sand, stain, or disassemble anything.
You could also go with something as small as a side table. Make sure your piece of furniture doesn’t need any repairs or fixes. You must ensure your first experience is as easy as possible.
ii. Choose your chalk paint and color
There is typically one right Chalk paint that is widely used which is a product of Annie Sloan. It is a registered brand and arguably the Cadillac of furniture paints. However, there are other kinds of chalk paint on the market.
iii. Choose the right brush
When it comes to the brush, it is as important as choosing the right paint. Cheap bristle brushes and sponge brushes are not good recommendations as they are likely to leave streaks and fall apart.
In fact, the bristles could fall out of the brush and dry permanently on the piece of furniture. It is highly recommended to spend extra money on purchasing a quality brush.
Experts at Frenchic said the best paint brush on oak furniture is an oval paint brush. This brush is made with a careful mixture of natural and synthetic fibers.
An angled detailed brush could be useful when you need to reach those tight and hidden areas. You can make use of flat brushes to cover large smooth areas.
iv. Get necessary materials ready
It is imperative to get the necessary materials ready so that you can be organized and your project can go smoothly.
- 1 quart of chalk paint
- Annie Sloan Clear Soft wax
- Annie Sloan Dark Wax
- Painter’s drop cloth
- Paint can opener
- Wooden paint stripper
- Clean rags
- Paper towel
- Paper plate
- Cup of water
- Ziplock baggies
v. Select the right workspace
It can be hard sometimes to see the right place to carry out this task especially with limiting weather conditions. Just like other paints, it is not possible to paint outdoors if it is too cold or too hot.
So, the ideal workspace is really to be inside the house under a controlled temperature. Make sure to take extra measures to protect the flooring and prevent paint splatters on the floor.
vi. Clean the furniture
Stripping old paint or old finish on your furniture is not necessary, but you need to make sure it is clean and dry. Simply mix cleaning soap and water and apply all over the surface, then dry with a clean rag. Avoid using furniture wax to clean. The wax component of most furniture finishes does not appropriately mix well with chalk paint.
You may want to place a cloth or old sheet under your furniture in case of drips. If chalk paint gets down on the carpet or floor, you can remove it easily with dish soap and water.
vii. Get prepared
There is really no need for sanding or priming, but there are still some necessary preparations before kickstarting. Ensure to remove any handles from drawers and clean dull areas with a damp cloth to get rid of grime, grease, and dirt.
This will enhance a smooth finish. You can wipe down your furniture with sugar soap to eliminate stubborn marks or greasy surfaces. Also, make sure to lay down a dust sheet.
viii. Procedures involved
- Apply the paint
Chalk paint is one of the easy-to-apply paints on furniture because of its thickness. After opening the can, stir thoroughly to make sure the consistency is even. Then, put your brush in and apply the paint directly to the furniture surface.
Move gently from one area to the other covering all directions over the piece. If you want to be a little creative, you could create a color wash – a lighter paint effect that softly colors the furniture. To achieve this, pour some paint into a clean tray and add some drops of water. Mix gently and then apply to the furniture.
- Allow the paint to dry
Now that you are done with the first coat, give it some time to dry. The drying time varies between an hour and 3 hours based on the room temperature. Don’t worry if it looks patchy as it dries, the second coat will take care of that.
Make sure to inspect as it dries in case of any paint drips, they can be tough to remove later, so ensure to check that the paint is evenly spread.
- Apply the second coat
Once you confirm the first coat is dry to touch, go ahead and apply the second touch in the same manner of covering all surfaces. The second coat will cover all streaks and fill in thin spots, making it a smooth, all-over finish. Do not apply the paint too thickly, build it up if necessary.
After it is completely dry, take some sandpaper to the edges, handles, and corners to sand off some of the paint to expose the natural wood.
- Finish up the look with chalk paint wax
Finally, you will need to seal the painted furniture with chalk paint wax. Although this step is optional, it can make your paint durable, gain creative paint effects, and make it look professional. To do this, apply it generously with a bristle brush.
After applying wax to a large surface, wipe off any excess with a clean rag and buff in a circular motion into the furniture. Also, gently massage the wax into the tiny nooks and crannies of the piece of furniture. The surface may become sticky and tacky if excess wax is not gotten rid of.
It is important to know that wax takes up to 2 weeks before it reaches its heightened hardness, so be strategic about which furniture to use it on. An alternative to chalk paint wax is furniture lacquer.
ix. Mistakes to avoid
- Avoid overloading your brush
According to Annie Sloan, it is important to not overload your brush as she says it’s an important rule with all painting. It is quite easy to add paint to the brush but much harder to take it away.
When the paint on the brush is too much, it can lead to smudging, oozing, and general untidiness. To avoid overloading, wipe your brush on a roller tray every time you dip your brush to remove excess product.
- Start painting from the top side
This is especially necessary when you are working on a chair, turn it upside down and start with the underneath. This is to ensure you cover all areas and it seems like a fun activity.
- Don’t stall time before removing tape or stencils
Allow the paint to dry slightly before removing a stencil instead of waiting till it is fully dry. This is the same for the painter’s tape, the tape could cause cracks when it’s being removed from dry paint. So, it is advisable to remove them when it’s still a little wet.
Conclusion: How To Antique Furniture With Chalk Paint
To antique furniture with chalk paint is to give your furniture an ancient or vintage look. Chalk paint offers a multipurpose function to antique your furniture you may not find with other paint products.
We hope that this article has been able to guide you through how you can apply chalk paint to any piece of furniture and achieve the desired look. To have a seamless experience as a beginner, be sure to get ready all needed materials before starting. It is also important to allow each coat dry for 24 hours in between, although it may get dry before then.