Chalk Paint. I’m a Believer.

ImageSo, I wasn’t sure how I felt about chalk paint. I knew that $40 per quart was doable but I wanted to try it, not commit to a quart of one single color with a hope that I’d love the product. What did I do? I went on a search of the blogs for a chalk paint recipe & I found one! I saw (on Pinterest, where else?) this recipe from Natalme, – this is the recipe I followed except I halved the ingredients because I was only trying this paint on this dreadful cherry coffee table that once graced our formal living room. Who didn’t have one of these in the 90s? Anyone? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

To clarify: this is different from Chalkboard paint – no writing on this table with chalk, ya hear? This is simply Chalk Paint, for a Chalkboard paint recipe, try Martha Stewart. Her’s is all over Pinterest!

Here’s the fun part. I decided that I was going to try this so I went to Home Depot in hopes that I’d find a paint on the “Oops” rack that would work & hopefully in some shade of blue/turquoise/green… and I found this color! A quart of it for TWO DOLLARS!

Thank you to the person who decided, last minute not to be bold with their color choice!

Anyway so I mixed the paint, Plaster of Paris & water per the instructions & my paint was created so I walked my happy ass outside to the screened-porch & began. Much to my amazement, with out sanding, priming, or any prep work at all aside from making the paint, it was covering that God-awful cherry lacquer. I actually couldn’t believe my eyes. It was so effortless!

I painted the whole table & went back inside to watch the Real Housewives go to bed. The next morning, I woke up, grabbed a metal putty knife & chipped away at some places & scratched it up a bit. It looked great this way but based on how simple it was to distress, I knew the wax step was necessary.

I applied the wax with a rag, waited about 15 minutes & then buffed it & the shiny, yet chalky finish was revealed. Seriously looks just like the “designer” chalk paint but cost less than $10 & you have infinite color options. Are your wheels spinning yet? Because, mine haven’t stopped! I’ve been looking for things to paint ever since & this poor table still has no home. Below I’ll post more before & afters…

ImageThis is the table before. I like I said, nothing major. Everyone had this table or knew someone that did. We bought it for $5 at a garage sale in like 1997. Yeah.

ImageAll those scratches? They’re gone now. I can’t believe how scratched it was, actually. That’s what we get for leaving it in the Youth Room at church for several years, I guess…

ImageIn this picture, the legs were still wet as was the spot on top where my fingers landed the night before when I was testing to see if it was dry. It was not but this is just ONE coat of paint!

ImageI took pictures of the top, really just to show how smooth & nicely this covered. I was really impressed & this was pre-distressing & pre-wax!


Here’s the distressed & waxed finish detail. This really shows the true finish aside from color. This looks way more green but that’s what I get for using my iPhone instead of my camera…

ImageThe top, post distressing & post wax.


Now, we’re outside. This is the finished product! That’s the real color, it’s GOOD, right?

ImageAnd the top/finish detail.

Overall, this turned out amazingly well for what would’ve otherwise been a discarded donated table.

For more, tweet me @JamieBertolini

I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed this project. Now, lets all go chalk paint some stuff!


About JamieBertolini

Interior Designer / Interior Stylist to the stars! Jk... but I can be!
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9 Responses to Chalk Paint. I’m a Believer.

  1. Nice, Jamie! And I thought I was a stud for making a chalkboard with chalkboard paint in the playroom. I never thought of it for furniture. Who knew??

    • This is just chalk paint though, I should’ve clarified. Making chalkboard paint is a little different process & you wouldn’t wax it. All DIY’s are awesome, Janet – you are a stud! LOL

  2. Kate says:

    Jamie, with the homemade chalk paint, what wax do you use? Many thanks

    • Hi Kate, I used Minwax Paste Finishing Wax, the natural colored one. I couldn’t find the walnut finish which is what I wanted but the natural did the job. Thanks for your question!

  3. Natalie says:

    Wonderful job Jamie! It turned out beautifully!

  4. My so very talented grandson.. you never cease to amaze ❤

  5. arzea says:

    I love how this turned out…and the color looks totally different outside! I love it!

    I also just finished a project with AS Chalk Paint for the first time, check it out if you want-

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