Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A painted frame - my first experience with chalk paint

Hey blog readers!  Sorry I’ve been away for a little while.  I’ve been painting and wood filler-ing and sanding and painting and wood filler-ing and sanding...  You get the idea!  I’ve been busy and I’ve been LOVING it!  I’m really enjoying painting and that makes me happy!
I wanted to share my first small project using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint with you today.  I had heard so much about chalk paint, I even tried to make my own.  But after finally seeing the paint in action at R. Lucas Scott Co.’s store in Holland, MI, I knew I had to try it out for myself.  By the way, if you’re ever in the area, you MUST check out R. Lucas Scott Co.’s store.  I met the owner, Randy, while I was there and he is such an inspiration.  He is super talented and his painted furniture is absolutely amazing!  That day I left more inspired that I thought was possible.  It was such a great feeling!
Ok, on to the paint.  Now, first I want you to know that I haven’t had much experience painting with latex paint (other than walls, trim, etc.), so I can’t really compare chalk paint to latex paint.  All I can say is so far I’m loving chalk paint.  It is easy to use - it’s consistency is similar to latex.  It dries SO FAST!  Like, within 15 minutes to an hour!  It is virtually odorless, which means I can paint a piece while I’m in my office and my child is in the next room.  No odor.  Windows closed.  It’s amazing!  (I’m sure Annie Sloan would recommend good ventilation, just FYI.)  Oh, and the best part?  No sanding or priming!  Yes, I did mention earlier that I was sanding, but that’s on pieces that have holes, nicks, etc. that need to be filled with wood filler and then sanded down.  On a piece that has no real issues, I just wipe it down with a damp cloth, let it dry for a minute, and then start painting!  I love that there is very little prep work with this paint!
Ready for the before and after?  This is a picture frame I found at a garage sale for $.50!  It doesn’t have glass or Plexiglas to protect the picture, but for $.50 I didn’t really care!  And the picture they had in it is priceless!  ;)

The frame was actually in pretty good shape aside from being an ugly color, in my opinion.  It had great detail, which is all I really cared about!  All I did was wipe it down with a damp cloth and then I got started painting.  I first painted it with two coats of Arles which is a gold yellow color.  (Sorry, I didn’t take a picture of this step.  I’ve gotta get better at taking more pictures!)  I wanted to do some sort of distressing treatment on it, so I painted a coat of Old White over the entire frame.  I waited for the paint to dry, maybe a half hour, and then started distressing.  Per Annie’s instructions in her book Quick and Easy Paint Transformations, I got my wax brush damp and then dipped it in a little wax and brushed it onto the frame.  I had to push the brush into the wood a little when I was waxing to help take off some of the Old White and show the yellow Arles color underneath.  Using this method of distressing, the first coat of paint shows through instead of the wood.
I love how the frame turned out!  I’m a perfectionist, so distressing is difficult for me because I want everything to be even.  But I’m learning to just let go and not work too hard at making things look perfect.  Here are some close up shots of the distressing.

Here is the final product on my daughter’s bookshelf.

And here it is with a cute little pinwheel print from The Handmade Home.  I love this print.  It’s so cute and goes perfectly in her room!  And, guess what?  The Handmade Home has a TON of cute, free printables, so be sure to check them out!

Well, that’s all from me.  Like I said, I’m working on some other painting projects, so I’ll be back with more before and afters soon.


  1. does the chalkboard paint help in distressing?

    1. Heather - It's actually chalk paint, which is different from chalk board paint. Confusing, I know! I added a couple links to my post in hopes that it will answer your questions. Hope that helps!

  2. Hi Allison. You've got a knack for DIY. Love the yellow end table, and that daughter of yours is a cutie! Found you via Thee Blog Hop.

    1. Thank you so much for stopping by and for the sweet compliments! :)

  3. I missed those frames I saw the white one at your house and loved it! Totally cute! I missed the other one though, another great job!