You’ve likely noticed that I’m a fan of painting. Walls, furniture, candlesticks, pianos, baskets…you name it! For furniture, chalk paint is typically my go-to because it’s just so easy to use. Unfortunately, chalk paint can get expensive after a while. So, I’ve found a more wallet-friendly solution. I make my own!
I do not use homemade chalk paint on everything, but if I’m looking for a specific color and I can’t find it from one of my favorite chalk paint brands, I mix up my own batch using a chalk paint recipe with calcium carbonate.
Supplies for making chalk paint with calcium carbonate:
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- Calcium Carbonate. This can be somewhat difficult to find. I ordered mine from Amazon.
- Latex paint in your favorite color in flat. (I used Urbane Bronze by Sherwin Williams for this project).
- Something to stir your mixture. A plastic spoon or fork works great.
- Drop cloths
- Furniture or other object you want to paint!
- Bowl to mix the paint – I used a disposable plastic bowl.
- Paint brush – I used a Purdy brush.
- Wax for top coat (Optional) – Amy Howard Clear Wax works well.
- Old, clean t-shirts
- Rags for clean up as needed during painting
Steps for making chalk paint with calcium carbonate:
- Mix 4 tbsp calcium carbonate with 2 tbsp of water. Mix well.
- Add 1 cup of flat latex paint. Add paint slowly, thoroughly stirring as you add the paint. This will allow for a smoother finish.
- Be sure to stir your paint mixture periodically during your painting project.
Steps for painting your furniture/items with calcium carbonate chalk paint:
- As with any chalk painting project, the prep work is minimal. Just ensure your piece is clean and dry prior to beginning. No priming needed!
- Paint 2-3 light coats, allowing dry time between coats. I only used two coats with this project, but with lighter paint colors, usually three coats are required. 30-45 minutes between coats is typically sufficient dry time unless it is humid where you are painting. You WILL see brush strokes and the initial wood showing through after the first coat. That is OK! It will be covered with the subsequent coat(s).
- Lightly sand with a fine grit sand block between coats, ensuring paint is dry prior to sanding. With homemade chalk paint, the texture is grainy! Lightly sanding makes for a much smoother finish, getting rid of most of the gritty appearance.
- After sanding, wipe surface with a dry cloth prior to painting other coats. I lightly sanded again after the final coat, ensuring a smoother finish. Wipe well with a lint free cloth to remove all of the dust produced from sanding.
- After all coats are complete and dry, your piece is ready for wax. This is optional, but I highly recommend protecting the surface with some form of top coat. This is the step that can be very frustrating for some. I have had the best luck applying wax with a clean t-shirt. Use a small amount and work into your piece in about a square foot area at a time. I typically rub in circles to really get it into the surface, then complete the final few swipes going with the grain of the wood. Wipe off any excess wax.
- Buff after allowing the wax to sit for several hours (or overnight!). I also use a clean t-shirt for the buffing process as well.
- Allow the piece to fully cure before heavy use.
Sofa Table Before Using Homemade Chalk Paint:
A close up picture of before:
Between coats, cover your paint container with plastic wrap and keep your brush in a baggie to prevent paint from drying.
Check out that gorgeous tobacco basket! I’ve been searching for one forever, and finally found one at Hobby Lobby. I think it looks so fun on the new-to-me table!
What do you think? If you are looking for a less expensive chalk paint, this is the way to go! I can tell you, sanding is key. But, make sure you take the time to properly wipe all of the dust away for best results.
Have you made your own chalk paint? I’d love to hear from you. Leave me a note below!
Have a great day!