As I’ve grown my chalk painting from a hobby to a business I’ve learned some important lessons…some through old fashioned trial and error! I’ve since developed my own list of Chalk Paint Dos and Don’ts for all steps of the process. My goal is to help you achieve your best results and discover your creative genius!
- Dixie Belle White Lightning
- Krud Kutter Gloss Off
- Sandpaper – 220 grit
- Tite Bond II Wood Glue
- Fast Acting Adhesive
- Wood Filler
- Dixie Belle Synthetic Brush, Purdy Brush or Wooster Brush
- Dixie Belle Boss or Slick Stick, as needed
- Dixie Belle Chalk Mineral Paint
- Mister Bottle
- Decorative Elements such as Molds, Transfers, Stencils and Waxes
*This post contains affiliate links. You don’t pay any more from ordering from these links but I earn a small commission so I can continue to bring you free tutorials! They also allow me to show you what I use and have found to work.
My Top 5 Do’s & Dont’s
I have selected five key areas for this blog:
- Picking…your project
- Prepping…before painting
- Products…to consider
- Painting…style and options
- Playing…because fun matters!
When shopping for a piece of furniture, I used to base my decision primarily on cost. After some frustrating experiences — stripping off old veneer and paint — or finding that certain repairs were just beyond my ability, I developed some new guidelines.
Do: Look for projects you will enjoy restyling
Don’t: Let price override an honest evaluation
For me, prep includes minor repairs such as gluing (Tite Bond or Fast Acting Adhesive) and filling in gouges, nicks or holes with wood filler. To ensure paint adhesion and a smooth finish, I go over slick or rough with a 220 grit sanding pad. I clean off old dirt and wax with Dixie Belle’s White Lightening and may follow with Krud Kutter Gloss Off if my surface is still looking slick. For more detail please see my blog, The Basics of Chalk Painting.
I love color and am always excited to jump in and start painting. But when I encounter bleed through or peeling paint my excitement turns to regret. Why didn’t I use a primer? Now I use Dixie Belle’s Boss (blocks Odors, Stains and Stops Bleed Thru) or Slick Stick to prevent problems before they start. For more even more tips when painting white please see my blog How to Paint White Furniture.
Do: Take preliminary steps to ensure a successful result
Don’t: Skip repairs, cleaning or priming as needed
When I started painting, I never would have dreamed of spending more ten dollars for a brush! And for a long time my Wooster served me well. But in my quest for a smoother finish, I added Purdy Pro Series brushes to my toolbox and when I began painting on a daily basis, I switched to Dixie Belle Synthetic Brushes. In a similar fashion, I use to rely solely on hand sanding and then discovered that an orbital sander and mouse sander, were indispensable time saving tools.
Do: Invest in quality supplies that you can afford
Don’t: Overlook products to improve results or save time
Painting…style and options
I started painting with Dixie Belle chalk mineral paint because I took a class where it was sold. As a newbie, I found it easy to use – the self leveling feature made my paint look even better as it dried! And using a water spray misting bottle prolonged the paint’s open time, reducing the appearance of brush strokes.
I went on to try many other brands of paints at all price points. My conclusion — all paints labeled “chalk mineral paints” behave and perform differently. In fact, some do not even contain chalk or minerals! I went back to Dixie Belle because it best suits my style of painting — clean classic looks, as well as artistic blended finishes.
Do: Find a brand of paint that complements your style
Don’t: Assume all “chalk paints” are the same
Play…because fun matters
I started chalk painting at a low point in my life…my job of 10 years had been eliminated and I was struggling with depression. Painting became my therapy and as I painted my furniture my mood began to lift. I took risks, made mistakes, learned new things and felt my confidence return.
I try to remember those times as my hobby has come my business and I find myself reigning in creativity for the sake of broad market appeal. There are so many fun, creative options for painted furniture — moulds, transfers, stencils and colored waxes to name just a few! For some ideas, please see my blog How to Makeover Furniture Using Decor Molds or Chalk Paint Finishing Techniques.