It seems like most of my life, I have been a little late to the party. I was definitely slow to mature physically, had braces until the end of my sophomore year of high school, and am just now finishing the last year of my college degree at Washington State University whilst qualified for Medicare. I may have taken being a late bloomer to a whole new level!
So it comes as no surprise that I have been late to the chalk painting party, along with everything else. It seems like everywhere I look, people are slapping chalk paint on just about anything that will stand still. I mean, what’s not to like? You don’t have to prep the surface first, other than a quick wipe-down. No sanding, no paint remover, nothing. And when you’re done applying the chalk paint, you can easily distress the edges for a rustic look, or wax the surface for a more traditional look. However you cut it, chalk
Not that I am averse to following a good trend, but I have resisted the chalk painting party for a couple of reasons. First, I tend to decorate in a more traditional style, which doesn’t include many painted pieces. Second, I just love the look of natural wood in almost any tone. My husband does woodworking as a hobby, and through the wonderful pieces he has made over the years, my appreciation for the beauty of wood tones has grown even more.
Having said all of that, I do believe there are times when covering up wood is a great idea. Take this little chair for instance. I got it second hand when we lived in Hawaii, and it has been languishing in a guest room ever since. It had sage green paint and a gold plaid upholstery that I must have loved once upon a time, but not anymore. This chair was either ready to be donated to my favorite charity or I needed to find a way to make it cute again. I thought “maybe it isn’t too late to join the chalk paint party,” and I was on my way.
A quick trip to Home Depot to discover that they now sell chalk paint in a rattle can. Who knew? So I picked up a couple of cans in Tin White. Next, it was time to spread out the drop cloth and give the chair a couple of coats of paint. After the paint was dry, I hit it with a layer of satin poly and it was done. I used the poly because I had it on hand, but I may try the waxing method next time. The surface has a little more matte finish than normal paint would, even after applying the poly, but I still really like it.
Then it was on to reupholstering the seat. This is pretty straight forward, but you remove the screws holding in the seat. Obviously, this was done before painting:) Then using a thin screwdriver and needle nose pliers, pry the old staples out. Once you have the fabric removed, use it as a pattern for your new material, leaving an extra inch or two around all sides for trimming later. With a staple gun, work your way around the chair, pulling the fabric taut as you staple. For the corners, pull them up in a fold, easing them around the corner and staple in several places. NOTE: When stapling and trimming your fabric, keep the area where the screw holes need to go, free of staples and fabric. This will ensure that the reattachment process goes smoothly. Don’t ask me how I know this…
So, there you have it. A very simple chair makeover using chalk paint. In my case, I was able to take an outdated chair that had little value and turn it into a usable piece for the guest room. Bolstered by my success with the chair, I painted a burgundy bamboo ladder that holds a collection of throws, with the same lovely results. Next, a little green side table is waiting in the garage for its make-over.
I love chalk paint. But, now it comes in a spray can! How clever! Especially for painting chairs. I have found waxing okay for items that don’t get too much wear and tear but used it on a coffee table and the wax didn’t stand up. I need to redo my coffee table with the poly coating. Thanks Diane!
I have heard that about the waxing, too, that it doesn’t hold up well on heavy use items. Good luck!