3 things you need to know about chalk paint

The reasons why this versatile paint is an upcycler’s dream

chalk painting colours pack

(Image credit: TBC)

1. No priming or sanding required

Ever picked up a piece of old wooden furniture to upcycle, but been put off by the laborious task of sanding it down first? The joy of most chalk paint is that you don't need to prepare the wood. Annie Sloan, who coined the phrase "Chalk Paint", has made your life one step easier with her Mini Project Pack (above). It contains everything you need for a small project, such as a chair or bedside table, and includes two 100ml pots of Chalk Paint in colours of your choice (there's a range of 30 shades); one 125ml tin of Clear Soft Wax; one 125ml tin of Dark Soft Wax; and a small pure bristle brush. Annie Sloan says, "It is easy to brighten up an old bedside table, or make your favourite chair feel more ‘you'. Just a little bit of paint and a quick lick of wax, as a finish, goes a long way. Simply pop open the pack, roll up your sleeves and get creative!" You only need to apply one coat of paint and then you put on the Soft Wax – choose from Clear or Dark, depending on the look you require – with a cotton cloth or a brush to provide a protective seal. The pack includes tips for creating your own masterpiece and there are also some really useful videos on the Annie Sloan website.

duchess paint

(Image credit: TBC)

2. Quick and easy to use and environmentally friendly

New company Everlong Paint sells chalk paints that are safe for toys, don't contain harsh chemicals and are kind to the environment. For those of you who want a speedy product, it also doesn't need a wax finish. Sarah Ashurst launched Everlong Paint at the beginning of 2015, and what started as a hobby renovating her family's furniture into shabby chic pieces has flourished into a thriving business. She says, "I've always loved using chalk paint and creating my own masterpieces, but found the waxing stage such a chore. I set out to create my own chalk paint that required no wax finish and Everlong was born." The paint acts as a self-primer and adheres to almost any surface, indoors and out, so there's no need for sanding. It is also non-toxic and virtually odour free due to its low VOC content (volatile organic compounds), which makes it ideal for allergy sufferers and families with young children. There's a wide range of colours to choose from, including Duchess (above).

3 rainbow shabby chic chalk paint

(Image credit: TBC)

3. Create a number of different paint techniques

Want to create a distressed look with chalk paint? The Shabby Chic range by Rainbow at easichalk is just the thing. This furniture paint has been specifically designed to be used on bare or painted wood or any suitably primed rigid surface such as plaster, bricks, metal, glass and plastic. Simply apply two coats, using a brush or roller, in contrasting colours and allow to dry. Then lightly abrade with moistened sand paper or a stainless-steel scouring pad - make sure you go with the grain of the wood. For best results, ensure the surface is clean and free from wax or oil. If wax has been used, clean the surface thoroughly with white spirit. The company recommends that bare wood should be sanded before painting.

For more inspirational ideas on how to upcycle furniture, take a look at these 5 gorgeous projects.