DIY Chalk Paint Recipe

Chalk paint is so popular right now for refinishing furniture.  It is very versatile, it can be thinned out to act more like a stain or used full strength to cover old finishes.  The paint itself has a beautiful finish that especially lends itself to the shabby chic look.  For those of us constantly on the search for the best deal, the price of Chalk Paint (~$37 per quart) can easily deter someone from trying it.  In the process of redecorating our master bedroom I decided I really wanted to refinish some beautiful vintage pieces with chalk paint but I really didn’t want to spend $37/qt.  I researched further and found some recipes for making my own… hallelujah!!!  I played around with a few different recipes but the one I like best is from (iheartnaptime’s blog).  It is as follows

2 c. paint (latex paint of your choice, I used Behr Premium Plus Ultra in Sheep’s Wool),

5 tablespoons Plaster of Paris (powder form)

2 tablespoons Water

The process for mixing the ingredients is to mix the water and plaster of paris first making sure it is smooth with no lumps then adding to the paint and mixing well.

Tips for using chalk paint:

~ The first coat will look a little funky with lots of brush strokes, no worries, the beauty is really in the finish!

~ Make sure to sand with a fine grit sanding sponge after your last coat, this will smooth out the finish.

~ I like to finish mine with Min Wax Finishing Paste.  Rub a thin coat over the whole piece, let sit for 15 minutes and then wipe off.  Will leave a protective coating that really brings out the patina of the paint.

Hope you try it!


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  1. Mary Sinclair says

    I’ve saved this site as a favorite. I just went to a workshop on chalk painting at Mama’s Happy. Glad to know
    there is a savings on what could be an expensive hobby. Just getting started, so a big THANK YOU.

  2. vera says

    Can you finish this with poly instead of wax? I am thinking of doing my unfinished kitchen cabnets in this technique.

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