When my husband and I bought our house years ago, we moved from a very small space to a much larger one. After signing my life (and finances) away for the next thirty years, there wasn’t a whole lot of money left in the budget for a house full of fancy new furniture. We opted instead to buy some very affordable, functional, and durable pine pieces from Great Things. They served us well for many years and because they’re solid wood, we have been able to stain or paint them to fit our changing decor.
A few years ago, I decided to paint the walls in the extra bedroom (we turned it into a home office) black. It made a stunning statement and I loved it. I got a little too ambitious when it came to the furniture though. I abandoned the project halfway and my (loving) husband often dropped subtle hints about the unpainted sides of the dresser pushed up against the wall.
A couple of weeks ago the sun came out, Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan arrived at the store, and my enthusiasm for the home office returned. I said goodbye to the black walls and hello to Benjamin Moore Louisburg Green. The partially finished furniture also presented itself as the perfect opportunity to experiment with Chalk Paint®, which doesn’t require any special preparation or priming and dries quickly ( I am not a patient person)
As you can see, the wardrobe was never painted on the inside or the bottom and what you can’t see is that the top and right side facing the wall is also unpainted. Not great if I ever wanted to rearrange the furniture.
A couple of years ago, my parents bought me some beautiful drawer pulls from Anthropologie and they served as the inspiration for my new furniture colour scheme. Since the furniture was already (partially) painted, there were a couple of left over drips on the inside of the drawers. I was determined to do a thorough job this time around so I sanded them smooth with some 180 sandpaper.
All those Pinterest photos inspired me to do a two tone colour scheme with the exterior of the wardrobe in Country Grey and the inside with Primer Red. I taped up the edges of the drawers with 3M tape for delicate and freshly painted surfaces (you’ll see why a little later). It minimized bleed through and didn’t tear when I took it off.
I also taped off the rails so that the drawers would fit back into the wardrobe without sticking.
There are a lot of brushes you can use for Chalk Paint® but Annie’s brushes hold a lot of paint so I could do a lot of area without constantly dipping back into the paint can (I am also messy).
Since I was going over a very light pine with a fairly deep colour, the first coat looked a little patchy. Don’t panic. You’ll be amazed how well the next coat will cover. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that the first coat gripped the wood very well (what wasn’t already painted was varnished) and by the time all the insides were finished, the paint was dry enough for the second coat.
TA-DA! The second coat of Primer Red covered like a charm!
I am not a patient person and this is why I chose the 3M delicate surface tape for this project. As the second coat dried I had a hearty breakfast and by the time I was done eating, the Primer Red was ready for taping off (be gentle). The fronts of the drawers got a coat of Country Grey and as they were drying it was off to paint the body of the wardrobe.
My (did I mention loving?) husband was on hand to flip the wardrobe so I could paint the top and sides. He was thrilled that the piece would be finally completely painted from all directions. After an hour of drying, I applied one more coat of Country Grey for complete coverage. Even though the lighter colour covered like a charm in one coat, there were a couple of corners I missed the first time around.
One piece down, five more to go! I still have the desk, chair, bookcase, side table and chest of drawers and am determined to do at least one piece per week.
At the paint shop, we always try products at home or around the shop before putting them on the shelf. Some of the most important tips can’t be learned from the back of the can. Here’s what I learned on a Sunday.
The first coat of Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan goes on very easily. To get a smoother finish, thin out your second coat slightly for improved flow. Also, the paint also goes very far. I used half a quart of Country Grey and a quart and a half of Primer Red. From beginning to end, the wardrobe repaint took around 9 hours including taking off the hardware, sanding any existing drips, taping (which took a long time) painting two coats and putting everything back together. TIP: Paint can be thick and I discovered (a little too late) that the additional layers on the edges of the drawers caused them not to close properly. My (loving) husband came to the rescue with a planer which took off a ¼” inch on the bottom of each drawer to compensate.
Repainting old furniture is a fast and economical way to give your home a new look on a budget. Get inspired for your next DIY project on our Pinterest Boards. Interested in Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan? Sign up for our mailing list here and be the first to know about upcoming workshops.