How to Chalk Paint with Confidence

Learn the best Chalk painting ideas from The Design Twins

We are sharing our best chalk painting tips so you can learn how to chalk paint everything from dressers to pianos like a true professional. Learn how to revamp ordinary pieces of furniture in the span of a day!


This is one of my favorite chalk paint makeovers. It is Jodie’s bedroom dresser (that was a natural wood before).  She used American Paint Company’s “Home Plate” (gray-toned white). The new hue brightened the piece and her room but maintained the character by allowing some of the wood to “peek” through. The result is an updated, more elegant, yet still cottage look. It’s a great example of what chalk pain can do. 

Chalk Paint: Do’s, Don’ts & Everything In Between

Let’s begin by setting your mind at ease. There are no real rules painting with chalk paint because there is no one look to achieve. We’ll call them “guidelines.” You can’t ruin a piece because you can always add another coat or get out your sander. Feeling better already? Good. Remember to keep that relaxed feeling as we explore the in’s and out’s. Our goal is to give you plenty of confidence to begin. We want to supply you with everything you need to start but not too much to get you so confused you don’t know what to do.

That being said, not all chalk painting projects are created equal. We highly recommend “getting your feet wet” by choosing your first projects well. There are so many fun chalk paint furniture ideas to choose from.

    1. Don’t start with the piano. I probably didn’t need to say that, but just in case.
    2. Choose a small piece.
    3. Play around with practice items that you don’t care about if they don’t turn out the best.
    4. These might include a small frame, a small piece of home decor.
    5. Once you’re familiar with how it applies and how fast it dries etc., you’re ready to move on to furniture.
    6. Your first piece of furniture should be something you are not currently happy with, or in other words, it can only be improved.
    7. Don’t choose something with a lot of detail or challenging aspects.
    8. Stick with one color to begin.
    9. Don’t choose an antique as your first piece (more on this later).
    10. And now time to have some fun.

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Tools Needed for Chalk Paint

Tools Needed:

Chalk paint (just making sure you’re awake)

Finishing wax, clear, light, or dark (optional but highly recommended)

Paint brushes, one for painting and one for applying wax

Drop cloth

Moist cloth for dusting/accidental drips

Screwdriver or paint can opener

Sandpaper, several grits, 240-400 for in-between coats and general smoothing, have some more coarse if you are planning on heavy distressing

Cheese cloth optional (for dusting and buffing wax)

Music (to keep you singing)

Chalk Painting Tutorial: All you need to know to easily repurpose furniture with chalk paint


How to repurpose furniture with chalk paint

The Basics: What is Chalk Paint Anyway?

  • It is an incredible product specifically designed for furniture, and it can be used on walls and in painting leather, vinyl, exterior surfaces such as doors and shutters and more.
  • It has a chalky finish and is often used to achieve a shabby chic or aged look because it is easily distressed.

Reasons Why We Like Chalk Paint? (vs. regular oil-based)

  • You can paint indoors because there are no harsh odors.
  • No painting in cold garages or sweltering heat in the summer.
  • You don’t have to get your hubby to agree to move furniture (again) and make him crabby. This means you can ask him other tasks later.
  • You can paint on the spot. Just pull away from the wall, lay drop clothes, and you’re ready to paint.
  • For most pieces there is no prep work. Just dust off and begin to paint (exceptions are below).
  • Dries super fast. You can paint your 2-3 coats in a day (if you’re not too tired).

All of the above equals LESS TIME AND LESS WORK. I’m in!

Before you begin:

  1. Gather your tools. See the list above.
  2.  Clear your space, whether you choose the garage or decide to paint right in the room where your furniture sits (always my preference)
  3. Lay a generous drop cloth to protect your flooring and create space so you have room to work.
  4. Wear clothes you don’t care about, unless your sister is taking photos of you for the blog. No matter how careful you are, expect a small amount of splatter.

Prep Your Chalk Paint Furniture

What? I thought you said no prep! Easy, Girl. No worries, and as promised, very little to no prep is needed.

  1. Use a moist cloth and remove all dust and dirt. Dry.
  2. Make sure there is no oil from treatment products like furniture oil.
  3. If your piece has loose paint you should do a little sanding. Otherwise, there is no need to remove old paint. In fact, if you will be distressing later these other layers of paint will add fun character to your piece.
  4. VERY IMPORTANT: If your piece is over 40 years old you will need to prime. If you don’t you can expect bleed through…and no number of coats will stop it. I learned the hard way with my piano! Shhh, no one is supposed to know this.

DIY repurpose furniture with chalk paint

My 1940 Winter Piano is my favorite chalk painting makeover to date. Now I know to prime a piece over 40 years old because I had some bleed through, but luckily only in lower less seen areas. All in all, I love it!

Ready, Set, Paint!

    1. Shake your chalk paint WELL. Because of the thicker consistency you will need to stir every 15 minutes or so. Some folks like to paint from a small dish or paper plate while the bulk of their paint remains sealed. I like to put my paint in a larger Tupperware container to allow for easier stirring and resealing.
    2. Use back and forth quick strokes. Paint in all directions. Work in a small space and move quickly. Why so quick? It dries that fast! Don’t go over an area you just painted. You will want to. Stop yourself! As Jodie says, you’ve got one chance per coat due to the quick-dry factor. Don’t worry if you see paint strokes or if you “see through” on your first coat.  The second coat will take care of this, promise. Be extra careful of drips. If they sneak by you, they dry so fast that you’ll have to sand them away.
    3. Catch the drips but don’t be tempted to “touch up” what you’ve painted, wait until the next coat. Am I repeating myself? OK, I know I am. It is the hardest thing for me every time, maybe you’ll be better than I am.
    4. Do not apply heavy coats! Also totally learned this the hard way, so you don’t have to.
    5. Let your first coat dry minimally two hours. Take a nice lunch break, rest your arm, and go back for coat #2.
    6. Follow the same for your second coat. Watch for drips and make sure your coverage is good.
    7. For most of my chalk painting projects two coats have been enough.
    8. The piano took three because it was a) so dark and b) I didn’t know about the potential for bleed through and didn’t prime it.

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Chalk Paint Ideas: Prevent Bleed Through

If you’re working with new, untreated wood, you’ll need to apply clear shellac to wood knots and open grains. This will block tannins that can bleed through the paint. This is unless you want to see them, which is also a choice.

If you see a yellow or pink stain coming through the paint on older furniture (typically from the 1930s and 1940s) apply clear shellac. One or two coats of shellac applied with a cloth pad will stop this happening. It dries in minutes, and then you can get on with your painting. This is what happened with my piano and I was like what?

Which Chalk Paint Do We Recommend?

I choose mine based on availability and COLOR. We usually use Amy Howard but have also used CeCe Caldwell, Annie Sloan, and The American Paint Company. We haven’t seen too much difference between the brands. Each project feels like a new adventure because each piece presents a different set of perimeters. They all run about $36.00 per quart. Pricey we know, but a little goes a long way, and when you consider you are repurposing old pieces instead of buying new furniture it’s a STEAL!

Chalk Paint Furniture

Chalk Paint Furniture: Distressing

There are two main types of distressing, wet and dry. Wet is done with a moistened lint-free cloth, and dry is done with sandpaper.

Best Chalk Paint: Which Should You Choose?

Depending on the brand of paint you use and the surface you paint you may or may not have a choice. We usually try wet distressing first. If your project isn’t suited for wet distressing, you’ll realize it almost immediately. Here are the differences. Wet takes less elbow grease, so if you suffer from carpel tunnel like I do you might want to try wet distressing. Also, wet distressing is less mess.

Note: Sanding can take you down to the raw wood if you aren’t careful. Use a fine grain to avoid this. You can’t get the beautiful old wood finish back if that happens. Wet also gives you a smoother finish. You can easily create any level of distressing simply by controlling the amount of pressure. To do the wet distressing technique get your lint-free cloth, put it around your finger in a tight hold, dip into water and rub.

If you accidentally remove more paint than you like you can touch up with paint again. This is easily done and not nearly as tricky as with other painting materials. Honestly.

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Smoothing Step

How to Paint with Chalk Paint: Smoothing Step

After you are done painting and distressing, take a small piece of 600-grit sandpaper and pass over your piece lightly, as if you were dusting. (No back and forth) This is for smoothing only and makes a big difference in the look of your final product.

Chalk Paint tutorial wax

Chalk Paint Final Step: Wax

Waxing is not essential, but we recommend it.

Without wax, your piece will be:

  • slightly more rustic, with an unfinished look
  • unprotected
  • chalkier look
  • chalky feel

I definitely think there are pieces that this is fun and desirable.

With wax your piece will be:

  • protected from wear and tear
  • slightly more finished look
  • smoother, chalk-free feel
  • and it can be used to add a fun finish (more below)

Any surface that will be used like tabletops or cupboards, you’ll definitely want to seal with wax. You may even want to reapply a coat of wax every 6-12 months depending on use.

Which Wax Should I Choose?

There are also all kinds of special waxes you can find in the marketplace:

  • Clear
  • Tinted light antique
  • Tinted dark antique
  • Pearl
  • Luster
  • White
  • with more being invented every day.

These will add a variety of different looks and are fun to play around with. You might choose light or dark antique if you want to add some aging to your piece. You can control the amount of color by wiping it off. I suggest you look at inspiration pieces to help you get a feel for the variety of looks you can achieve and to help you see how accent colors are added to corners and details to get an aged, enhanced look.

The tinted waxes are more for when you are ready for more advanced fun. If you are a beginner, I suggest starting with clear. But don’t rule out future experimenting. If you are using a tinted wax I highly recommend playing around with the color on a small piece before adding it to your painted furniture.

Wax Application

  • Apply with a regular brush.
  • If your piece has a lot of detail a round brush can be very useful. Otherwise, there’s really no need to invest in expensive brushes.
  • Brush it on.
  • Wipe it with a lint-free cloth.
  • Buff it. Buffing is my least favorite part because it requires a lot of elbow grease. How much you buff will depend on your commitment level and how much you want it to shine.
  • Let it dry (cure) overnight before you add decor (impatient me always needs reminding of this!)

Note: You will want a dedicated brush to always use for wax. To save cleaning time, put your waxing brush in a Ziploc bag and store in the freezer.

For more painting tips and inspiration, be sure to check out my blog post on how to paint your kitchen cabinets like a pro!

Final chalk painting reveal

Get Ready to Take on The World

Why use Chalk Paint? When you have a vision for a unique distressed, weathered, or multi-layered look, or when you just want an easy option with little to no prep time.

As with all endeavors there is a small learning curve. After you accomplish just one piece you will jump up to new heights in the curve that will make you want to JUMP FOR JOY. Who cares that there’s more to learn? You’ve transformed a piece of furniture. Hooray for you! Trust me, you think I’m exaggerating, but just you wait, you are going to think I understated this when you’re done.

You are going to feel so empowered you’ll most likely start to look around your house for your next “challenge.” So, I should warn you right now: Chalk Paint projects are addictive. There, I said it. But it’s great. You will feel empowered, productive, economical, and creative all in one fell swoop. Look out world, here we come. Here’s to being UNSTOPPABLE.

Chalk Painting tutorial and all you need to know

For even more chalk paint inspiration, check out these non-furniture chalking painting projects!

Want more chalk paint ideas? Head to Pinterest. Speaking of Pinterest, Jodie and I would love you to pin any of the pictures and pins you find throughout our blog. This is not only a huge complement to our work but also is like a gift to us. It helps spread the word that our blog is here.

With Love and Gratitude,

jodie & juliechalk painting tips tools

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Article Name
How to Chalk Paint with Confidence
Chalk paint with all the confidence of the pros with these easy guidelines. Do's and Don'ts to make your next project easy and successful! Visit us.
Publisher Name
The Design Twins
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  1. Donnamarie Larkin says:

    Thank you for this post~~ I always wondered if I should use wax or not? I have not done a chalk painted piece yet but I want to. Love reading on it first hand. Thanks for tips ~~ Never knew about wet distressing either till this blog 🙂 Good to know not to apply heavy coats when painting. Thanks again for “March Madness”

    • Shari Hazlett says:

      Hi Julie and Jodie,
      Happy Thursday! So many great tips. I have mostly used Annie Sloan’s chalk paint, but will be trying a few of your suggestions. I go through stages of painting almost everything that is not nailed down! (My SIL says I may need to go to a 12 step program for gray 🙂 it’s such an inexpensive way to deliver great impact. Warmly. Shari ????????March madness

  2. Andrea says:

    The piano project inspired me to take a chest I was given and chalk paint it. I always hated it but figured it couldn’t get any worse. I still didn’t love it but someone else did and I sold it. Thank you so much for the tutorial! March madness!

  3. Melanie says:

    March Madness. Need to so this with an old chest. Thank you for these great tips!

  4. Pam says:

    I have an old bedroom set (long dresser, upright dresser and 2 end tables) that I’ve been meaning to chalk paint. I even bought the paint and wax 2 yrs ago! Yes, yes i’m a terrible procrastinator. When it came right down to it, I wondered if i’d have the ambition to do all 4 pieces and didn’t want to do 1 piece then decide I didn’t like the look so there they sit.

    This post has given me the incentive to do it! At least the 2 end tables to start.

    Thanks for the March Madness Inspiration and lesson.

  5. Glory Galbraith says:

    Oh my goodness ladies, you have out done yourselves! I now have the courage and perfect tutorial to tackle a bench I’ve been meaning to chalk paint. Thanks for all the info and inspiration. March Madness! ????????????????????????

  6. Phyllis says:

    Julie and Jodie …. I have needed this post! Have been wanting to try chalk paint but just wasn’t sure where to even start! (Well, I did start by buying the chalk paint, but everything stopped there!) I have a couple of candlestick holders which are small and I’ll try them first. Then I have an older piece of furniture (glad to know I should prime it first) and will do that after I get my feet wet. Thanks so much! Bring on the March Madness!

  7. Janneth Tauriello says:

    OMG ???? I totally love this post! So much information and very useful. I have already done a couple of small projects and yes is addictive ! My next one is a Iittle bigger I want to tackle an old dresser and matching headboard from my guess room, wish me luck! March Madness

  8. Marilyn says:

    Great post about chalk painting. I have been looking at my piano to update but a friend had warned me about color bleeding thru. Thanks to your advice I will be sure to sand and prime before tackling this fun project. So excited about March Madness!

  9. Christina says:

    Excellent breakdown ladies!! I love to chalkpaint for all of the reasons you’ve outlined in this post. It truly does give new life to pieces!!! Enjoying your March Madness posts!

  10. Cathy says:

    I have never used chalk paint before. I think I’m going to try a small piece and see how it comes out. The piano and dresser came out beautiful and the process seems a lot easier then regular paint.Thanks for the tutorial.
    March Madness ????

  11. Stacey says:

    I love how y’all are not afraid to tackle anything! For the longest time, I was very afraid to paint any furniture. Just recently I painted and distressed a nightstand. I am so glad I started with a small piece. I did not know you could distress a piece when it is wet, but that would have been easier than the dry method. I can also attest that it is addicting. I am working on more projects this weekend! The piano you did is gorgeous!! Yay for the weekend and March Madness!!

  12. This is great advice and a go “Go to” for future projects. I love how Julies piano turned out. March madness 🙂

  13. Debbie Rosalis says:

    I love this post! You’re right that chalk painting is addictive !! I love that you really can’t make a mistake, just paint another coat. ???? March Madness !!

  14. Janice says:

    Great steps on how to chalk paint. March Madness

  15. Stephanie Hall says:

    This is so timely! I just brought home an old chest of drawers that I am planning on painting with chalk paint. I’ve used Annie Sloan chalk paint in the past, but this time I’m giving the Rustoleum chalk paint a try. March madness.

  16. Pat Howe says:

    Wow this was awesome. I can’t wait to try this. Thanks for sharing. Happy March Madness.

  17. Tracy says:

    I have been wanting to try this. Happy march maddness.

  18. Linda Greer says:

    Chalk painting is very addicting!! My husband knows not to stand still for too long in our home.
    Thank you for this informative post and March Madness!

  19. Irene says:

    You’ve inspired me, I pulling out an small roll top desk to try this. March Madness day 10

  20. Shelly fonda says:

    I love this post! I’ve done several chalk paint projects but never knew why it bled through. Also, I have a piano like yours that I’m scared to paint but yours looks so great! Thanks for all the tips!!! March madness day 10!????

  21. Jill Stephenson says:

    Julie and Jodie,

    Thank you for interesting and informative blog on chalk painting with confidence! Have a question to put to you and your followers . What are your thoughts on the chalk paint specific brushes yay or nay??! I have tried both and was wondering what you all thought!

    Happy March Madness!



  22. ANDREA says:

    Oh I think I want to do this on my daughters dressers! She has my childhood, french provencial style dressers. She has been asking for new , white dressers but we can’t financially. This looks like a makeover I could do & afford. Thanks for inspiring yet again !!.

  23. Lauren says:

    Love this! Recently discovered chalk paint and am excited to get to work.???? March madness

  24. Sarah Maney says:

    These are great tips! I think I get too impatient, so when I’ve chalk painted in the past, my pieces didn’t turn out as great as they could have. I can’t wait to choose a new project and take my time! (March Madness)

  25. Jacqueline says:

    Thank you for the information! I’ve only chalk painted a few times and these tips were very helpful. I have dresser that I want to paint and I’m going to have to shellac it. Thanks for the heads up! March madness !

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Jacqueline, Welcome to our blog! We are thrilled you made it here. We have lots more inspiration, decor, and DIY projects to share with you so we hope you will join us regularly for all the fun! With gratitude, your friends, Julie & Jodie

  26. Stacy says:

    This post was so helpful. I have always wanted to chalk board paint something and the detail in your post was great. I am sure I will be referring back to it l!

    Thank for taking her time to write it.

    March madness ????

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Stacy, Thank you for the super sweet reply. I’m so very glad you found this helpful. It was important to me that this post be as complete as possible without overwhelming people. It is a fine line between the two haha! We love having you on our blog. We truly hope you will make visiting our blog a daily habit…like sitting down for coffee with the twins wink wink. With love and gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  27. Janelle says:

    Love your piano and love that you said not to start with one! I did my first chalk paint project a few months ago (tea cart) and wish I had your tips then! I am now motivated to try again…just not on my grandmother’s piano! Thanks for the great tips!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Janelle, Welcome to our blog, Sweet Friend! So glad you found this post helpful. Chalk painting is fun and empowering, when you know what you’re doing! haha! I was surprised at how little recently published information there is on the topic. I thought there would be a lot more. Anyway, we want to thank you for coming to our blog and of course even more, for leaving a kind reply. We sincerely hope you will continue to visit us and enjoy every time you do. With love & gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  28. Painting furniture is one of my favorite things to do! Thanks for all of your tips, sweet friends. I’m always learning something new from your blog! xoxo
    (March Madness)

  29. Brenda Galiher @growingingracedaily says:

    This article has been so helpful, I have chalk painted before, and see where I could have gotten better results if I would follow some of your ideas. You girls just amaze me with your energy. March Madness

  30. Irene says:

    Love the look, can’t wait to try it. March Madness day 11.

  31. Jas says:

    This blog was just what I needed! I just thought about how much I want to try chalk painting. Thank you 🙂

  32. Patti Aparicio says:

    I’m so grateful for this post! You gave so much insight and information. I didn’t realize how important the wax was and that there were different types and finishes. Looking forward to painting my old trunk with a bit more confidence now!
    Thank you, Patti
    P.S. March Maddness ☘️

  33. MB Bruder says:

    Thank you!!!! I needed this post- will be using chalk paint for the first time on a desk- March Madness!!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Thank you friend! We are so glad you found our chalk painting post helpful! That means a lot. We hope you will continue to visit our blog and find lots to inspire, motivate, and some just plain FUN! With love & gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  34. Rebecca says:

    Loved this post! We are chalk painting the base of our new farm table. Will use some of these tips to complete the project. Thank you for all the wisdom!!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Rebecca, How perfect is that. Sounds like this came in good time for you! Jodie and I are so very grateful for your sweet support! We hope you will continue to visit us here on the blog and find lots to inspire and motivate you. With many blessings, Julie & Jodie

  35. Caroline says:

    This post was so perfectly timed for me! I am painting a small side table as my very first furniture painting project. I really appreciate how you walked us through the steps. I feel like I have a better understanding of what I’m about to tackle! And thanks for March Madness!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Caroline, It is our pleasure! It makes us so happy to know that what we write has been helpful. We hope you will continue to visit us and find all kinds of things to inspire and motivate you. We hope you will make our blog part of your daily ritual and that we can grow in friendship along the way. With gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  36. Theresa Gilmore says:

    March Madness is about to be in full swing! And…..I must be a little mad to try this, but I have an old stool that will be my first chalk paint project! Wish me luck! ????

  37. Judy O'Nan says:

    I love junking and giving new life to wood with chalk paint. I love Annie Sloan. I have tried several brands, even making my own, but I’ve not the Amy Howard. I am going to research the wax you used. I also love to topcoat with watery chalk paint to make it look like the grain in the wood is showing. Try it! March madness.

  38. Piper says:

    I love chalk painting but haven’t done it in a while. You have inspired me to grab my paint and brush and start painting again. Love the post! March Madness!

  39. Jessica says:

    Oh my goodness I wish this post existed a few weeks ago! My husband and I bought an old table a few weeks ago and used chalk paint on the base. It was so hard to find info on it! We used chalk paint because of the lack of prep work. It has super intricate sides and was so hard to paint! We didn’t do any distressing (my husband isn’t crazy about it) but I love how it turned out!

  40. Jan English says:

    Jodi and Julie, you girls have this down! Your projects look perfect! It’s SO addicting once you get the feel for it….all my furniture may eventually get a makeover! Thanks for all your helpful info????????????????????????
    Blessings, Jan❤️ HomeGirls Design

  41. Mary Ann says:

    Thank you girls!! This was so informative…I am sharing with a friend who is refinishing an old desk. Thank you for all your informative blogs. I am new blogger on IG and you both have provided a wealth of information. Blessings & Thank you!! PS: March Madness!! ☺️

  42. Maryellen Kawalec says:

    I am so glad I read this! I have chalk painted several pieces and an doing another piece tomorrow. It is an antique and I did not realize you needed to prime these pieces. Thank you! March Madness!

  43. Shelly fonda says:

    Yay for March Madness!!! I’m caught up on your blog… Finally!!! Thanks for all your informative and inspirational posts! Love ya’ll!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Wow Shelly, Caught up?? You mean you’ve read everything?? Haha. That would be amazing. I want to know your favorite post 🙂 Anyway, that means I need to get writing! I have 2 inspiration posts I’m working on currently. My brain works faster than my fingers can type…eek! So glad you are enjoying. We certainly are enjoying creating it for you. We hope you will continue to be inspired. With love & gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  44. Stacey says:

    Okay I am ready to try out chalk paint now! All thanks to your blog (and the fact Joanna Gaines just came out with a chalk paint line). Let’s do this – March Madness!

  45. Mary says:

    Great job on the chalk painting. I have done several pieces. Your advice is good. Waxing is important. Mary

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Mary, Oh good. I always hope all levels will think it’s good advice. When I am writing a piece I imagine both novices and experts reading it. I wanted to make it as complete as possible without overwhelming. haha. Thank you so much for your sweet reply. We hope you will continue to join us here on our blog and make it a regular morning coffee date with us 🙂 With love & gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  46. Liz says:

    Hi Ladies. Jodie ask me a few hours ago if I’m going to chalk paint After some thought. I think I will. Grandson and wife are moving into their first home on .Monday . I’m going to look for something small like a little table or night stand. I’ll surprise them with it. My project next week. Thanks for encouraging me today Jodie.
    Was fun watching Julie paint the piano. Looks so elegant. Love it.
    Sending love to y’all. Liz

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      How wonderful Liz! We love that you are inspired to try. You are so generous. Always thinking of others. Hope you have fun with it and of course never hesitate to ask us questions if they pop up! With love, Julie & Jodie

  47. Lucy says:

    Great info! I’m feeling rather inspired! I just might be brave enough to paint my kitchen cabinets!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Hi Lucy,
      If I were going to paint my kitchen cabinets I might be torn between chalk paint and regular paint. I might be tempted to paint with regular paint. You are going to have to paint at least 3 coats for cabinets due to the wear. And after you spend all the time waxing and buffing you might as well have done pre-work. I don’t know…as I said, think hard about which to choose. Kitchen cabinets are a big, big job…I know people who have chosen chalk paint and I think they did 4-5 coats, which I think might be overkill, but I would just consider regular paint. Good Luck, Julie & Jodie

  48. Jackey Johnson says:

    March Madness!

  49. Gayla Frasier says:

    Great tips! I’m a fan of waxing, don’t love the chalky feel. Thanks!
    March Madness!

  50. Kristine says:

    I watched your story when you started painting the piano, and I’ll admit at first I thought Oh no….don’t paint it. But it turned out amazing! Thanks for sharing your tips with chalk paint. March Madness ????

  51. Picturessay1kwords says:

    Great blog! Thanks for the instructions and tips – inspired and more confident now to give it a try. Love your honesty with your advice. March madness.

  52. Tammy Loveless says:

    Thanks for all the great ……I did so you don’t have to… Lol. Getting me excited to try on a large piece. march Madness

  53. Tanya says:

    I did not know you could distress with a wet cloth! So many great tips! (I have the hardest time not going back over what I’ve already painted! Lol) Thank you for all the tips! I’m really enjoying March Madness! 😉

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Tanya, Honestly, the struggle is real. Jodie is very good at this. When she is not with me I always want to try to go over stuff and I can hear her voice in my head!! So glad you are enjoying the blog. And so glad we got connected through it. With love, Julie & Jodie

  54. Alexandra says:

    I bought a gorgeous antique door to put as my pantry door and I’ve been thinking about chalk painting it. Thanks for the priming tip! I would’ve never known! March Madness

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      I thought there would be so much more information out their on chalk painting. I was shocked to find as little as I did. I was also shocked to find most of it dated from years ago! Weird. Anyway, I knew I had to write another chalk painting article for that primer info alone. If you are painting an antique piece it is kind of a deal breaker! Yikes. Good luck with your project. We hope you will continue to enjoy our blog and come and say hello regularly. With gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  55. Nadia Kirkwood says:

    I love painting. I’ve been painting a lot of furniture lately. I’m just finishing up a friends dining room set. I use Annie Sloan chalk paint and I love it. They say no sanding but I always give my furniture a good clean and sand. Thank you for the post and have a great weekend. March Madness


  56. Debbie Rosalis says:

    March Madness !!!

  57. Jodi says:

    Hi Ladies!

    I just went yesterday and bought pure white Annie Sloan paint for my mantle. I love the transformation! I’m now ready to tackle another piece! Thank you for all of your recommendations. 🙂

    Jodi Carless

  58. Irene says:

    March madness, loved the live feed on instagram.

  59. Diana Gonzalez IG: dreamofcoffeeandhomedecor says:

    Thank you for this wonderful tutorial. I have the perfect starter piece to chalk paint. Now just need to buy the paint haha. Thank you again for the chance to participate in the March Madness.

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Diana, Welcome to the blog. We are so excited to have you join us here and also for March Madness. Our goal is for you to find tons of inspiration and motivation and also to feel a real friendship build with us. We hope you will continue to join us long after the giveaway is over. With gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  60. Kelly says:

    Thank you for all this information! I will be chalk painting my desk that my dad gave to me and feel very confident and inspired now! Love your Insta-stories – very fun and I look forward to them each day! Blessings…Kelly

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Oh my gosh, Kelly! That is so sweet! We love hearing that you love our stories, and of course it totally makes our day to hear this post was helpful. Our work is done:) haha! Thank you so much for your kind support…it truly means the world to us! We hope you continue to join us here on the blog and continue to be inspired. With love & gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  61. Keisha says:

    Good tips! That piano looks beautiful! I used Webster’s ChalkPaint Powder to redo an old toy box of my mothers. Add the powder to any latex paint…no prepping! Dries super fast too!! Check it out!
    March Madness!!

  62. Kelly Benzel says:

    These are all such great tips! I can’t wait to try, I already have so many things I want to paint. I think we have the same piano and now I have the inside scoop on do’s and don’ts for it.
    Such a fun march madness giveaway!

  63. Denice Hicks says:

    You are SO right about chalk painting being addictive! After my first try, I was like “chalk paint all the things!” Nothing was safe in my house and I love how it allowed me to freshen and brighten my home furnishings for very little investment. I actually bought chalk that can be added to any flat paint and use it with great success. It is much less expensive and the color options are endless. Great article. Thanks! March Madness!!

  64. Pamela says:

    Thank you for these instructions. They are so helpful as I’ve yet to chalk paint a piece. Your piano looks fantastic.

  65. Regina says:

    Love love love your piano!! I’m not giving up, March Madness!!!

  66. Melissa says:

    Love this post!

  67. Kayla Anderson says:

    Thank you for inspiring me to jump in with both feet! I have wanted to try chalk painting for a while now, but have always talked myself out of it in fear of ruining a perfectly good piece of furniture or decor. However, you’ve inspired me to conquer my fear and just do it. Thanks so much! Love, Kayla
    March Madness

  68. Rhonda Comus says:

    I’ve never chalk painted before but now I’ve got some ideas on a few things I’d like to try it on. Thanks for all the great tips. I’ll make sure I come back to this post for reference. Your piano turned out beautiful just like you gals are.
    ???????? March Madness ????????

  69. Amy Williams says:

    These are great tips for chalk painting. I agree it is addictive and so easy to transform a piece. I recently had streaks on a dark stained table that I painted so I was happy to find info on bleed thru! Keep up the great work! March madness is awesome!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Amy, Welcome to our blog. We are so happy you made it here and wish you luck with our giveaway. Try to come back and enter every day if you can! So glad to also hear that this post was helpful. The bleed through was somehow a little known topic…certainly in all my researching I had never heard of it. My number one goal of this post was to spread the word so others would have the same dilemma, or if they did would know how to solve. Your friends, Julie & Jodie

  70. Kristen says:

    This blog post was so inspiring ????????!! Great job and beautiful flower arrangements .i am currently moving and am looking for some fresh ideas for my new space ,and Wow!! I got so many amazing ideas from you blog posts ! Keep up thee amazing work ????????


    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Thank you Kristen, Your kind praise means so much.. We hope you will continue to enjoy our blog and come back and visit us often! Blessings, Julie & Jodie

  71. Marla Schaap says:

    Thanks for sharing your chalk paint tips and experience!! ????????March Madness Rocks!!????????

  72. march madness… I have been afraid to try painting with chalk paint, after reading this, I think I will give it a try. I have this cute piece that needs some love, it is in dire need of some chalk paint! wish me luck!!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Melissa, We wish you luck! You can do it. If all of us can dip that first brush into a can of chalk paint you can too. You are going to be so proud when you are done! And then you’ll be looking for your next piece! haha. We hope you will continue to enjoy our blog. With blessings, Julie & Jodie

  73. Monica McCue says:

    *don’t start with a piano* ???????? you girls are the best. #31daysofgiveaways

  74. Pamela says:

    Love this post on chalk paint!!! Please share all the before and after pieces you girls decide to chalk paint… such a fresh clean update for Spring! March Madness!

  75. Dori Fiedler says:

    Which brand is your go to for chalk paint? MARCH MADDNESS.

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Hi Dori, Honestly, just like I said in the post, I go by availability and color. I haven’t found notable difference in how they perform. I like the colors offered by Amy Howard and Cece Caldwell. Annie Sloan is just not conveniently located near where I shop, so that’s the only reason I haven’t used hers. Happy painting! XO ~ Julie

  76. Julie Badger says:

    Looking forward to trying this for the first time with an old dresser!

  77. Dee says:

    Although I have chalk painted many things in my home including the interior of my double front entry doors and a peninsula not to mention lots of furniture, I wanted to tell you how well written your article on chalk painting was! It is very concise and clear you did an excellent job describing all of the aspects of chalk painting and supply list! I wish that I had read this article when I had first started chalk painting it would have made things a lot easier for me. I think you just saved people a ton of money because they won’t need to go to a class when they have already been schooled! Congratulations on an excellent well-written article!

  78. Tammy says:

    Great information. March madness

  79. Jovita Chicki (jdguychickibabe) says:

    Hello Ladies!!
    Chalking Painting is my next project. Cant wait to begin!
    March Madness is fun!

  80. Jacki Duncan says:

    Such detailed pointers/tips! I’m loving how the piano looks!

  81. Ann @rekindledsigns says:

    I’m a big fan of chalk paint! Loved the tutorial! ADORE how gorgeous your piano turned out! I allow about two weeks for paint to cure (if it’s a table or dresser (a piece that will get a lot of use)! The wax takes much longer than the paint to cure. Love your MARCH MADNESS!! Such a great idea to get us hooked on your amazing Blog!

  82. Corey says:

    This is a post I plan to revisit this summer. I am so excited to try this. I have used chalk paint, and I so appreciate how detailed this post was. Thanks for showing the products you used. I LOVE the piano. I will be starting with something much smaller. You ladies are fantastic! Have a beautiful day, and thanks for spreading your love and positivity!

  83. Racheal Schwendiman says:

    So I’ve been following one of you on Instagram and then a couple of days ago I realized there are two of you! And then I found this blog! You guys are so much fun to follow. This blog post is absolutely wonderful. I’ve always wanted to try chalk paint, but I’ve been to scared. I love how you list everything you use and give a step by step of how you did it. Now I think I have the confidence to give it a try. You’re piano turned out so amazing! Oh and March Madness! ????

  84. Patti says:

    Today I took the plunge and started chalk painting my vintage trunk! I don’t think I’d have done it without “seeing” the process, however I must admit it’s a little scary seeing it after the first coat ????????
    Thanks for all the tips! Im wondering if I should paint the leather handles the same white as the trunk?
    March madness

  85. Britt says:

    Chalk paint is AMAZING! So easy and beautiful! Love all of your designs so so much! I am young and seeing all of your designs makes me so excited to one day design my own house????

  86. Marilyn says:

    I really want to chalk paint the piano my mother in law gave us. I feel like I’m standing next to the swimming pool having a hard time making the jump in. Thank you for your encouragement ????

  87. Marla Schaap says:

    I loved watching the transformation on your insta story several weeks ago. At first I was a bit nervous for you, but after that next coat of chalk paint, a real beauty shone through! After watching your amazing transformation, I had my husband paint an old antique buffet and, wow! I love it! Thanks so much for giving me the courage to try something new! Love and hugs to you both! Happy March Madness!???????????? And Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

  88. Cici Bule says:

    Chalk painting is my FAVORITE!! I have a few too many pieces haha and got a few hooked!
    ( MARCH MADNESS ????????????????????????)

  89. Sheron says:

    Well this is definitely one of my fears. I tried it using the spray paint and I don’t think it turned out that great. I’m gonna try it again on a bar cart I purchased for cheap. I’m still scared but your words are always so inspiring and It makes me believe I can do it… wish me luck..

  90. Taylor Wozniak says:

    Love love love! I am currently on the hunt for a dresser to redo and I am going to use chalk paint so this was super helpful! (March madness)
    Thank you girls. I love your blog and Instagram!

  91. Jennifer LaCombe says:

    Thank you for giving details about how to apply and what extras should be used with chalk paint. I painted both my kid’s dressers in chalk paint and opted to not finish them with wax. However, my daughter’s dresser is used as a changing station and now we have color transfer from our jeans I guess rubbing off the paint. Wish I would have used wax ????. Thank you for all the great tips and inspiring spring decor. Spring is such a happy season lol. ????March Madness????

  92. Sandra Hooper says:

    March Madness ????????

  93. Regina says:

    Thank you so much for this blog!!!! I have learned so much and look forward to using the tips I have learned through this blog. I love chalk paint! ???? March Madness!!! ????

  94. Amanda Lopez says:

    this was my favorite project!!! You ladies are too cute <3 Please pick me for your giveaway 🙂

  95. AnneH says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I want to run to The Salvation Army Thrift store right now and pick up a little side table! I think I will take your advice and find a smaller piece of home decor to try first. I have several pieces here that either my husband or late father in law made. They are dark wood and I would love to paint them. Not sure if I can sell the hubby on that. Thank you for your fun March Madness Month!

  96. Lisabeth says:

    Ok now I know what to do with my old dresser, Thank you so much! ????❤ MARCH MADNESS

  97. Kristen says:

    What would you recommend priming an older piece of furniture with? (To avoid the yellow staining coming through a does it need to be stripped and sanded basically?) Thank You! Very helpful and informative!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Hi Kristen,
      Please read our more recent chalk painting blog post that answers this very question, “How to Fall in Love with Chalk Painting: It’s Easier Than You Think” It has two of our recommended products linked directly in the post. You will not have to strip and sand…that is the beauty of chalk painting.
      Good luck,

  98. jm says:

    Thank you for such detailed information. I am addicted to painting anything I can, lol.. I just finished baseboards and stone fireplace. But the two projects I have wanted to tackle the most are my kitchen cabinets (thank you for recommending latex) and my piano which was given to me over 40 years ago by my grandmother so I cant imagine how old it is. Its in great shape, no scrtatches etc.. but to me the color is such an eyesore. Its also shiny? I have read last year and just reread your post today. But I just want to get it right. I dont know what I would do if I messed it up? Do you recommend sanding first because of the shine? which I’m not sure if the shine is varnish? Or would a flat primer be better then shellac? Also did you have to tape the keyboards and how was that done? Sorry if I missed it in your post. Thank you so much..

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      The shine on your piano will be easily covered by whatever painting method you choose. How you go about it will depend on the end result you want and what kind of paint you use. If you are using chalk paint because of the age of the piano you should prime it as I say in the post. It’s not difficult to cover the shine, but it is difficult to cover the tannins in the original finish. You should definitely tape around the keys if you want a professional-looking job. Good luck and thanks for reading, Julie

  99. Tina Carpenter says:

    Thank you so much ladies! I’ve been wanting to learn to chalk paint, but didn’t know where to start. On an old piece, you said to use primer first. Is there a primer specifically for chalk painting? Thank you!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Hi Tina,
      If you are painting an old piece and expect bleeding or want to take precaution we like Zinsser products, Zinsser Bulls Eye Shellac if covering a couple spots, or Zinsser Bulls Eye 123 if covering the whole piece. Sometimes you might need several coats. Don’t worry if you have already started to paint and find some bleeding. You can paint primer on top of a coat of paint and then keep going. Good luck, Julie & Jodie

  100. Carroll says:

    I want to paint my bathroom vanity it has a covering of the crap that looks like wood. Do the same instructions apply. Thank you. C

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      I wouldn’t recommend chalk painting any surface that sees a lot of wear and needs to be cleaned, so I think you should use a strong enamel paint instead. I hope this makes sense.
      Lots of love,
      Jodie & Julie

  101. Victoria says:

    How well does chalk paint/wax seal hold up against high heat? I already chalk painted our tile fireplace surround and was going to put on the wax soon, but I just found out our house will be getting a heat treatment next week that will bring inside temperatures to 140 degrees. Should I do the wax now or wait until after that? Hoping it all holds up okay…

  102. […] due to the risks of exposing chalk paint to the elements, paint with topcoat may last less than unprotected chalk paint. The painted paint on a porch or patio door can be left unfinished to make it easier and more […]

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