Chalk Paint Decorative Paint FAQ’s

Below you will find a helpful list of “frequently asked questions” that should answer many of your questions about Annie Sloan’s, revolutionary,  Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint. If you have any additional questions, please click here to contact us with your questions or comments.
Chalk Paint Decorative Paint developed by Annie Sloan is considered by many to be the "Best Furniture Paint" in the World.

What is Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint?
Annie Sloan created Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint, as all natural paint specifically for furniture painting, that could be treated as a wash or could be easily manipulated by the artist using it. It was designed to create time-worn and decorative finishes. It comes in 30 unique decorative and historical colors that can be mixed to make a custom look. It’s simply amazing!

No prepping required. No more sanding, no more priming. No more removing old wax or varnish. This paint will stick to wood, laminate, plastic, terra cotta, stone, bricks, concrete, and metal. It can literally be used on any surface!

What makes it unique, is it environmentally safe?
Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint is water based, environmentally safe and has proven itself over the past 20 years as a durable and reliable, revolutionary –  new type of paint!

  • Virtually odorless
  • Highly concentrated – (1 can covers approx. 150 sq ft), it goes a long way!
  • High Quality Acrylic Paint
  • Quick Drying
  • Breathable
  • Mold and mildew resistant
  • Water-based & Easy Clean Up
  • Environmentally safe
  • Non-toxic, Low VOC’s, (Volatile Organic Compounds)
  • Made in the USA
What surfaces can you use it on?
Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint’s superior “gripping power” will easily adhere to wood, laminate, melamine, particle board, plastic, plaster, drywall, terra cotta stone, bricks, concrete, and metal.

It can literally be used on any interior or exterior surface, including painted and/or varnished surfaces for furniture; it can even be used to paint fabric, canvas, burlap and leather!

Finished projects are left with a velvety matte finish or can be buffed/waxed to produce a soft luster. Create plaster effects on walls. Floors can be painted solid or painted with a translucent wash and sealed with Annie Sloan Floor Lacquer™.

Great for outdoor use, it will distress and fade naturally without peeling. This paint also allows walls to breathe and is perfect for damp, high humidity areas. It’s flexible, so you can be creative and paint right over an existing color if change your mind. This paint can be washed off of your brush with water, even a week later!
Who is Annie Sloan?
Annie Sloan has a master’s degree in Fine Art and resides in Oxford, England. Annie developed Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint based on her extensive knowledge of paint, pigments and art history over 20 years ago.

She wanted a paint that would be “easy to use” and could have many applications either as a thin “wash” to a thick “impasto” allowing for different looks and styles. Adding a little water to the paint, will make it smoother; Leaving the lid off will thicken it up; or make it into a wash by adding additional water to it. Use flat brushes for a smooth look or bristle brushes for a more textured aged look. The color palette was based on the popular colors from the 18th century and can be easily mixed to create additional hues and tints as needed.

The paint is extremely easy to work with and was developed to “encourage the creative process.” The paint is easy to prepare, mix and allows the artist “to change their mind” easily during the application process!

Annie commonly calls it, “a girl’s paint, but boys can use it too.” She has authored numerous books and is recognized as a leading authority for decorative painting and is well known for her “old world, European look and distinctive style.”
What kind of surface preparation is required?
No need to prime, sand or strip, period! No need to removed old wax or varnish, it is that easy!
How do you care for your new finish?
Please treat your newly-finished piece of furniture as you would a fine fabric or antique – with respect!
  • All water-based furniture finishes need 21-28 days to cure (or even longer if there are several layers of wax!). Avoid excessive handling.
  • Do not place water glasses or sharp objects on it.
  • For regular cleaning, use a soft, dry cloth.
  • When removing unwanted stains, use a slightly damp cloth or chamois with mild soap and water; do not use any abrasive products or tools.
  • Avoid all contact with liquid and spray furniture polishes.
  • Avoid excessive water; wax is by nature water resistant but will spot if not wiped immediately.
  • Use place mats and coasters on tabletops.
  • Wax is alcohol soluble; do not use it in bar areas.
What are some common application techniques?
Here are some of Annie Sloan’s Top Application Techniques for Applying Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint:

  • Make Sure You Use the Right Paint for the Job – “The paint needs to be responsive to allow you to work in a practical, flexible way. Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint can be used in a variety of ways – as a wash, with or without texture, or applied thickly. Usually you only need to apply one coat, but where two coats are necessary, apply the first one with a large brush.
  • ”Working With a Good Palette of Colors is Important, as is Being Able to Mix Them“ – I use a palette of ready mixed neutrals with stronger colors, working on the premise that you can lighten strong colors but cannot make a light strong color. Our colors can be lightened with Old White or you can use Country Grey to give a color a little complexity. Waxes can change a color as well…”
  • Find a Good Brush“ – I find that working with a brush that is bristle is the best. The hairs should be fairly long and flexible with a little bounce to allow you to be expressive with your work.
  • ”Wax On, Wax Off “ – I wax more or less everything I paint to get the right finish for my furniture and walls. I find it makes my projects strong and gives them a beautiful workable finish. I recommend you use a wax that is soft and can easily be applied with a small brush. If you want to get the job done quickly and are feeling confident, you can use a larger brush. After adding a layer of clear wax you can choose to apply a dark wax to change the color, or add paint to the clear wax to alter the finish.”
  • Think About the Finish and Texture – “For a distressed look you need to be able to sand the waxed surface to reveal the wood or another coat of paint – use a selection of fine, medium and course grade sandpapers. Have a good supply of cloths so you can wipe brushes, polish wax, apply and wipe off paint, and clean.”
What other products or supplies are recommneded for use with Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint?
Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint includes the following popular products and supplies:
  • Chalk Paint® Soft Wax – Available in Clear & Dark
  • Gilding Wax
  • Paint Brush – Available in Small, Medium & Large
  • Wax Brush – Available in Small & Large
  • Annie Sloan’s popular Books including “Quick & Easy Paint Transformations,” “Creating the French Look,” and her newest release, “Chalk Paint, Annie Sloan’s Work Book!”

How is Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint Different from Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint
Chalk Paint® Decorative Paint

  • Low Voc’s, water based, one quart covers 150 sf
  • Premixed
  • Opaque finish when applied full strength
  • Adheres to many surfaces without priming, sanding or stripping.
  • Adheres to wood,stone, concrete,metal,fabric, varnish.
  • Can be sanded easily to create a distressed finish
  • Seal with Annie Sloan soft wax
  • Seal floors with Annie Sloan lacquer

Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint

  • Water based, Low Voc’s, one quart covers 70 sf
  • Powder form
  • More translucent finish
  • Adheres to porous surfaces. Can adhere to other surfaces with the addition of a bonding agent.
  • Will resist some (not all) painted or varnished surfaces and will naturally self distress (chip or peel).
  • Seal with Miss Mustard Seed furniture wax or hemp oil