Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Small Half-round Side Table

 Before & After

I purchased this small wooden side table over a year ago and not quite sure how I wanted to finish it, left it sitting in our garage with my other projects until I could get to it.  The finish on it wasn’t in the best shape, was peeling and quite damaged along the legs and there were some fairly bad scratches on the bottom shelf.

The other day I decided to try a DIY chalk paint on it. (not the same as chalk board paint)  The amazing thing about chalk paint is that the furniture requires NO prep.  Nothing!  No sanding & no priming – even if the current finish isn’t great.  I thought this little table would be the best candidate to see how true that was.  The “real” stuff isn’t cheap, so that wasn’t an option for me right now.  I started hearing of a DIY chalk paint with basic ingredients,  so I thought I would give it a try!  There are a few different options I’ve heard of, but the one I chose only used two ingredients – both of which I currently had on hand!  They are flat latex paint and powdered Plaster of Paris.  Yup, that’s it!  

The recipe I found used 1 cup of flat paint to 1/3 cup of Plaster of Paris.  I had a Behr paint sample on hand that I’d purchased awhile ago and thought it would be perfect.  Paint samples are cheap (I think it was $5), come in any color you want,  are usually flat paint and the Behr ones are 236 ml which is just shy of the 250ml required.  I decided to take a chance and just use that. I mixed it with the Plaster of Paris and came up with a thick, lumpy, gritty mess.  I was sure it was going to be a disaster!  With a regular paint brush, I started brushing it on – and was thrilled when the paint started to smooth out and the gritty bits disappeared.  The first coat dried fairly quickly.  Unlike regular paint, the table had a very rough texture to it.  I lightly went over it with some 220 grit sandpaper and noticed very quickly how easy it was to sand.  I added two more coats of white, lightly sanding before and after each one.  Because it was so easy to sand, I used a little more pressure along the edges to remove the paint and allow some of the wood to show through.   

What really surprised me is how much paint I still have left!  Even after 3 coats, I’ve still got over ¾ of my mixture left!  Plenty for a couple more small projects!

I decided I wanted to try a “wash” over it, so I mixed up a small batch of light grey chalk paint and added some water to thin it out.  I brushed a single coat on and once dry, sanded most of it off.  After that, I added a layer of Minwax Paste Finishing Wax in natural.  

I’ve never used wax before but will definitely use it again.  It was easy to apply and left a beautiful sheen when buffed.  With the white and grey paint and the sheen of the wax, the finish reminds me of a pearl!  I think it’s very pretty.

I’m thrilled with the way this little table turned out and will definitely try more pieces with chalk paint.  This little table has been added to my shop and is available for purchase.

Thanks for stopping by!

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