…chalk paint q&a’s

Hi Painters! Here are you Chalk Paint Q&As!

Where do you paint in the wintertime?

Great question! If you’ve been painting for a while you know that it does not work in the cold weather. No type of paint likes cold weather. It gets sticky and clumps and becomes a huge mess. Bring your pieces inside or buy some heaters for your garage.


After I have waxed, I will see some spots that look shiny and they appear to be where I have sanded to get the wood to come through.  I am not getting an even finish.  Is that the shabby look?  If not, what am I doing wrong and can I fix it?

After using your clear wax you should have the same sheen on the entire surface. In order to do this make sure you use enough clear wax and cover every inch of the piece. It will then all match in color and sheen.

When you paint the dressers, do you do the inside of the drawers as well or just the exterior?

No, I do not paint the interior of the drawers and I don’t know any painters that do.


I’m working out of my unheated garage. Do you know at what temp point I should bring the paint inside? I don’t want to ruin it since it is so expensive.

Don’t worry about your paint getting too hot in a heated garage. I work all summer long and it gets up to 100 degree here w/ humidity!

I am painting a dining table & am concerned that the wax will not be enough protection for the top considering the amount of use that the table will see.  Have you found the wax to be enough & if so what is your recommendation for cleaning/care?

I have found that the wax is enough and as the table wears, the shabby look will just enhance. If you are not happy with the idea of this then you can totally use a poly on top. I just don’t like this look personally. You will be fine with wax. Be sure you let it dry for a few days then clean as you would any kitchen surface.

I may like a small add on your blog. Can I do it with my Etsy shop?

Yes! Some of my sponsors have websites and others have FB pages and Etsy shops as links. Come join me!

What do you use to distress pieces done in graphite? I have tried various methods and they all seem to leave scratches/lighter areas. Am i doing something wrong?

No, you are not doing anything wrong. You will find that with darker colors when you go to sand you will see scratches and white lines and it looks terrible. Good news – this goes away once you put the clear wax on. Keep going.


Do you have any pointers or suggestions for those of us who are happy with our stained wood furniture, but would like to mix in ASCP neutrals?  For instance, although my dining room table and Welsh hutch are beautifully stained, I would like to add an ASCP buffet or console to the room.

Yes, it’s a lovely idea to mix and match your dining area. I would recommend – like I always do- a neutral. My favorite color for a dining room is French Linen. It’s classy and will also blend well.

I feel like I may be missing a step. What exactly is buffing? I wax with a brush and immediately wipe with cheese cloth-to smooth and get off excess. Is that buffing? Or is there something more to buffing?

Yes, that is buffing. Basically rubbing the clear wax into your piece until you see a bit of a sheen.

Are you able to paint over a piece with Annie Sloan paint after you waxed it if you don’t like the color?


Do you paint and distress all the under parts of a piece that you sell? I sometimes feel like Im cheating my buyer by not doing it. Esp when its getting loading or unloading or while its on its side, you can see the underside parts and they don;t match the top/sides. Is that just me?

I totally hear you. No, I do not paint underneath and I’ve purchased and seen plenty of painted pieces and it’s not common.

I was wondering how many coats of clear wax you recommend for a coffee table that people are going to want to put drinks on (hopefully using coasters but you never know…).

I only do one coat of clear wax on any piece. I make sure it’s fully covered and dry always.

Also-I have been steering clear of dark wax because I do not love the muddy look when I have used it. If I use it just in certain places then the places I have used the dark wax look so much different. I understand that chalk painted pieces are not suppose to be consistent-but I feel like I am still “doing it wrong”??

There is no wrong! It’s paint after all. If you are happy with what you produced and love it in your home that’s all that matters.

I am repainting my kitchen table and chairs. But my living situation right now is that I am living with my in-laws so my table is out in the shed. After I am done waxing it will it be okay during the cold winter months? I live in northern Utah and we get a lot of snow and it gets really cold. So will my furniture be okay?

Yes, I have left pieces in my garage all winter and it gets very cold here. There shouldn’t be an issue.

I’m wanting to achieve the “weathered” Restoration Hardware look on some bar stools but, I don’t have Oak.  Not too sure what kind of wood it is but, it doesn’t have any lines in it.  It’s real wood just a different finish.  Do you have some advice for me on getting this look and what I can do to achieve it.

Well, to get this look you really need oak with those deep set lines/texture in it. I have many pieces of RH furniture and if you touch it it is textured. The paint will sit in these places and then you wipe the paint on the smooth surfaces and that’s how you see the weathered look. Sorry to say that you won’t get it with a smooth piece.

Do you sand the overall piece to smooth it out before waxing? If so, with which grit?

No, not unless I need to go over it because some paint clumped or dripped.

Have you ever done a vanity body in a color then left the veneer tops to poly or wax, they are nice wood on the tops. 

Personally, I don’t really see a need in maintaining veneer. If you had a solid wood top on a table then that is beautiful. Veneer just isn’t. Paint it all.

Only one question for you…do you usually do your painting in a dress?

Ha! You saw a photo of me presenting at the Home and Remodeling Show and yes, I wanted to dress up and liked it. I also wore huge, dangling earrings!


Was wondering if you have painted the wood trim on the sofa and chairs pictured? Have you had any issues with painting in close proximity to fabric? Or having wax rub off on fabric? I have almost the same sofa and was considering ASCP graphite , but was concerned about rub off.

TAPE! Do not do any painting near fabric unless you’ve taped. You will not be happy if you ruin the entire piece.

We’ve just recently built a farmhouse table out of pine. My plan is to stain the top and use ASCP in Old White on the legs. My question is would you stain the legs too so when I sand the dark color of the wood would come through or just use the dark wax to create the distressed areas?

No need. Just paint your legs and stain your top separately.


Is it possible to paint over a leather top coffee table?

Yes. Just be aware that the texture will be different.

Have you used clear or dark wax on freshly stained or even raw wood before?    

No, I haven’t. I guess you could, but it’s a different look for a stained piece of furniture. I think of a matte poly or a rough surface for this type of piece.


  1. Hi — I love your blog! I’ve used the white Annie Sloan chalk paint and both waxes on several pieces of furniture and love it — this weekend I’m contemplating painting my large ugly 90’s golden oak dining room table Graphite and then applying the dark wax — have you used this color before? Don’t want it to look light gray????

  2. Hi Christine
    It looks like you use mainly real wood furniture. Would you know how good ASCP is on other material? I’ve just bought some units which are whiter than I thought and want them more of a cream colour, hubby says they are wood so they should be ok, but the shelves they will sit under are not wood, just made to look like beech! do you think il be ok to paint them to as I want them the same colour as the units.

    Also like to say your instructions have inspired me – you make it look easier than I imagined, looked for something in the UK but yours was by far the best thank you


  3. Tracy Schroeder says:

    Just wondering if there is anything wrong with using Chalk Paint in cold weather.. I work in my garage and it is pretty cold here in Vancouver BC and I don’t know if it will dry or not? Any idea? Thank you…PS LOVE your blog!

  4. Hello. I painted a piece of furniture yesterday afternoon with Chalk paint. It went on so smooth and nice. Today I went to put a second coat on and it gunked up and pulled the first coat of paint up. I painted in the house too. I used this same paint on a few projects a month or so ago when the weather was nice and warm. Can the cold weather be doing this…Help!

Speak Your Mind