…the bella desk in annie sloan graphite

Once upon a time I had a client that wanted black paint. A true black. I was not working with a true black at the time and so I set out to experiement. I ended up with Cece Caldwell that makes one and the piece turned out great. Many of my readers told me how I could achieved black using different methods. One was using dark wax over Graphite. I wanted to try this technique out on one of my pieces before I tried it for a client.


A dear friend of the family’s offered me some GORGEOUS pieces that in all honesty did not need paint. They were beautiful. I knew when I saw the desk I wanted a dark color. So, I painted the desk Graphite and once I completed 2 coats of paint, one of clear wax and then the dark wax – ALL. OVER. THE. PIECE.



I still like to rough up my pieces so even when I applied the dark wax with my rag I did not worry about being too pretty about it.





Then this happened. It’s a Graphite miracle.

The Bella Desk (named for my newest niece)…$450 (shipping available via USHIP)


As you know, I use Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan for my projects as well as the refinishing work that I do. I am comfortable with her product and know the color line and waxes.

I do, however, think it’s important to know what is out there and how other paints work. Stifel & Capra started carrying Cece Caldwell and when I had a client show up with a console that she needed to be a dark black, it was time to try it out.

Here is what the console looked like when it arrived at my house.


The black made by Cece Caldwell is called Beckley Coal and it is a real black. She also makes a wax line as well.


If you have been using ASCP and try out a new line of furniture paint, you will notice some differences immediately. This Cece Caldwell paint was more tacky for me to use. It was not as clean on my brushes if that makes any sense and just a bit more gooey. But, it was definitely black.


Here it is in process. You will notice that it is shiny and very black.

Since I was not used to working with this product I decided to repaint my entry table in the Becklyn Coal so I could have some practice. I was happy I was getting the right color, but I must admit that I wasn’t in love with the way the wax handled. You will find it is more of a candle was and a bit stiffer than Annie’s. I also found that it left a bit of a salty residue in the places where I did not buff completely. I had to go over these places again to ensure that it covered this.

Here is the finished product. I think it turned out beautifully and was the true black that my client was looking for. IMG_3542




If you are looking for black this is a great way to get it. Just be aware that handles differently. If you are not completly sold on having a true black, Graphite is a lovely, rich color that I actually prefer.