I love Annie Sloan! She'll never carry my groceries in and I'll never buy her paint but I will pay homage to this amazing decor diva who has validated my love of the sweet perfection of slopped on, scraped down and otherwise abused painted furniture. I used to hesitate about painting furniture first because of all that nasty prep, then the tedious attention to detail in making sure the surface was nearly perfect and finally being somewhat disappointed in the result because the paint looks so plastic. Annie, and I think I can call her that because we would naturally become BFF's if she were to stop by and see what she has inspired me to do, has introduced me to a whole new way of looking at paint. Okay so I guess chalk paint isn't new but our Annie is making it her own and that has inspired me to do the same...only different.
Don't get me wrong Annie is fab but her stuff has two obvious flaws. One, it stinks (the wax), so it can't be used indoors without major ventilation and that's a problem for apartment dwellers like me. Two, it is freakishly expensive. So what is a redneck reno queen like myself to do? Figure out how to make it cheap of course. Now I'm not saying that I can make Annie Sloan chalk paint because I haven't got a clue what her formula is but if you follow my kind of logic paint + chalk (calcium carbonate) = chalk paint. The first piece I painted with the real deal cost me about $14.00 in paint. The second cost about $2.00 because I added chalk to some paint leftover from painting my living room and tossed in some Golden acrylic for pigment. I couldn't tell the difference between the real and the homemade as far as how it went on, sanded etc, it behaved beautifully. If you want to give it a go I mixed it two parts paint to 1 part CC and then threw in a couple tbsp of water to smooth it out. I have experimented with mixing up batches of various leftover paints and it doesn't seem to alter the premixed colour dramatically with the exception of reds, which do appear to lighten up quite a bit.
Next I had to solve the issue of stinky wax so back to Google and wow, so many choices. Basically you can take beeswax, melt it down and add an oil or a solvent - presto furniture polish. I've experimented with several recipes posted but my favorite one so far is purified beeswax melted and odorless mineral spirits (organic solvent derived from paraffin). This works super well and can easily be tinted with acrylic to make a darker or coloured wax. It may not be the environmental choice though and I am going back to experiment some more with the beeswax/oil mixes when I need another batch.
So there you have it, Screaming Mimi's
yes-you-can in a can and Buff Mimi sealer. So far my colour choices are: Mimi's little red rooster, Magic Beans, Fowl Eggs and Screaming Green. So far I
have just been altering ready mix paints or tinting with acrylics but I just
picked up some powder pigment and we’ll see
how that mixes in next.
I can't wait to take this latest little project outside and nestle it among some potted plants.