The first recipe came from a wonderful blog called Elizabeth & Co.
So, here we go. I mixed the Plaster of Paris with a bit of water first to create a smooth, liquidy paste without lumps. I added FLAT latex paint and mixed thoroughly. I then added a little more water so it was about the consistency of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP).
My experience: The paint covered well, maybe even a little better than ASCP. I added a second coat within an hour. It is nice that it dries so quickly. When completely dry this recipe has a grittier feel than ASCP. I found that I needed to lightly sand the whole piece prior to adding the clear wax, but this may be just fine with you if you are planning on distressing your piece anyway. Another downside, was that the Plaster of Paris lightened my original paint color a little. I wished I had gone just a shade darker. After waxing, the end result was a smooth finish, but still not quite as smooth as ASCP.
Cost: This is the good part. The Valspar paint sample I purchased from Lowe's was $2.94 and the four pound container of Dap Plaster of Paris (which will last forever!) was $6.48. This made enough paint to cover a medium sized piece of furniture with two coats of paint.
Recipe #2 comes from LizMarie. This is another blog I am in love with. LizMarie covers of wide spectrum of DIY projects and hosts a great linky party!
This recipe didn't actually mention adding water but the unsanded grout and paint mixture was a little thick so I ended up adding a bit of water to bring it to the right consistency. I think the next time I'll mix the grout with some cool water before adding the paint, just like I did with recipe #1.
My experience: This paint covered well, even a little better than Recipe #1. It dried a little gritty but not as rough as Recipe #1. I did sand it before adding soft wax as I wanted this piece to be heavily distressed. When I sanded, I noticed several white specks appeared on the piece, showing through the blue. Though I mixed the paint and grout well, maybe an electric mixer would have alleviated this problem. All I had to do was dry brush some of my paint over these spots. No big deal. The unsanded grout didn't seem to lighten the color of the paint. It took the wax well and polished up beautifully. Overall - I love the piece I created but, maybe if I wasn't planning on heavy sanding, ASCP would've been my choice.
Cost: $2.94 for the color sample, $11.78 for ten pounds of unsanded grout. Again, this will last me next to forever!
Recipe #3 comes from another one of my favorites sites, No Minimalist Here. Sherry, the author of this blog, is a true artist when it comes to painting furniture. She is an inspiration to me.
The great thing about THIS recipe is that Calcium Carbonate is CHALK! The bad news, for me, was that it was nowhere to be found in the city where I live. I tried health food stores, compounding pharmacies, vitamin stores . . . all to no avail. Many places carry Calcium Carbonate pills, but not in powder form. Not to worry though. While I was driving around the city I decided to search out this elusive ingredient on my iPhone, found and ordered it on Amazon.com, and two days later there it was on my doorstep. I knew my iPhone would eventually be put to better use than just phone calls and texting! Thank you dear hubby, for insisting that I needed one.
My experience: Again, this recipe didn't actually call for water but this time I decided to add a little to the Calcium Carbonate to make sure it was smooth before adding to the paint. It covered pretty well. I've decided that coverage depends upon the thickness of the paint, not the "chalk" added to the paint and I just prefer two coats, even with ASCP. When dry, the surface of my piece was smooth, like ASCP. It distressed easily with a sanding sponge. I did notice just a few white specks, not as many as with Recipe #2 but this was an easy fix. The color remained true to my color chip, the wax went on nicely and the finish has a soft and beautiful glow. Recipe #3 is the winner of the three!
Cost: $2.94 for the color sample, $5.19 (plus shipping) for 12 ounces of Now Foods Calcium Carbonate Powder. Next time I will order in bulk. Five pounds costs only $10.75 and would again, probably last forever!
So, how does the best of the homemade chalk paint recipes compare to Annie Sloan? Well, ASCP is still my favorite. I am going to tackle painting my kitchen cabinets this summer and I will definitely be using ASCP because of it's great colors (Old White is my color of choice) and reliability. For some of the pieces of furniture I've collected (now stacking up in my garage) I'm looking forward to having some fun experimenting with the many colors available at my Lowe's, mixed with Calcium Carbonate.
Oh by the way, one other plus to having Calcium Carbonate powder around the house, one level teaspoon per day, added to orange or tomato juice "provides the highest concentrations of elemental calcium, making it an optimal formulation for supporting healthy bones and teeth"! LOL!
Let me know about your chalk paint experiences (I'd love to see pictures) and please don't forget to visit the blogs I've linked to above. You'll be glad you did.
Life to the full to you.