Martha Leone Design
Martha Leone Design
  • Hometalker
  • Reston, VA

The Two Hour Piece


Some of my furniture renovations take time, lots of time. Sometimes I need a break from those time-intensive pieces. A break for me means that I whip out a nice cool neutral color, turn it into homemade chalk paint and cover a large piece like this one. Homemade chalk is easy to make: 3 parts paint to 1 part Plaster of Paris. Mix the PoP with enough water to get a soft peanut buttery consistency then add the paint and mix very well. It will need sanding after painting. Seal it with wax or poly. I used Minwax Wipe-On Polyurethane on this piece because it's strong and super easy to apply.
the two hour piece, chalk paint, painted furniture
If you want maximum impact, don't fight the old finish... put a light color on top. When the distressing is done, you'll achieve beautiful contrast between the dark/light.
If you want maximum impact, don't fight the old finish... put a light color on top. When the distressing is done, you'll achieve beautiful contrast between the dark/light.
Full shot with original hardware.
Full shot with original hardware.
the two hour piece, chalk paint, painted furniture
Martha Leone Design

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3 of 9 comments
  • Lisa
    on Mar 3, 2014

    I recently painted a few pieces with homemade chalk paint, using a slightly different ratio of PoP to water and then added one sample container of Velspar paint. Loved how they came out! I did read not to clean everything out in the sink because PoP could subsequently harden in your drains. I don't know if other materials used to make chalk paint will do the same thing. Oh, and very recently I saw a you tube video of Annie Sloan painting and waxing a piece. Very informative. Especially when she explains how to wax and why. So far, on my pieces, I've just done the poly wipe on stuff to seal the pieces. I'm definitely still learning, but I say if I can do it, anyone can! Thanks for showing your dresser makeover. I love it!

  • Martha Leone Design
    on Mar 8, 2014

    Hi Lisa: I'm glad you're painting and enjoying it. Just a quick piece of advice that I wish I had known when I started my business two years ago... At the time, I sealed everything with poly wipe-on since it was sooo easy to apply and didn't leave paint brush marks on the furniture. I also used Varathane water-based polyurethanes. Both of these products yellow my white furniture although some people claim that Varathane doesn't yellow a piece. Wax is the best bet for white furniture. You probably already know this but wanted to share this info with you as I have had to repaint a few white over the past couple of years because of the yellowing.

    • Lisa
      on Mar 9, 2014

      At this early stage, Martha, I will take any advice I can get! So far, I've painted two old metal multi-drawer units in a custom teal, which I haven't sealed yet, and a damaged laminated night stand in a light shade of green. That's the one I used the poly on. As yet, I haven't painted anything white, but will definitely keep your advice in mind when I do. Thank you!

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