Chalk paint vs wood grain

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I used three coats of red chalk paint on a nightstand redo and the wood grain is still coming through. It's not a terrible look but had hoped for a solid finish. Any ideas how to fix the problem without starting over?
  10 answers
  • Trish Davenport Trish Davenport on Jan 04, 2015
    It's all about the primer. Betcha forgot that part. You can still use the primer over the chalk paint and repaint with your red. I'd try tinting the primer too, that helps.
  • Dee Dee on Jan 05, 2015
    Chalk paint isa primer. Just adages morecoats. I did a wine colored headboard and it took 7 coats of paint to get it the way I wanted it to look. reds are hard to work with, don't give up.if you do not have enough paint,just go buy a few samples. Now is also the time to make the the red paint darker with anew sample.
  • Dee Dee on Jan 05, 2015
    Another thought, use dark wax over the finished night stand, it will give it a beautiful shine. My next project is also a night stand to match the headboard. Good. Luck!
  • Marion Nesbitt Marion Nesbitt on Jan 05, 2015
    Have an oak veneered storage closet door that I painted. Know what you mean about the grain. Don't get it. It was primed, and I use good quality paints. Has never happened to anything else. Maybe parts of the grain were a little raised although it felt smooth. One of life's mysteries.
  • Chalk paint is not really meant for a super smooth and sleek surface. Also, priming is not usuallly necessary with chalk paint. HOWEVERE, nothing really sticks well to grease. I would just put on another couple coats with a fine grit sandpaper in between coats.
  • Also, oak tends to have sections of tighter grain and sections of more open grain. If you're looking for a really smooth finish, 2-3 coats with polycrylic should do it. Ins
  • Victoria Cross Victoria Cross on Jan 05, 2015
    You needed to prime it first; a coat of sealer needs to be put on knotholes before priming so they don't pop through. You can have the primer tinted if you're doing a dark color so you don't have to put as many coats on.
  • PattyAnn PattyAnn on Jan 05, 2015
    I had my oak cabinets painted and the painter primed and did 3 coats to give good cover and you can still see the grain but it adds detail and looks great. I was told that when oak is painted the grain generally shows. I would use the antiquing wax and embrace the grain.
  • HC HC on Jan 07, 2019

    Actually, the only way to completely hide any "upraised oak grain" is to take a compound filler (some people use a wood filler, but I like the compound joint filler better) and use a spackle knife to spread it. You only need a thin coating to fill the heavy grained areas, and then, you want to allow dry time and lightly sand to get it smooth (Fine sandpaper - not too rough). After that, I would use a primer for insurance of good adhesion, and then, you can go ahead and apply the chalk paint. You should get a smooth finish with zero visible grain.


    Oak is a tricky one to cover, and most people think a primer will hide the grainy look it gives, but primer won't hide it - primer only dulls it down a bit.

  • Gloria j carson Gloria j carson on Jan 19, 2020

    I'm thinking about chalking my coffee table. It's a maple color. I'm not sure what color to use ? My furniture is a brown. Please help.

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