SK and G.D. Gunderson Designs Painted Upholstery.

Georgia is one of those innately clever people. Her instinctual design sense goes bone deep. Georgia's ability to layer and change and layer again is always an amazing process to watch.
Each time I visit her beautiful home I gaze in wonderment at her vignettes. So thoughtfully and carefully crafted, but again looking so natural and carefree.
She received a painted wingback chair from me many years ago and wanted a little update and facelift for her pretty little chair.
This beautifully built chair is thirty years old or more. It's life as a new chair began with a pink tone on tone brocade fabric.

I couldn't part with her for many years just because she was so carefully hand-crafted. Yet I wouldn't use her because of the ghastly pink fabric.
Clean as I much as I could, the stains were non removable.
Her second life was painted with a Amish Black chalk paint ten years ago.

The first and second coat felt like a disaster. But the third and final coat was beautiful.

Now to bring her into a new life and new place to reside.
Georgia wanted to brighten up her space, but not loose the Amish Black of the piece. The seat back and fronts of the arms were painted an antique cream custom chalk paint. The black stripe was added to pull the colors together.

I made a mock-up (pictured above) of a black damask curl down the sides of the stripe. She choose to keep this pretty piece simple. So get away from the paint sk.
This piece was clear paste waxed and buffed. The paint will not crack, nor will it come off on clothes, It feels like embossed and smooth leather.

Painted upholstery has existed for many centuries but until now the craft was not usable for the home painter.

With the onset of chalk paint and upholstery medium the task has become well known and well used.

SK's Custom Chalky Paint Recipe

1 Part Powdered and sifted Calcium Carbonate. I buy mine from Par Lumber. Salem Oregon. You can buy it online too. I just have an aversion to waiting for the post.

1 Part Calcium Carbonate (Ground Chalk)

2 Parts flat latex Paint

A couple of drops of water. Maybe a tablespoon.

I sift my ground chalk to get any odd lumps out. Then add the 2 parts flat paint.

I mix with a hand held stick blender in a mason jar. Keep the lid, cap and rim of the jar clean. It will dry and make taking the lid on and off a real chore.

Thanks for visiting.

Frequently asked questions
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3 of 11 questions
  • Kirsty Montgomery Kirsty Montgomery on Jul 09, 2019

    I love your work! Can I ask if this fabric would work for painting please? Thinking of a mustard yellow to bring out the honey comb pattern as it's raised and might still show through. Thanks Kirsty

  • Rebecca Platt Rebecca Platt on Sep 19, 2019

    You mentioned two types of calcium carbonate. I didn't realize there are two types. Did you mean to say that? Great chair, BTW.

  • Ronee Ronee on Aug 27, 2020

    What tips or details can you share? Like how much is needed for a large upholstered easy chair with loose cushion. What is drying time, do items painted need more than one coat. Can I get calcium carbonate at any lumber yard or Home Depot? How much wax is needed after painting? Thank you. I’ve been wanting to do two chairs that have been sun bleached for some time.

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2 of 35 comments
  • Lou Lou on Sep 23, 2019

    I’m looking to do 71/2 ft sofa, about glow much of the ingredients will I need

  • SK on Elderberry SK on Elderberry on Sep 27, 2019

    Hello from SK on Elderberry

    A quart of good latex paint will cover two to three times.

    Make sure to keep the fabric damp and scrub the paint in. I scrub in a circular movement.

    Good Luck.