Monday, April 8, 2013

Trying Webster's Chalk Paint Powder

Webster's Chalk Paint Powder

Have you heard of Webster's Chalk Paint Powder?
I only learned of it recently and decided to buy some and
give it a try.  According to the company's literature that came
with my order, it was developed for "thrifty, frugal, do-it-
yourselfers" who want a "healthy all natural alternative 
to home made chalk recipes".  

Webster's Chalk Paint Powder by mail

Webster's powder costs $13.95 for enough powder to make 
a quart of chalk paint when mixed with your own latex
paint and some water. Shipping is $4.00. Although you do 
have to supply your own color, this product is still less
expensive than some of the other chalk paints on the market.
Webster's Chalk Paint Powder in bag

Another advantage of the powder is that you can make smaller
batches of chalk paint in whatever color of paint you need.
The company's website says that "months and months of 
research went into creating a product that could be added to
regular latex paint".  They suggest flat, semi-gloss, satin or
eggshell finishes but not high gloss. 
Chalk Paint

One of my least favorite pieces of furniture in my house
is an end table in the living room.  

My husband has had it for about 35 years.  
It is a sturdy solid wood piece that fits in that tight
area well. He says that he "paid good money for it"
and has been reluctant to let it go. 

I thought it might be a good candidate to try the chalk paint
powder on because it doesn't have a large surface area.
I could mix up a quarter of the bag of powder and a cup
of paint and see how far it would go on the piece.

I got permission to paint the table if I would leave the
burled wood on top alone.
burled wood

It is pretty wood on top and has been very durable.
In its 35 years it only has a tiny boo-boo in the surface. 

Another feature that I had all but forgotten about was a 
handy-dandy formica-topped beverage pull out shelf.


The instructions give you the exact amounts of water to powder

to mix together before you add the paint color for the amount

of chalk paint that you want to end up with in the end.

chalk paint powder


I thought that it would take two cups of paint to cover the table.

I like to add layers of colors so that when I sand the piece,

different layers emerge.  I selected two light color Valspar
sample paints that are 8 oz. ($3 each) from Lowe's.
Valspar color Churchill Hotel

Just to make sure that the 8oz. of paint was a cup that the chalk
paint recipe calls for, I marked a throw away cup with a line
of where one cup would come up to.

Sure enough, the contents of the sample jar of paint was one cup.

churchill hotel wheat

You add the powder and water mixture to the paint and stir.
how to make chalk paint

This is what the table looked like after one coat of the paint:
how to use chalk paint

chalk paint one coat

chalk paint one coat

 It is not unusual for dark pieces of furniture to need two
coats of chalk paint if you want the piece completely covered.

I was surprised at how little of the chalk paint was needed
for the first coat.  Can you see the level of where the paint
started in the solo cup and the level after the first coat?
a little chalk paint goes a long way

Because so little of the paint was gone out of the first color,
I decided not to mix up a batch of the second color. 
This was the darker color anyway and it turned out
lighter than I thought it would. 

I found out that it was easier to paint this small piece
by turning it at different angles to get all the surfaces.

After the second coat, almost all of the
dark wood was covered.
second coat of chalk paint


The second coat of paint used even less paint than the first one.
do you need two coats of chalk paint

After the second coat, I poured the left over "now chalk paint"
back into the original container of paint.  Enough was left for
future projects for sure.  I contacted the Webster Chalk Paint
Powder company via email to ask if there were any special
instructions for saving left over paint.  They responded
promptly that just to put in a container that could be sealed
and to re-stir the paint before using it again.
save leftover chalk paint

I had seen it recommended to use 100 grit sandpaper to
 distress chalk paint pieces so I purchased some .
what grit of sandpaper for chalk paint

On previous chalk painted pieces I had sanded, I used some
200 grit sandpaper that I had on hand.  It had taken some
 elbow grease to get a distressed look with the 200 grit.

The 100 grit, however, took more of the paint off than
I wanted even though I tried to not sand too hard.
Maybe 150 grit would be a happy medium for me.
how to sand chalk paint

I got the left over chalk paint back out and put a light coat
over some of the places where too much paint came off.
how to distress chalk paint

The chalk powder paint instructions state that if you want a
chalkboard effect, don't wax at this point but they recommend
waxing if the chalk paint is on furniture to seal the paint.

I did buy some Annie Sloan dark wax when I got a quart each
of AS "Old White" and "Old Ochre" chalk paint a while back.
Being the cheap person that I am, I have just used the less
expensive, locally available Johnson's Paste Wax and/or
 Minwax Finishing wax in the clear color to use with the dark wax.
dark wax and clear wax

First I rubbed (with a clean white cloth) and brushed
 (with a normal paint bristle brush...
I know there is an official wax brush but I have not
been able to bring myself to spend the money for it)
 a coat of clear wax all over the piece.
This intensifies the color of the chalk paint and helps to seal it.
use a brush for waxing chalk paint

Then, if you also want a coat of dark wax color on your piece,
you add it on top of the clear coat of wax.
Be prepared to add some more clear wax on top of the dark
wax to rub some of it off if it is darker than you want. 

The dark wax can be shockingly dark by itself.

Now a days, I mix clear wax and dark wax together
before putting it on a piece to "dilute" it some.
Just cream it together with a fork like mixing in butter.
mix clear and dark wax

The Webster folks caution not to use wax not intended
for painted pieces on their chalk paint.  I could not find on my
cheaper cans of clear wax whether they were OK for painted
pieces but I did find a blog post by Jennifer Rizzo 
where she uses paste wax on chalk pieces frequently.

After the wax has cured for about 24 hours, buff it down
with a clean white cloth.

The main purpose of painting the end table was to try the
Webster's Chalk Paint Powder (TM) and that was
successful. I thought the powder did well to turn regular
latex paint into chalk paint.  I would probably add a few more
 drops of water next time I mix some up to thin it a little.
using chalk paint

But, I still don't love this table.
how to use chalk paint

The chalk paint does help it, however, to blend into
it surroundings better and be less noticeable.

Before
green sofa

After
how to use chalk paint

The little pull out tray area on the table turned out
to be my favorite part on the painted piece.
white chalk paint with dark wax

white chalk paint

So, in comparing cost between getting the Webster's chalk paint
powder and say, Annie Sloan chalk paint, a quart of chalk
paint would be about $30 using the Webster's powder
($18 for powder with shipping and then $12 for four
8oz. sample latex paints) versus $40 for AS ($35 for a
quart and then about $5 shipping). 
Cost-wise, not a big difference in price. 

The bigger difference is that you could select 4 different colors
to mix the powder with and have a 8 oz. of each color. 
Based on how far the chalk paint went made with the Webster's
powder, it seems that a cup of paint would be enough for 
quite a bit larger piece than I used for this project. 

Although I have used both plaster of paris and wall texture
 powder to mix with paint to make a chalk-like paint with
good results, both have cautions about their use
 (wash plaster off your skin if it gets on there
and don't breathe in excess sanding dust from wall texture).
The Webster literature says that their product is "all
natural" and safer than cheaper home made chalk recipes.

So, I probably will buy more Annie Sloan chalk paint
(click on highlighted words to see a dresser and a chest
done in AS  "Old White" and "Old Ochre")
 and I probably will make my own chalk
paint with wall texture powder again (here's a screen
and an armoire done in layered craft paint colors and
texture powder) and I will be using the rest of the
Webster's Chalk Paint Powder (TM) to make three more
cups of chalk paint for future projects...I like them all.

(I purchased the chalk paint powder myself, did not receive any compensation for
doing this post on Webster's powder and have no affliliation with the company.)

I am sharing this post at
Sunday Showcase @ Under The Table and Dreaming
Mod Mix Mondat @ Mod Vintage Life
Metamorphosis Monday @ Betweeen Naps On The Porch
Knick of Time Tuesday @ Knick of Time blog
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday @ Coastal Charm
Inspire Me Tuesday @ A Stroll Thru Life
Open House Party @ No Minimalist Here
Furniture Feature Friday Party @ Miss Mustard Seed

23 comments:

cmoh said...

Great post! Very useful and your instructions and process are so clear. I'm glad you didn't mess with the burl on top, that is a gorgious top, the overall effect makes it stand out more.

Thnks for sharing
Hugs
The Glitter Tart

Heather said...

I'm in the middle of a homemade chalk paint project, and can I just say that I hate it? If I had never used ASCP/Maison Blanche/Cece Caldwell, I would probably be fine with it, but it is SO not the same. I've been putting off finishing this coffee table for 2 months now because I'm dreading it. Never again! It looks like this powder works better than the plaster of paris disaster I found on Pinterest, though :)

Gail said...

I think your table turned out beautiful and your bookcase on the left seems to highlight it even more. I've been thinking about painting an old dresser in chalk paint and I'm leaning towards Annie Sloan's. Although it still seems too expensive to me. I don't like mixing stuff on my own. I can never duplicate the results if I need more. Still haven't gotten my nerve up to do this project, but every time I read about someone else doing it, I get excited all over again!

janet said...

I'm confused at how adding anything to LATEX makes a healthy more natural alternative ? Isn't it still latex paint?

Janet xox
The Empty Nest

NanaDiana said...

That was a great review of the product. I like how it came out and it is nice to know someone has really put it to the test. I love how your little table came out. I hope the hubby likes it painted! xo Diana

Linda@Coastal Charm said...

I do paint a lot for my business...so it looks like I need to try this stuff. Thank you for sharing your little table at my NIFTY THRIFTY TUESDAY PARTY.

Blessings,
Linda

Melissa Skidmore said...

I too have tried the Websters. I was pleased with it. Your table turned out great! Life to the full! Melissa @ DaisyMaeBelle

Wanda Baarman said...

Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I have used AS chalk paint on several occasions but have not tried the powder. Good to know how they both perform and compare. Oh, and I like your little table. I love the pull out tray and I think it looks lovely painted. Sometimes we just get it in our head that we are sick of something and can't see it in any other light. I just dropped off a wing back chair at Goodwill that I was sick to death of so I understand but it is a pretty table. Visiting from Nifty Thrifty Tues. Have a great week.

Atta Girl Amy said...

I hadn't heard of chalk paint powder, so I'm glad to have found your post.

I've used plaster of paris and unsanded grout to make my own chalk paint, and of course, I've used the real thing and milk paint.

From your post, I'm not sure that there's much of a cost benefit to using the powder versus buying Annie Sloan. That is, unless you can find the powder locally.

Alicia said...

Have you tried unsanded grout added to regular paint? 1 tbs of powder to one cup paint. I bought a small tub of the grout for a$5 and it'll probably last forever, worked great too. I used it on to redo my kitchen cabinets.

Shirley@Housepitality Designs said...

The table turned out beautiful...I am so glad that you kept the burled wood top as it is gorgeous...thanks for presenting this option of chalk paint...I have just used ASCP with great results. Years and years ago, I bought cabinet and they used the powdered chalk paint as it was the only way it came..

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Hi Gayle, I just saw this powder being sold at the Fancy Flea and it is great to hear your review. I was wondering if the ingredients are listed. Thanks for linking to the Open House party.
xx,
Sherry

Debbiedoo's said...

Now that turned out gorgeous! I never heard of that stuff, but will certainly have to try it sometime!~ What a great looking piece.

Roseanna said...

Thanks for all the useful info...I can't believe that they have the nerve to charge $13.95 plus $4.00 shipping for essentially a $1 worth(maybe) of product. If this was to be a cost effective alternative to ASP, it failed. I will stick with ASP!

Mary Vitullo said...

Hi - Thanks for your review. I've been using non-sanded grout and making my own chalk paint for quite a while. The mixing insructions are exactly identical to that for the non-sanded grout and therefore makes me wonder if they are packaging the identical product. Are the ingredients listed. I purchased a 10 lb. box of non-sanded grout for about $12.00 at a local home improvement store. Just wondering.

Mary@Orphans With MakeUp

srpprcrftr said...

You did such a great job of showing how things worked, comparing mixing it, the effectiveness and the cost, excellent tutorial much appreciated.
I have a question that I need an answer to: I bought a 4.85 lb box of unsanded grout for $1 at the thrift store, does the unsanded grout go bad or lose it's effectiveness after a time? I have no idea how long it had been open but thought I didn't have much to lose by trying it.
I got some sample jars of the Valspar reject paints at Lowe's to try for $1.00 so that was a good deal also. Was lucky to find colors I liked. Guess I answered my own ?if it came out ok huh? duh.
I'll just keep using it til I feel like it's not working right. I had to keep the cost down so thought trying this would be worth it and it has been. When I have a project now I go to the reject paint spot at Lowe's. I've gotten some nice spray paint in their brand also.

Anne said...

I love furniture that has a painted base and a wood top! You did such a fabulous job and it definitely looks better than before.

Thanks for the tips! I've been trying chalk paint made from latex and baking soda, it works really well!!

Have a great weekend :)

pinkvanillarose said...

Awesome post! Thanx for the very clear info and the pics. I love, love, LOVE the Valspar and other small trial containers of paint! They've kept me from having so many cans of paint colors I may never use again!

bambi said...

I wonder if the Webster's Chalk Powder is Calcium Carbonate. I love and use ASCP but I did once (sucessfully) make my own chalk paint using powdered Calcium Carbonate which I purchased at a health food store in the vitamin dept. I have read that it can be purchased pretty inexpensively in larger quantities from big box stores but haven't really tried to find it beyond looking at my local Home Depot. It might be more easily found online (perhaps Amazon). You could probably save some more bucks by looking into that.

Eliesa Prettelt said...

I love how your table turned out - it does make it blend into the room better now. And I love the burled top, so I'm glad you left it. Since I only just tried my very first chalk paint this week, I was glad to find your post about it - it feels like I'm finally know what everyone has been talking about. I'm going to work on my aging technique, so I'm glad you mentioned with grit of sandpaper you used. Perfect timing!

Shelia said...

Oh, how pretty your table is! I love that you left that pretty burled wooden top too. I have to confess, I've never used chalk paint. I hear folks say it's so easy! Thank you for showing us just how to use it.
I also wanted to thank you for popping in to Cindy's blog and touring my home. I was so honored Cindy asked me.
be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Little Miss Maggie said...

I think the table turned out great. I love natural tops with painted bases. You did a great job and thanks for telling us about this new product.

Nicole Goodwin said...

Thank you very much for blogging about our product. We will be happy to answer any questions or concerns any of your followers may have. Please contact us anytime at info@websterschalkpaintpowder.com One follower commented that latex paint itself is not healthy because it still has latex in it. This statement is incorrect. Latex paint has become a generic term and there is no longer latex in paint. Most are 100% acrylic based. Anything else we can clear up for you? We'd be more than happy to.

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