Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Q&A

While I’m on the topic of Annie Sloan paint products, here is the Q&A that I promised.  I hope I’m not wearing some of you out with this painting furniture topic.  I just always like to supply my readers with as much info as I can.

First, though, let me thank my panel of experts who so graciously answered all of my questions:

image image
Katie from Wildwood Creek

image image
Melynda from Nod to the Past

image image
Anneke from This, That and Life

image imageimage
Cassie from Primitive and Proper – green is painted with CeCe Caldwell Paints

Wendi from Thelma and Louize

And, a reader – Ann Wilson.

Those ladies (above) have all done multiple pieces using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) and know what they are talking about!  Thank you for sharing your knowledge with a newbie.  Below is Q&A style information on the ASCP process that I got from them.  Enjoy.

I also read posts from Miss Mustard Seed and Perfectly Imperfect for further information.  What can I say?  I’m an information junkie.

When you use ASCP, do you prime or sand?  Is it difficult to cover a dark wood that has a poly on it?
No priming or sanding needed on any piece.  It will work on just about anything – mdf, plywood, metal…  On a side note, I have heard of people needing to use primer, like Kilz, if something is ‘bleeding’ through. This hasn’t happened to me yet.

How many coats does it take?
It depends on what color of chalk paint you’re using. I’ve had most go on smooth in one coat, but Olde White, for example, has always come out showing lines and 2-3 coats.  It also depends on the look you’re going for.  ASCP actually looks nice on furniture with sealers like poly versus raw wood.

I heard waxing is difficult?  Is it?
There was a small learning curve for me when I first used it.  Waxing can be difficult, and while I don’t do it much anymore, you can seal it with polyurethane, polcrylic, or spray lacquer.

See this video about waxing.

Do small areas at a time.  If you find u have too much in an area, apply some mineral spirits lightly and it will smooth the area out.

How soon after painting can you wax?
You can wax as soon as the paint is dry to the touch, and it dries very quickly!


ASCP-002-3 ASCP-010-2

Can I put a second coat of wax on right away?
You can add a second coat of wax shortly after the first, just make sure it does not feel tacky.  In other words, let the first coat dry out a bit first.

How long do you wait after waxing, before buffing?
You can buff when the piece is no longer tacky.  I usually wait 2 to 4 hours to buff.  You can wait overnight.

When can I sit things on the piece?
It does take a while for the wax to cure. You run the danger of scratching it if you sit on it too soon, as the wax might still be soft. Not sure that it takes three weeks though, but to be on the safe side that would probably be good.

At least a few days, but up to three weeks to be safe.

How do you clean the wax off of your brush?
Cooking oil, then soapy water.

How do you get paint and wax off of the glass?
Just like with your brushes.  If you didn’t tape it off, then put cooking oil on first (without getting it on the paint).  Soapy water on after that.  Water to rinse.  Wipe dry.  Gets it all off.

General Tips
- I keep a little bowl of water and dab my brush in it to keep the paint smooth and ez to roll on and into those corners, etc.

- If you have an area that u find the paint is showing “oranging! Rusty colors”, stop trying to paint over it and you need to seal the furniture with a sealer. Before the paint color will look right. I used to keep trying to paint again, and it just looked like a grease spot every time on that part.

- If you happen to use white paint, be sure to buff with a white cloth.  Trust me on this one.  I used colored rags on other colors of paint with no problem.  Just be sure to use a white cloth on white paint.

- I purchased a small waxing buffer machine and use it on items I want to be shinier. I love it! Annie herself told me if I wanted that look to apply wax, wait one day, and buff it with a machine and it would shine and she was right!

- Adding clear wax over dark wax helps get off too much dark wax ore to lighten it.  You can do this up to a couple of days after.

- Be sure to buff with a clean cloth.

- For a very light version of the dark stain, try clear first and then mix a bit of dark with the clear for a second coat.

- You can mix the wax with any color of paint or wax that you want for a different look.

- Don’t hesitate to add water if the paint seems thick or you need to make it stretch further.

- If the wax is tacky for over a few hours, try buffing again.  Buff hard!  STILL tacky – try a very very very light wipe with a cloth damp with mineral spirits.

Check out yesterday’s post for additional tips.

imageimage image

Note, Cassie at Primitive and Proper now makes her own chalk paint mixing plaster of paris in with latex paint.  You can also mix paint with calcium carbonate or unsanded grout.

Do you have any tips to add?  Have you made your own?  What’d you use?  How did it turn out?  I’d love to hear more about your experience with chalk paint, especially ASCP.


P.S.  Sweet Ashley at Attempts at Domestication (entry 5) won the Panyl giveaway!  Congrats!


  1. Kristy I’ve just loved following along with this makeover you did with ASCP! Thanks for asking so many great questions ~ what a nice surprise to see my name with so many other talented gals! I love using all kinds of paint, but using ASCP has been so great when I need to work in smaller spaces and not have to worry about overspray. I’ve also used latex with floetrol to brush on with no lines. I definitely think ASCP is worth the money, but yes, definitely start with a little side table or something! ;-) Thanks again ~ you did a great job on the hutch!

  2. Thanks for the shout out! I’ve picked up some additional tips from your informative series on ASCP. Love your hutch makeover!

  3. Yay!! Thanks for doing the giveaway! :)

  4. Hi Kristy, I make my own chalk paint from unsanded grout and have had great success infact Im getting ready to undertake two massive chalk paint projects a HUGE hutch and a huge armoire,will keep you posted on the results:)

  5. thank you SO much for all the information and for being so thorough and for including me! :)

  6. Invaluable info Kristy. Thank you! I have only used the AS paint once…….the white and it took more than I was anticipating. It was a small ladies antique mirror dresser. I am still working on it because I plan to put another color on it also. And I just got her waxes. Anxious to get going. Have a wonderful weekend.

  7. Awesome tips! I haven’t been brave enough to try it yet, but you can guarantee I’ll be rereading these tips when the time comes!

  8. Great tips and a lot of info! I’ve also found on glass, I don’t even bother taping anymore. It’s much easier and faster to paint over the glass or mirror and use a razor blade to slide the paint off, it takes seconds with the ASCP. Taping takes me forever and makes me crazy!!

  9. Saw your pieces and read your tips.
    I think you are the one to help me.
    I just painted Annie Sloan country grey over a pergo floor.
    Love the color but I feel the paint covered too much and I probably should have just used a wash.
    I have not put down the laquer yet.
    Do you have any suggestions so that the floor looks more like a wash?

    Loved you pieces and your make sense tips!!!!

    • Oh goodness, once the paint is on and dried, there isn’t much you can do besides scraping it off… I don’t think you can make it look like a wash, but I haven’t done a floor before – you may try asking some of the experts that are named in this post. Good luck!

  10. Greetings, I am excited to read about this chalk paint. I have two matching dressers that are being used in Master Bath as counter and storage for two matching vessel sinks. I think the previous owner wanted an antique-ie look. However, the dressers are scratched and ugly. This chalk paint sounds like it might be the answer but I am clueless. Can someone point me to a site or explain to me exactly what I might need to do. They are both very dark high-gloss probably polyurethaned old dressers.

    Thanks for any information.

    • If you google it, there are many sites out there that talk about chalk paint, one of which is Primitive and Proper which I link to in this post. However, there is nothing to it – no prep. Just paint it, unless there are bumps you prefer to sand down first. Then, wax it, as this post talks about. You’ll want to buy chalk paint, wax (to seal it), and a brush. That easy! I hope that helps.

  11. Hi there! I just found your blog after doing a search about buffing AS wax. I am painting my kitchen cabinets with Duck Egg on the lowers and Old White on the uppers, and I think I am in over my head! This is essentially my first ASCP project, though I did take a class at a local stockist. I’ve asked her tons of questions, but I am just hating the wax (and I’m embarrassed to tell her that). My wax brush is shedding like crazy (it’s new), and it seems like not much is happening when I try to buff. I’m using an old T-shirt, and I feel like it just makes the Old White look dirty and not shiny. So, I am very curious about the buffing machine you use, and also what you do when you don’t use wax. I just think there has to be a better way! (I hope!). Thanks for any help you can give. :)

    • Hi Jenny. What a big project! I actually didn’t use a buffing machine but one of the experts that answered my questions did. I just used new buffing cloths made for cars. I put my body weight into it and rubbed hard! That may be the trick to it. I had to get the excess wax off and then it started to shine. It did get pretty glossy for me. But, I do think wax can be sort of tricky. But, remember more wax also gets extra wax off. I’d guess that most buffing machines (much like a sander, but a buffer) would work, though. Otherwise, I use a clear poly to finish things. I hope that helps! Good luck!

      • Thanks, Kristy! I remembered that my husband used to have a buffer for his car (which he never even opened – the buffer, that is, not the car – ha), so I had him dig it out of the garage, and it’s a 6″ Random Orbital Polisher – perfect! So, I tried that out tonight on a couple of shelves I had already attempted to buff, and it gave them a higher gloss shine (which I like). I still need to try it on a piece that I haven’t buffed at all, though. I think I will also go get some Polycrylic and try it out on an extra cabinet door. I really like the color of the Old White after painting it, and I’m not sure if I want the color to deepen like I know it will with the clear wax. Anyway, I appreciate your help!

    • Jenny I feel the same about the wax. I have did my kitchen table for my first ASCP project and just have had a horrible time with the wax – the dark wax. My table was painted w/ Arles and after I did a clear wax coat, I decided it needed a little something, like maybe dark wax to add some dimension. After the first dark wax coat, it looked bad, streaks, you could see the sections I did, and where I tried to add a little more, it took the existing off. I guess I should have worked in a team, but have since spoke to my local stockist several times and just can’t figure it out. I then had to use a lot of clear wax to go over it to take off the dark wax. Then, I was advised to mix some Mineral Spirits w/ the dark wax to make a glaze since I was working alone. It just seems inconsistent on the table. One leaf will look great and the next horrible. Argg! I had a line of projects to do, but not convinced I have the time or resources to do anything else.

  12. I have a small rustic furniture store and also do restorations on some antiques pieces. I finish all my pieces after they are built; we use a lot of old doors and windows and recycled wood. I mostly use stain for the finish but I do a lot of painted pieces. After the paint or stain is totally dry, I apply a coat of wax (furniture wax that I order from Mexico City), a lot cheaper). I let the wax sit for a few hours, sometimes overnight and the easiest way to remove the wax and
    acquire that sheen (high luster) is with a buffing brush on an electric drill. I buy the brushes from Minwax, Van Dykes Restorers or any other restoration store. I use the biggest brush I can find; it makes the job easier and faster but it is hard work. (I have nice arms, LOL). I remove all the wax in order to get a high sheen. The finished product is beautiful.

  13. I have never used ASCP but am thinking about trying a few projects to try and get the hang of things. My question is how does ASCP hold up on stair treads. I have stained stair treads that are 25 years old. They are stained in a walnut finish. We just put in new Brazilian Cherry floors upstairs and down. The walnut treads in between look pretty bad. The cost to completely redo the stairs with new treads will be several thousand dollars. I thought it might be worth a try to paint them with Annie Sloan, but I don’t want to go to the trouble if it’s not going to stand up under light foot traffic. Thanks for any advice you can offer.

    • Great question! I’ve seen a lot of painted stairs out there, but I’ve never had the opportunity to try it myself. My guess would be that it would hold up pretty well IF you let the wax cure for a few weeks before walking on them. Is that possible? Of course I can’t promise, but if it was my house, I’d try it. :)

      • Our master bedroom is downstairs so we could probably manage to stay downstairs if we planned ahead. I’m going to order the ASCP starter kit and try out a couple smaller projects, then decide about the stairs. I’m also tempted to try painting my kitchen cabinets. They are stained with a mahogany gel stain right now and I want to go with something lighter to brighten up the kitchen. Any hints would be greatly appreciated. I’ll let you know how the painting goes. Now for the hard part – deciding which colors to purchase!

  14. Sweet blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem
    to get there! Cheers

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>