In case you don’t know, I work for my local Chalk Paint® stockist Total Bliss. I spend Tuesdays and Thursdays interacting with our customers and helping them with Chalk Paint®. I love it! My 5 hours a day there feel like 5 minutes….good problem to have huh?
It seems lately that much of our dialogue has been about Brush Strokes and Chalk Paint®.
Yes, you will definitely have brush strokes if you use Chalk Paint®!
Is that bad or good?
It’s a good thing and even and awesome thing most of the time. Annie created Chalk Paint® as a decorative paint primarily for furniture. She created it to do lots of different things, and many of those things are based on the texture that you can create with the paint. You create that texture primarily using a natural bristle brush. If you are using the Dark Wax you can achieve a much better look with it by having brush strokes, especially when they are in different directions and length.
Can you see how the Dark Wax sits in the strokes here?
On this piece I only used the Dark Wax in small areas, so my strokes give it texture only where I want and the other areas the strokes are really not noticeable at all unless you really look closely.
There are ways to lessen the appearance of strokes…
First of all the lighter the pigment of color, the more brush strokes the color seems to show.
1. You can control the paint and lessen the appearance of strokes by using some water to thin your paint. I always like to keep a spray bottle of water by my side to either mist my brush or the actual work surface. The paint drys so fast that if you brush through drying paint, you disturb it and create “texture”. Spritz that spot with some water and “paint it out”.
2. You can also be more “anal” about your strokes. Painting in one direction with longer strokes helps.
3. You can also vary the tools you are using to apply the paint with. I have found that using a flat brush that is either all synthetic bristles or a blend of natural and synthetic bristles produces a much smoother look. Foam brushes and rollers also are great ways to apply the paint for a smoother look.
4. You can also perform a light sanding between coats, or after your final coat to smooth out your surface.
I generally use 150 or 220 grit sandpaper…but you can even go up into the super fine grits like 600 to really smooth our your surface. Yes, this take extra time…but if that is the look you want then a few extra minutes to do this really is not that big of a deal.
I’ve had people come into the shop and be very frustrated because their pieces have brush strokes. They are under the impression that the furniture we paint in the store is “perfect”. I usually walk them around and show them our pieces and our brush strokes. It is funny when they realized that they are really just being hyper focused on their piece, and when they step back and look at the piece is really is beautiful and perfect.
Don’t hyper focus on the strokes!
That being said, if you are extremely OCD and just can’t handle it….then maybe Chalk Paint® is not the right paint. There are lots of other paints and products out there. Choose the one that is right for you and your desired look!