Top Tips From Annie Sloan

May 1, 2013



I was able to visit one of my favorite stores today, Sea Rose Cottage in Bristol, RI. Nancy is the shop owner and Chalk Paint® extraordinaire who got me hooked on painting with Chalk Paint®:


I always find or learn something new when I visit her shop. Today I brought a friend who wants to paint an old, small, wooden detailed chest with the Chalk Paint® because she loves the paint colors and the idea of not having to prime and sand first. (I did learn today that is is now called ‘Chalk Paint®’ which is now a registered trademark. It is not called Annie Sloan Chalk Paint or ASCP anymore, it is Chalk Paint ®, or Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan.)

It is a good idea to visit your local Stockist and see the colors in person because it is a great way to decide on colors and technique on your next project. I am so glad we went to the store, because the Chalk Paint® color Arles my friend was looking at was much more golden than she thought:


She brought to the store a drawer to match and her wall color sample which is Ben Moore Storm AF-700. Storm is a gray with blue undertones, the same as the Chalk Paint color Paris Grey. Another good reason to visit the store is that we were able to look at the different color combinations and the Paris Grey and Cream looked fabulous together!  My friend ended up with the Cream, which is a beautiful soft yellow:


Annie suggests the combination of the Cream with the Paris Grey for a French look here.

At the store you can see sample finishes and decide on what technique and color combinations you might want to use. You can bring your fabric and paint swatches along –or even a drawer! And the best reason to visit is to get advice and tips from your local Stockist on your project. To find the closest retailer nearest you visit

My favorite take away today was my free Annie Sloan Tutorial (which you can only get by visiting the store):


It is step by step directions on some of the classic finishes such as Simple Vintage Look, Two Color Distressing, The Rustic ‘Chippy’ Look and A Smooth Modern Finish. It is nice to have directions in front of you as a reminder, plus it gives you ideas for other techniques to try. I also picked up an Application Techniques brochure with some of Annie Sloan’s ‘Top Tips’. Here are a couple of my favorites she wrote:

* Working With a Good Palette of Colors is Important, as is Being Able To Mix Them.

“I use a palette of ready mixed neutrals with stronger colors, working on the premise that you can lighten strong colors but can not make a light strong color. Our colors can be lightened with Old White or you can use Country Grey to give a color a little complexity. Waxes can change the color as well.”

* Wax On, Wax Off!

“I wax more or less everything I paint to get the right finish for my furniture and walls. I find it makes my projects strong and gives them a beautiful, workable finish. I recommend that you use a wax that is soft and can be easily be applied with a small brush. If you want to get the job done quickly and are feeling confident, you can use a larger brush. After adding a layer of clear wax, you can choose to apply a dark wax to change the color, or add paint to the clear wax to alter the finish.”



If you have not tried it yet, I encourage you to find a small paint project to try. The Chalk Paint® adheres to almost any surface, inside or out. How about in the garden- exterior walls, garden furniture (except teak), metal, concrete, matt plastic and even terracotta. Just leave it to harden over night and then wipe it down with a damp cloth before exposing it to rain. No need to wax. The colors are all beautiful, imagine them in your flower garden! This sign was painted with Chalk Paint®. So cool!!



A few more great tips and hints with the soft wax that I found are good reminders:

* When you apply the wax, ‘push’ it into your Chalk Paint for the best results. Think hand cream and apply it the same way! Remove excess wax with a clean cloth.

* When applying wax, less is more, so there is no need to apply wax too thickly. The wax will feel touch –dry immediately after you have applied it.

* If you want to achieve a really good shine, allow 24 hours before buffing wax.

To find the closest retailer nearest you visit You will be very pleased you visited the store. I sure was today! Have you tried any projects lately with Chalk Paint®?

If you need help decorating your home with color, contact me today.


  1. Kelly, It was so fun to catch up with you and to meet Cindy yesterday! I can’t wait to see the ‘after’ pictures of Cindy’s project. Thanks so much for your kind words~I’m so glad you enjoyed your visit!

  2. Thanks for the info, Kelly! I do love painting with Chalk Paint, and the issue of how to wax properly has come up in many blogs. Too much is too much! I have learned the hard way…

  3. I also have better luck using the Italian Wax Brush , rather than a cloth to apply wax. I’m really able to spread it thin, and have much more control than when I use a cloth. This is just a personal preference, but it’s what has worked for me.

  4. A little of this gilding wax goes a long way. Just apply the wax to the raised ornamentation on a newly painted piece of furniture or frame. Add banding to your piece by taping off sections or selecting areas of a panel to highlight. This wax is suitable to all types of surfaces including wood, plaster, glass and metal. Always add your French Gilding Wax as your last step after your Annie Sloan Waxes.

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