DIY Chalk Paint


How to make you very own chalk paint for half the cost of name brands

Chalk paint has become really popular over the past decade for many reasons. It works best for repurposing and painting furniture, it can be diluted with water to make a wash to show wood grains,  it easily washes off of your paint brushes so that they can be used multiple times, plus there is no need to prime or prep your pieces before painting. Need I say more?!

There are all sorts of wonderful reasons to use chalk paints other than just what it looks like. But, if you’ve ever gone shopping for it before, you will find that most brands carry a high price tag. This can veer DIYers like yourself in the other direction! That is why I love making my own!

Materials Needed

Plaster of Paris

Latex Paint  With a Flat Finish


Sealer/Wax Topcoat 

A container to mix in (empty plastic yogurt or sour cream containers work great!)

A paint stick or plastic spoon to stir.

The Recipe

  • 1 – 8 ounce (0.5 pint) can of paint (latex or acrylic)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons of Plaster of Paris
  • 2 tablespoons of  luke warm water

Mix the Plaster of Paris and water in a small dish or glass making sure it is stirred until smooth. It should resemble pancake batter. Next, you with dump this mixture straight into you container with the paint. Stir with a spoon or paint stick until the complete concoction is completely mixed together. If you want to make more than this batch makes, then just simply double or triple the measuring amounts for each material.

*Tip: I like to use white paint as my base color no matter what color I need. Once I have a batch of white chalk paint mixed together, I then add other colors separately. By doing it this way, I am able to use one batch for multiple projects and colors!

Time to Paint

Grab a bristle like this or foam brush and start painting! The painting process is just like any other. You don’t have to do anything special other than making sure your piece is clean and sanded if needed. Chalk paints are designed to be applied with a bristled paint brush, but don’t worry if you don’t have a designated chalk paint brush like the one listed. You can certainly use a regular brush, but the application of the chalk paint may not go on as consistently as it should.

Name Brand Vs. Homemade

I bought a  full container of plaster of paris for just over $8.00. It’s 4 pounds, and I used 2 1/2 tablespoon so according my conversions, it cost about $.15 for each batch for the Plaster of Paris. Add that to my $9.50 for an 32 ounce container of paint (Apple Barrel) that I found on sale at Walmart, the total comes to $8.75. In the past, I’ve spent over $15 plus shipping for a chalk paint that contained less paint than this homemade recipe! So, I can now have 8 ounces of paint for $2.52 vs the $15.00-$25.00 cans you find in any paint store or online.

Waxing over Chalk Paint

To wax or not to wax? That is a question I ask myself a lot! It isn’t required to wax over chalk paint. Your paint and furniture will look and do great without it (most of the time). Wax also has a durability issue. It only last so long before you have to re-wax it (a couple times a year). It isn’t permanent or even semi – permanent. But, it does give your furniture a soft and rich finish. So, posted a finishing wax that I use if I do decide to do so, but I am going to leave this debate up to you! 🙂


Waxing your furniture, signs, or anything else you painted is a form of sealing the paint, but like mentioned above, it doesn’t last forever. This is why I prefer to use this seal spray. It does require any fancy applicator brushes, and it is extremely affordable. The only downfall is that I can only find it in an aerosol can format.

Your Thoughts?

Let me know how your DIY Chalk Paint turned out for you! What did you use it on and what colors did you mix? Were you satisfied with the quality of this recipe? If so, please pin! 🙂


Happy DIYing,



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