With all this warm weather comes outdoor adventures and fun in the sun!
If you’ve recently pulled your patio furniture from hibernation and it’s looking a little worn and tired, listen up. I have just the thing for you DIY’ers that will liven things up…
Brighten up your outdoor furniture with Chalk/Mineral Paint!
That’s right… the paint we all love and find so easy to use works beautifully on interior AND exterior surfaces.
Brand-name or HMC-Paints adhere to all different types of surfaces. Metal, plastic, wood, cane, wicker, even brick and concrete.
Annie Sloan has painted the outside of her Oxford shop with her amazing Chalk Paint. And check out this exterior wall painted with CeCe Caldwell’s Chalk&Clay Paint at Vintage Home in lovable Boulder City Nevada.
If Chalk/Mineral Paint can look amazing and withstand the outdoor elements of the intense desert heat, it can transform your patio furniture into something amazing too.
I tested this theory on a sad looking cane love-seat that has seen better days.
It was re-styled and refreshed using Homemade Chalk/Mineral Paint (Plaster of Paris Recipe) in “Island Coral”.
The paint color was actually nameless because it was a $3 mistint I purchased at HomeDepot…. but IF it had had a name… I’m sure it would have been called ‘Island Coral”.
This was the 2nd piece I’ve sprayed with Homemade ChalkyPaint and once again I really like the results.
To protect this piece from the outdoor elements, I sealed it with Varathane’s Water Based Diamond Outdoor Wood Finish in Satin. The topcoat (x3) was also sprayed on with my spray-gun.
With the proper cushions, this patio love seat is sure to bring smiles.
Have you ever used Chalk Mineral Paints for outdoor furniture or exterior purposes? I’d love to hear how it turned out for you!
Enjoy you day,
Pat Sloan says
The sealer that you use will that turn white Rust-Oleum chalk paint yellow over time? Is this the sealer you use ? Rust-Oleum Varathane 250251 1-Pint Classic Clear Water Based Outdoor Spar Urethane, Satin Finish. I’m having a hard time to find an outdoor sealer for my porch signs that won’t yellow white paint. There’s so many different suggestions out there not sure what would really work.
Hi, have you heard of a gazebo being painted in chalk paint. Thanks. What is a poly sealer?
I haven’t heard of a gazebo being painted in chalk paint but I’m sure it can be done. 🙂 And a poly sealer is a waterbased polycrylic clear topcoat that can be applied to painted or stained surfaces to protect.
If I use exterior paint to make my own chalk paint would I still need to see it with poly?
Whenever I use a chalk/mineral paint (diy or brand name) I do seal it because chalky paints are very porous in nature and tend to pick up oils and dirt quite easily… so I think its a good idea regardless of what type of indoor/outdoor paint you use. 🙂
I know this is a stupid question but I don’t want to make a mistake. I am painting a table for use outdoors, Do I apply the wax before using a poly sealer or no wax just poly sealer. this is my first time chalk painting. Thanks!
Hi Roxanne! No wax, just an outdoor poly sealer is more than enough. Hope this helps. 🙂
I have a vintage metal wagon frame that I want to put wood on and make it look like it was the original. I’m looking at using milk paint – never used it before. It would be outside 24-7/365. The colors I was looking at is Drift wood and Snow white? What are your thoughts about this? Thanks for your help. Sharon
Milk paint sinks into raw unfinished wood, so I think that’s a great choice. The colors sound great too. 🙂
michelle c says
Hi, I have painted a lot of things with chalk paint and has always been great. (I make my own chalk paint) I have never painted concrete. I would like to paint my concrete carport instead of stain it because there is so much prepping involved in the staining process.(lol) It does get water and and sun on it from time to time. If I chalk paint it , what seal product should I use? I know not to use the A.S. kind of lacquer b/c it is only for indoor. Should I just use an outdoor concrete sealer? Thank you bunches!!
Hmmmm, I’m not sure Michelle. I’ve never chalk painted concrete. My friend Josi in Boulder City NV painted her entire store wall in chalk paint. I’m not sure if this wall is stucco, brick or concrete (you can see a pic here) but it is porous like concrete and out in the elements. It was not sealed. Here’s a wikiHow article on painting concrete that may give you a few tips or ideas. Good luck.
Hi did my concrete steps just sealed them with clear roof seal
Do you need to use primer first on furniture like ratan?
Hi Trudi! No primer required on ratan if you’re are using Chalk or Mineral Paint.
Have you ever tried chalk painting a wooden floor? My kitchen floor is wood and no longer is good shape. I’m wondering what your thoughts are on painting it with Chalk paint. I’m thinking it might turn out pretty awesome and since we don’t wear shoes in the house I imagine it would wear pretty well. Just not sure since washing the floor might be an issue. Any insight or thoughts?
Hi there Sabine! No, I’ve never chalk painted a floor but I really do like the look of painted floors! Because chalk paints are porous and readily pick up dirt and oils, I would suggest sealing it for durability… even if you don’t plan on wearing shoes. Annie Sloan has a durable Lacquer for this purpose (works on floors) that can easily be applied with a sponge roller.
We have just finished building our new home. Unfortunately we haven’t added a porch on yet. I have a metal front door that’s white. I would love to chalk paint it. I’m not sure if I can ? If it’s ok do do what steps to I need to take? Thanks for any advice you can give me.
Gillian Common says
I have just chalk painted some corduroy cushions for outdoor use on a covered veranda. The look great but are a little crunchy! Should I wax to make them softer or is that not recommended for outdoor use. The will be protected from the elements most of the time. Thank you so much!
If they are protected from the elements, waxing is a good way to protect and seal your work Gillian.
Trisha Hildebrand says
I would like to chalk paint my exterior door, which is covered. Since wax isn’t a recommended, what do you recommend for antiquing instead of the dark wax?
Glaze over paint gives a beautiful antique look Trisha.
Robert Dent says
There are so many projects I could use this for, but I think the first one would be the chair rail for my daughter’s bedroom.
What type of sprayer do you use? I want to paint some Adirondack chairs that I’ve had made!
Hi Erin! I’ve been using this Husky HVLP Paint Gun for almost 3 years now.
Do you have to mix or dilute the Chaulk paint before putting in the spray gun? I was going to paint 6 dinning table chairs. This might make it easier. Also do it get runs like when using spray canned paints?
It depends on your spray gun and the paint April. Some chalk paints may need to be slightly thinned with water for best results. And yes, if thinned too much, runs can occur. The best way to get good results is to practice shoot on cardboard before spray painting your furniture. Have fun!
HI THERE HAVE YOU EVER USED “POLYVINE WAX FINISH DEAD FLAT POLYACRYLIC COATING ON YOUR CHALK PAINTED FURNITURE .. WONDERING IF IT IS SUPERIOR TO MINWAX? I CAN ONLY FIND IT ON LINE, NOT STOCKED HERE IN BOCA RATON FL.ANYWHERE
20 BUCKS PLUS SHIPPING A QUART.ALSO WONDERING IS IT BETTER TO THIN WATER BASED COATING OR LEAVE AS IS IF ITS HUMID LIKE IT IS HERE? I WAS FROM THE GTA( A FEW YRS BACK ) AND KNOW IT CAN GET HUMID THERE AS WELL SO JUST WONDERING FROM YOUR EXPERIENCE 🙂
I’ve never tried this product Jane. In regards to thinning water based topcoats, I don’t. Best protection will come from the manufactures recommended coats used at full strength (unless otherwise indicated on label). As for humidity, GTA can be pretty bad in the summer. But as you know – Florida’s summer heat wins hands down! LOVE Florida! But the few times I was down there in the summer, it felt like a was walking around with a hot wet blanket on me…lol. 😉
Where can I purchase the Varathane Diamond sealer that you have recommended. Our Home Depot never heard of it. I spent alot of time on several projects and want to seal them properly. Thank You
Hi Kim. If you’re unable to find the Varathane Diamond – any Varathane or Minwax Poly product will seal and protect nicely. Both brands come in various sheens and indoor or outdoor protection.
I am thinking about chalk painting my small breakfast room table and moving it outside under my covered patio. Would this type furniture hold up outside with chalk pain on it? It’s solid wood.
For outdoor furniture, I like to use an outdoor polyurethane to seal the DIY Chalkpaint for added protection. Holds up nicely Rhonda!
Nancy A Hepper says
No wax, just the polurethane finish after the chalkpaint?
Correct. No wax. Wax is not the best topcoat to hold up in outdoor elements. Plus it requires re=application down the road. An outdoor poly is best in my experience.
I have a question that I don’t seem to figure out on my own. I want to paint an old bicycle with chalk paint. Is it possible to paint it using chalk paint then going over it with dark wax, and then going over it once more with a glossy varnish spray? Would that work out or wouldn’t the varnish (acrylic) stick to the wax?
It’s difficult (if not almost impossible) to get topcoats to adhere to wax ML. It’s kind of like the oil and water scenario. I might try antiquing with a dark glaze and then applying a gloss finish.
Wow! My prayers are answered. I have a love/hate relationship with painting. I don’t like the messy work stages, but I stumbled across your site!! Watch out, hubby, I may end up painting you, too. I have a huge hutch in my happy jewelry making studio that I store my beads, etc.
Can’t wait for the morning to check out the colors. O, I’m a happy beaded. Thank you so much.
Country Lady Jewelry
What color is hubby going to be? lol 😉 Love your enthusiasm Nancy… have fun with your projects!
I was just reading your blog and had a couple questions for you. I had purchased a big, nice, farm style table at a garage sale and I am in the process of refinishing it for our patio table. I just finished sanding the top and bottom and staining it dark. The next step is to buy some chalk paint and paint the legs. Now, my question is what would be the best outdoor sealer to put over both the stain and chalk paint to protect it from the elements and so it doesn’t chip and flake from the sun over time? On other project I have used a varathane oil based sealer for outdoor wooden furniture and was not sure if that would work or if I should do a water based top coat that you have mentioned previously. Help! 🙂
Varathane sells a marvelous oil and water based sealer for outdoor use. Whichever you prefer working with will work nicely but if you plan on using a white/light color paint, keep in mind oil tends to yellow over time. And if it’s in the sun/heat, the yellowing process can sometimes happen more quickly. Other brands like Minwax etc also have great outdoor polys. Sounds like a great project Breanne!
I’m planing on painting 2 pallets with chalk paint… I’m putting them together and topping them for a tequila bar… It will be used outside, do I need to do anything else other then painting to the pallets??? Thank You…
Fun Cheryl! If this were my tequila bar that would be exposed to the elements and get a ton of action, 😉 I would seal with an outdoor polyurethane. If you like the weathered look and don’t mind re-painting a few years down the road, then you can leave it unprotected.
Your information about chalk paint has been so helpful to me. Thanks so much for imparting all your information and experience.
I have some leftover interior paint I plan to make into a DIY chalk paint. My question is whether you think I could use it on the exterior doors of my potting shed if I seal it with an outdoor poly. Or should I buy an exterior paint and make my DIY chalk paint out of that?
Thanks in advance for your advice!
Glad you’ve found the info helpful. 🙂 If you use the leftover interior paint with a DIY recipe and seal your door with a few coats of outdoor poly, it should be just fine Pam.
Oh, good! I’ll let you know how it turns out (and how it holds up).
Kathy Marzan says
Aloha, I just finished painting a picnic table for my patio, using CeCe Caldwels paints. The patio is covered, however it is partially open to the sun and rain. I sealed it 4 times with the Verethane outdoor waterbased sealer. The paint is also blisters in the morning. Last night it got drizzled on by rain and now there are water spots all over the table. I am frustrated because I really took my time to be sure to seal it well. Any suggestions?
Yikes… how frustrating after all that work! Kathy, did you wait the recommended cure time before placing it outdoors? The only thing that I can think of is that maybe the 4 coats of Varathane were not 100% cured?
Just used your plaster of Paris recipe on outdoor metal chairs. It looks great but feels rough. Will sealing it make it feel smoother or do I need to do something else?
If it feels rough Sue, a light sanding before you seal should do the trick.
Hello!! Just received our NOW brand calcium carbonate and will be ready to start tackling projects, soon. Our question is: have you oranyone here ever painted an exterior front door w Chalk paint? Our front door is under a porch roof, but gets hot summer sun for a good part of the day. Think it will hold up?
I’ve never painted a door in diy or brand name Chalk Paint but if sealed correctly, I’m sure it will hold up just fine. As shared in the post above, Josi from Vintage Home in Boulder City NV painted her entire outside wall in chalk paints. This wall has held up under the smoldering hot Nevada sun for the last few years and still looks amazing!
I wanted to ask cause I’m new at this do you have certain measurement you normally mix when making it with plaster of Paris and latex paint and water
Chalk Paint Recipes
Marie Phillips says
When you state Chalk Paint/mineral spirits, is this a different paint from regular chalk paint?
Like your website, I am getting into chalk painting & am interested in doing some outdoor projects, just read where you can use for that.
Brand name and homemade chalk paints are often made from different ‘ingredients’ but yes, Chalk/Mineral Paint is a chalky paint Marie! 🙂
Steve Weiser says
I am a carpenter(retired gent) and I have to find projects to do or I’ll lose my mind! I just discovered ASCP and I also found a great wrought iron/wood bench that needs a little TLC. This bench will be outside all year and exposed to all that NYC winters can throw at it. What would you suggest,Id like it to hold up for a least a few years without a re-do.
Did I forget to mention how happy I am to have found you’re website as well?
Hoping to hear from you soon,
I know all about NYC winters Steve. I’m just north of you in the GTA so we give you guys a run for your money when it comes to bad weather! 🙂 If it were my bench, I would prep/sand any rusted wrought iron or glossy surfaces included the wood (I know ASCP says NO sanding required, but I like to create some tooth for shiny/glossy surfaces..especially if it’s going to be in the extreme outdoor elements!) and then paint and seal with an outdoor poly.
Sarah Jarvis says
Your old wicker lounge looked exactly like my very first attempt at a four piece cane/wicker suite (I started with the smallest piece the coffee table and aim to have the whole suite finished and cushions recovered by next Aussie summer )the twisted wicker is very intricate and I am hand painting the whole thing, time consuming Yes, but very soothing and therapeutic ( we have had this suite for over 25years and it is in really good nick, just a bit neglected) I wanted to make my own chalk paint and have been researching different recipes. I also found a tin of miss tinted paint at our local hardware store. I am nearly finished the table and want to top coat It with something to protect it. My question is what would you suggest please. I would love to add some before and after shots too
Sarah, I used Varathane’s Water Based Diamond Outdoor Wood Finish in Satin and I applied 3 coats with my spray-gun. However, if you’re doing this all by hand, to make things easier on yourself, you can buy the exact same product in a spray-can version. I believe Minwax also has an outdoor Polyurethane in a spray-can too. All the best with your project… so nice you’ve had 25yrs use and are restyling for the years to come!
Sue Grantham says
My church has a covered pavilion with over a dozen wooden pews. They were painted five or six years ago but are already flaking badly and need to be repainted. The person that painted them last said the flaking was because of painting over the old paint. Would the chalk paint work? Will it adhere to the previously painted surface. Impossible to scrape all of the old paint off.
Sue, painting over anything flaking or chipping (ie rust, paint, shellac etc) leads to poor results regardless of what type of paint or product you use. To get the best result for your wooden pews, a really good sanding with a sander will be beneficial. If you’re re-painting them, you don’t need to get all the old paint off; just enough to remove any flaking paint and even out the adhered paint. Once sanded, you can use a chalk/mineral paint or an outdoor paint of your choice.
Hi! I am wanting to paint my outdoor wicker furniture in Annie Sloan paint? Do you think it will hold up on my uncovered patio?
Yes for sure Taylor! May be a good idea to seal/protect your ASCP furniture with an outdoor all weather poly as it’s an uncovered patio. Sounds like a great project!
Edna Hughes says
I have painted a metal / iron garden seat with chalk paint, it has had two coats but already (1 day later) bubbles of rust are showing through. It is for my daughter who insists it is ok to use chalk paint on metal for outdoor use. any solutions please?
Oh no… sorry to hear this Edna. Your daughter is correct. It is ok to use chalk/mineral paint on metal, however any rust or flaky metal MUST be removed prior. Unfortunately, like a car, you can try to conceal the rust with a paint job but it will bleed through and appear on the surface. The solution is to strip off the paint and any existing rust or flaking metal. I wish I had better news Edna.
Just found your blog, and I love it! May I ask what type of sprayer you use?
Hi Christina! So glad you’ve found the SI Blog too ~ welcome! Here’s a post on the spray gun I use. https://salvagedinspirations.com/free-husky-hvlp-paint-gun-is-on-route/
I am planning on using your paint recipe on an outdoor bench. We live in the hot desert and the bench will often be in the direct sun. How do you think the paint will hold up in the sun. It barely rains here and winter isn’t an issue. Just worried about the sun 😉
I know all too well about that HOT desert sun. My sister and I recently returned from a Mohave Desert adventure…lol. These recipes will hold up just as well or better than any ‘regular’ latex paint job Wendy. You should have no problems especially if you take the time and seal it with an outdoor poly.
I just did a bench with the plaster of paris recipe. The paint was interior latex. I put clear wax as a finish. Will I be able to use the bench outdoors?
Yes Gavin! If it’s outdoors but protected from the elements (ie-under a covered porch/awning etc) it should hold up just fine. If it will be exposed to extreme elements, the wax may need re-applying periodically.
Susan smyers says
I painted an old night stand with POP chalk paint and wax and although it was on a mostly protected condo porch, during a rain storm the moisture caused the POP to surface and it had white chalk all over it. After light sanding, it looked better but I won’the be putting any more DIY chalk painted furniture outside! I there a way tof keep this from happening?
An outdoor poly is ideal for painted outdoor furniture Susan… whether you use chalk/mineral paint or otherwise. It’s specifically made for the elements and holds up really well. 🙂
I’ve read that you shouldn’t wax chalk paint if it’s for outdoor use. The paint holds up very well out doors without the wax.
Luann Combs says
Hello Denise. Love your blog! I am new to the chalk painting world, and am working on three pieces in my garage right now using your plaster of Paris recipe. I used de-glosser first on a chair that was heavily lacquered and it did cover in 2-3 coats very nicely, thank goodness!
But about this particular posting…I have a set of 6 vintage bamboo dining chairs that I am planning to paint and add new seat covers. I am wondering what the benefits would be of using a sprayer vs. a brush for such a large project. There are six more chairs available that I am considering purchasing as well, so I could possibly have 12. Thanks for your input.
– Luann in Kenewick, WA
So happy your having great results with your HMCP Projects Luanne! The great benefit to spraying rather than brush painting chairs is speed. Chairs have plenty of curves, small nooks & crannies. No large flat surfaces. To paint chairs with a brush takes time and patience and if not done properly, can leave plenty of brush stokes. Spraying leaves a flawless finish and because you can line all the chairs up and do them together…it takes much less time.
Amberly Steele says
Beautiful as usual!!!
If you use Annie Sloan’s chalk paint you need no topcoat. I did a plastic Adirondack chair that was Old and had other paint on it last summer. Went through this winter outside and looks as if I painted yesterday. I am using Webster’s chalk paint powder with any latex primer paint and getting great results so far. No topcoat. Well see by the end of summer how it goes. I suspect it will be fine. Thanks
That’s pretty amazing your chair looks perfect after a long winter Kat! For anyone who doesn’t like top-coating, this is good to know! I’m the type of person who topcoats EVERYTHING! If I’m putting work into re-styling something, it HAS to last. Once my pieces are sold, I never know where or what the new owner will be using it for. Please keep us updated because I’m sure a lot of readers will be interested! 🙂
Larry Langston says
I plan to paint a vintage table to set outside in the elements to use as a potting bench. It has its original paint on it. Where do I begin?
Hi Larry! If it were my table 🙂 – I would start by giving the original paint a sanding to create some tooth for the new paint to adhere to. Then apply a few coats of my color, and seeing as it’s going to be worked on and exposed to the elements, I would topcoat with a strong outdoor sealer like this one. Hope that helps. Great project btw.
Rita Cheek says
Denise … enjoying your site! I am bringing an indoor piece of chalk painted wood furniture out doors. I sealed the table with MINIWAX Helmsman spar urethane, clear satin, recommended for outdoors.. It is definitely sealed from the elements but no longer has that charm of chalk paint as is is super shiny! Is there anything I can do? Was thinking about just giving it another coat of chalk paint …
Hi Rita! Hmm, you could give it a light sanding and reaply more chalk paint for sure. Depending on your outdoor weather (ie heat, humidity, rainfall, snow) will depend on how well the unsealed chalk paint will hold up. But if you really like the chalky chalk paint look, it may be well worth giving it a touch up every now and then.