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The excitement of the finished piece

I get excited when I find something I want to chalk paint…I can look at a piece and envision it as something beautiful and new again.. that was the case  in this fireplace mantel.. I had seen it at a little second-hand store , hidden behind tons of furniture…it spoke to me… “take me home”…but I figured it more than likely wasn’t it that good of shape..or why else was it still here? These days fireplace mantels seem to be few and far between and when you do find one..they think they are GOLD and want a arm and a leg for I left it..

The next Saturday I went back to the same store..and there it was still hidden only behind even more junk this time.. again it called out to me… take me home..please please rescue me…it seemed to be saying… so this time I spoke up and said..How much is the fireplace mantel? For you dear…$25.00.. $25 I said..what’s wrong with it, I thought? I bet the bottom boards are rotten.. that won’t do me much good I thought.. so I left..

But something kept telling me to turn around a go back..and I did. The fireplace mantel, can you get it out for me , I said..are you going to take it, the man said? Yes, if the bottom boards are in good shape, I say.. they are fine..he said..after 20 minutes of moving things.. the fireplace was completely reveled to me for the first time… I have to tell you , it was love at first sight!! I had to contain my excitment..I figured he might ask for me, if I seemed to egar..$25 right? Yes  Dear …$25… it’s been here a long time.. I’ll cut you a break the old man said.. he put it in the back of my truck and we were off and running…no looking seemed to thank me..for taking it home…for both of us it was love at first sight!

Now painting it was another story.. I stood it up and tried to imagine it in a room…with Christmas stockings on it…candles and a big mirror..over it..oh how beautiful I thought…but what color.. I get tired of painting everything antique white.. although I know its in style I do love color…maybe RED , or how about green?

Somehow I couldn’t imagine those stocking on the mantel with those colors..,maybe a darker white more of a tan color then I could jazz it up with accessories…at any holiday..

So I pick out a tan color and mixed it to make my homemade Chalk Paint.. from the moment I slathered on the paint.. I didn’t like it.. maybe it will grow on me I thought.. nope not growing on me..yet I continued to paint.. all of it.. it was way darker than I liked.. not Country French at all..more of a brown than tan.. and the more it dried the darker it become. YEK! I’ve ruined it I thought to myself..UGH! This was the first thing I had painted that I didn’t like..I put away my supplies and went into the house.. thinking of how ugly the thing was.. I was sure it wished it was still underneath all that JUNK…so no one could see it…

The next day I tackled the mantel first thing in the morning.. I have to repaint it.. I can’t leave it like this.. so I grabbed my Antique white…made some homemade chalk paint.. and went to town repainting my piece…ok its white.. but I still don’t like it.. no charm at all I thought.. what’s a girl to do?

Hum…I sat in the chair in front of it and really stared at it..thinking of days gone past and how many people must of kept warm in front of that old mantel.. oh the stories it could tell….

I know.. I will antique it!!! With my “special concoction” and an old tshirt , I applied my antiquing…slowly…with purpose..inch by inch I covered each piece of wood….rubbing…and adding more..taking some off..and gently rubbing in circles…I began to get excitied as the beauty of it started to show..YES! This is what I imagined I said..

Carefully, slowly.. I worked the antiquing into my mantel..ever so gently..too much and it could ruin it.. I wanted charm… And CHARM is what I got!!!!!

I stood back and looked at my mantel..Beautiful I thought… Beautiful!

This is what I had in mind from the first time I laid eyes on it..oh the stories it will see in the years to come..I hope someone falls in love with it as I did… and cares for me.

Did I mention I love chalk painting? It brings out the beauty in a piece…the brown that I had but on it first came through when I distressed the piece…and some of the original white too…I love chalk painting!


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Homemade Chalk Paint vs Commercial Chalk Paint

Chalk painting.. unless you live under a rock these days…just about everyone has heard of it..or seen it in use.. it’s the hottest thing on the market in paint right now..and rightly so..this stuff is like “magic” to those of us who paint furniture..and just about anything else.. there is no prep sanding…no nothing..just paint and go!!!!!!! I love it… I love it! I love it! Did I mention that I love chalk painting..????

Well , if you know about chalk painting then you know that it is a little bit pricey… for the commercial stuff…now although I believe it is worth the price…my pocket book says otherwise…and I love the commercial stuff..don’t get me wrong..but can the homemade stuff be just as good and a lot less money???

Well I used the “HOMEMADE CHALK PAINT” first… I have been painting up a storm with it.. some ( who shall remain nameless) Call me a painting fool…but I love it.. I love the look of it..the ease of it.. I just love it..

I am into the Shabby Chic.. Country French.. distressed look…love it.. and this is what you get with chalk paint..and its so easy… I am actually going to the Friday night auctions so I can get furniture to paint.. (yes most of mine in the house has already been PAINTED!!!)

When I learned of HOMEMADE CHALK PAINT I quickly jumped on the band wagon with it.. I ran, not walked to my local Lowe’s to hunt down the ingredients …which I have wrote about before.. this time I am getting into specifics…

I have spent hours..yes hours is correct…at the paint department looking over all of their paint choices… thinking of the piece I want to paint..where it is going to be used …and what color I want it to be..its like a child..when you give them a has to fit the child…and you know when you have that baby in your arms..and call out its name..if it “fits” the baby.. sometimes it doesn’t and you quickly change the name.. sometimes..its just right…I actually remember a woman who named her baby and two weeks later went and changed it…it just didn’t feel right she said.. she was born to be a Natalie..not a Debra…

To me, painting is like giving birth to a become one with the piece.. you give it lots of love and attention in getting it just right…you look at your new  piece..very carefully ..checking for imperfections..checking  for grooves..and markings..when I see a piece for the first time I get excited about it..running colors through my head…thinking of ways to make it special.. clear wax, dark wax? Two tone? One color or two? If you don’t like it just repaint…

And back to the paint.. I make my own.. the colors are endless for me.. I can mix and match all I want.. I enjoy the challenge of coming up with just the right color for my piece…but with so much talk about the commercial chalk paint.. I decided I better give it a try so I did..

Now I told myself  from the very beginning have to have an open mind about this paint… No  pre judging , so I set out to use some commercial paint.. I choose a beautiful pink color and used the commercial dark wax over turned out beautifully…

ImageI really like the way it came together with the color and the dark wax.. as far as the application of the chalk paint.. it took two coats for me to get the coverage I wanted.. Normally with the homemade chalk paint.. I only have to use one.  I thought the commercial chalk paint dried very quickly..more than the homemade chalk paint.. however that was not a good thing for me. I like to go back and cover any palaces that I might need to touch up . And the commercial chalk paint left brush marks when I did that, unlike my homemade chalk paint. I think the outcome was a beautiful piece. However the ease of it wasn’t happening with the commercial paint..the homemade chalk paint  is a much smoother..little thicker , better coverage paint. and I like that.. however there are people who swear by this paint. Some will argue the selection of colors are FANTASTIC..which I like them..but I just am creative enough to come up with my own beautiful colors..

So it comes down to $13 a sample..vs my homemade chalk paint at $2.89 a sample..or a commercial $38 quart..vs homemade $14.00…well the price wins…out.. not only the price wins..but the easy of the homemade paint going on my piece and coverage it gives me..out weighs it all…I’ve always been one to go off the beaten path and make my own..I’ve always been the one to do things just a little bit differently.. I’ve always been the one to do things my way….so I guess making my own Homemade Chalk Paint is what works best for can choose whats best for you..

Home made chalk paint projects below…


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Taste of fall : loaded baked potato soup!


I love… love my crock pot..all three of them! Yes I have crock pot overload….but in my defense , there are times when I am cooking for a crowd that I need that many!!! At any given time I use two….usually one for the meal and another for dessert!
I use my crockpot 24/7….in the summer its nice because it doesn’t heat up the kitchen to cook…and I can make corn on the cob..ala cart….the crockpot with no fuss….not to mention easy  baked  potatoes to go with those ribs on the grill… the winter I love it for soups..after ball game meals….and for busy days after work! At The holidays its nice to have the extra crockpots to cook with!!! I can even make an overnight breakfast oatmeal dish that will make anyone want to get out of bed in the morning….so in case you didn’t know it yet…the crockpot is your best friend in the kitchen..its like having an extra set of hands!
Today was a gloomy wet day….the perfect day for loaded baked potato soup! If you’ve not tried this yet…run do not  walk to your.local grocer…and pick up the necessary ingredients!! You can thank me later!
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My next project

This is the material inspiration for my next project… today when I was out taking my Madolyn to the Vet…I came across a yard sale..not one to pass up a good thing.. I stopped!

I found an incredible large wall mirror that I can’t wait for it to stop raining so I can paint!!! I also got a three tired stand..and a wood bench!

This is where the material comes in.. the bench.. I think I am going to chalk paint it black..distress it a little..and then add one of the material at the the seat… I favor the one on the right with the written.. you can’t tell it but it is burlap.. I love this.. however one who shall not be named..likes the one on the left..

So help me out here and  tell me what you think..should it be the black and white material or the printed burlap???  Leave me a message and tell me what you think… Hopefully it will stop raining so I can paint tomorrow.. I HAVE to do the mirror first ! I love it!!!



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I love Chalk Painting!!!!!!!!!!

Have I mentioned I LOVE CHALK PAINTING!!!!!!

I am in love with chalk painting.. I love the results of it..the feel of it.. the look of it..the ease of it! I love it all…

and I can make any color that I desire! I don’t have to confine my choices to the commercial stuff out there that cost an arm and a leg..I make my own..  I have posted the recipe in a previous post on other pieces of furniture I have done..go here to view recipe:…

The above picture is of my latest is what it looked like before I painted it..

I bought this at a boot sale when I lived in England.. I think I gave maybe 3 pounds for it..that would be around $6.oo here.. I liked the stand..but the plain wood didn’t really do anything for me.. so I painted it.. I love the results..

I loved it so much I painted these white shelves to use along with it.. I love the pale yellow..just enough of color to POP in the room…

and here are the finished shelves!

I am here to tell you I am not a painter by any stretch of the imagination! But I can Chalk Paint.. so..even if you don’t paint…try this..I think you will love it…

this is what I did…I mixed my paint with the unsanded grout…a little water..and I painted away on my pieces…I let it dry…and then I distressed  my piece..added wax…let cure 24 hours..and then I buffed my piece..and it is smooth as a baby’s butt!! I love it!!!!

So give it a try…come on..its easy I am telling you..give me a shout if you have any questions..and I will try my best to help!