You can even apply chalk-finish paint to fabric, ranging from stenciled drop cloth curtains to upholstery fabric to outdoor cushions.
"This is a good 'quick fix' for a chair you kind of like, or think has potential, but don't want to spend a lot of money on having it reupholstered," said Ashley Poskin, in an article for ApartmentTherapy.com. "It's also a great way to get creative by adding stripes or patterns onto plain fabric, without a huge investment."
And, it's relatively easy to control whether the paint is applied full-color or as a light gradient. To create a dye wash for a upholstery fabric, for example, add water to dilute the chalk paint and then test the mixture on an unseen patch of fabric. You can adjust the water/paint ratio until the color wash is the preferred intensity, and then it apply it to the fabric. After it is dry, the fabric can be heat-sealed with an iron or by setting the chair in the sun.
While this easy project can breathe new life into a chair with an outdated style, it does have limitations. "My once soft, comfortable cotton felt scratchy, almost like outdoor fabric," Poskin adds in Apartment Therapy. "In the end, know that it doesn't feel anything like upholstery fabric. So, if you wake up one day and decide your yellow living room sofa would look pretty turquoise instead, chalk paint isn't necessarily your answer because you probably don't want to sit on it daily."
Upcycling furniture with chalk-finish paint may sometimes necessitate special tools. “Chalk paint finishes sometimes require a thick, round custom brush to achieve best results,” says Cohen.
Although chalk-finish paint is more expensive than other types of interior paints, you typically need less chalk paint to finish a project because it can be applied in only one or two thick coats. Cohen starts by applying a dark layer of paint to furniture, then coating most of the surface with a crackle medium.
“After the chalk paint is applied, it will crack to show a beautiful black web of vintage crackles,” he says.
Although Cohen uses a chalk paint method to give new life to old furniture, there are lots of other home project ideas using chalk paint to spruce up everything from fireplace mantels to front doors.