Tuesday, March 25, 2014


This is one of the projects I have been busy with for the past few months. We're getting the house ready to sell, in order to downsize to a one-story empty-nester, so we are in the process of redesigning our master bedroom and en-suite. We like contemporary design, with a few antiques thrown in, so I built Anna White's Pottery Barn knock-off Farmhouse Bed, and painted it  - with 3 coats of homemade chalk paint and 3 coats of hand waxed lusciousness,  no distressing - in Martha Stewart's Bedford Gray, to give it a more modern feel. I built the bed from pine, using 4x4-inch posts for the legs. I did not have to use wood conditioner to treat the pine before using the chalk paint - love that stuff for so many reasons, this being one of them, and it covered the knot holes beautifully, although I was careful to buy lumber with as few knots as possible. We went to a lumber yard for the wood, instead of one of the big box stores. I altered Anna's plans a bit so I could use pocket hole joinery as much as possible, and the legs are attached with some very long screws. I ordered some bed frame hardware from Rockler, so that we could break the bed down to move it - it weighs a ton! The wall behind the bed is done in her "Seal", a gorgeous, warm, dark gray color. I can't get enough of that color right now. I made the large, print pillow covers from a shower curtain my daughter found at Marshall's. I found a beauty of a bench for $5 at Goodwill, with curvy claw foot legs, that will sit at the foot of the bed when I finish repairing some of the broken trim, and paint it creamy white. I am making a box cushion for it out of charcoal gray pinstripe men's suiting fabric, to balance the yin and yang. I made a paper flower sculpture to go above the bed, in white Bristol board, cut on the Cricut. I'll post the bench when I get it done.


Anonymous said...

Hi, what recipe do you use for your homemade chalk paint? I love how your bed came out!


Anonymous said...

Hi, what recipe do you use for your chalk paint? I love how the bed came out!


Laura said...

Sorry to be so late with a reply! I use Diane's recipe from In My Own Style (love, love, love her blog.) I originally tried a formula using Plaster of Paris and calcium carbonate, but it hardened on me, so I chucked it.
I bought a 1-gallon container - a lifetime supply - of white calcium carbonate at Home Depot (it's called line marking chalk, and comes in different colors), for $10. I ordered it online and picked it up at my local store - no shipping.

For 1 cup of paint (a little chalk paint goes a long way!):
2 tablespoons calcium carbonate
1 tablespoon water
1 cup latex paint

Combine calcium carbonate and water, stirring until smooth. Stir in latex paint, mixing thoroughly.

To make a quart, combine 8 tablespoons of calcium carbonate and 4 tablespoons of water, and combine thoroughly with 1 quart of latex paint.

Here is the link to the recipe on Diane's blog:

Brianna said...

Your bed is absolutely beautiful! Awesome job! I'm getting ready to build the Ana White farmhouse bed also. How well did the chalk paint do at hiding the knot holes in the raw wood? Did you put down a coat of something like shellac or wood conditioner before applying the chalk paint? I plan to use chalk paint and am a little concerned about the knot holes showing through once it is painted. Also, did you use pine or another type of wood? Thanks in advance!

Laura said...

Wow - can you tell how much I've ignored this blog??? In answer to your questions, I did not apply a wood conditioner on the pine - I only do that if I am going to stain the finished piece. The chalk paint covered exceptionally well, although I was pretty careful to choose wood with as few knot holes as possible. Where there were knotholes, I made sure they were small and tight on exposed areas of the bed. One thing - Don't forget to sign and date your bed on the back - it is a piece of handmade art!
I am getting ready to paint another piece - a hutch base that belonged to my mother. I will be using a semi-gloss enamel paint on it for the hardness of the finish on a table top, but think I will try adding some chalk to it for the vertical planes of the piece. I love the soft look of the chalk paint finish.


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