Outdoor Armoire with Homemade Chalk Paint

Believe it or not, I actually finished a couple other projects over the summer in addition to the bathroom. I mostly worked on these while Tony was completing tiling, but then I got so busy with finish work, I didn’t have time to get them on the blog!

One of these projects was an outdoor storage piece. Like most everyone else, we have outdoor stuff that needs a home, like sports equipment, patio furniture cushions, and gardening tools, but until we can build a garage, we need a place to put these items… besides the shed, because the shed is scary. So, I started surfing CraigsList looking for an old armoire that could go on our back porch. I found several great looking pieces, but pounced on the one that was right here in Olathe. The girl emailed back and it turns out that we know her! Tony paints with her husband all summer, so even though they were out of town for the weekend, we were welcome to go over and take a look at the armoire. It was perfect (meaning, it was huge and super cheap). Talk about a win-win! It took 2 guys to bring it over to the house as it was so heavy! This is what it looked like after the boys unloaded it.

The thing was fabulous dinged up from the two kiddos in the previous owners’ home, which was just right for me.

I decided to try chalk paint on this baby. It seems like everybody’s doing it, and I should probably try it out. However, I’m far too cheap to spring for the real stuff! I mixed about a cup of baking soda into my banana yellow paint (the color in these pics is muted because they were taken under the back porch roof when it was bright outside, but the color in the last one is accurate) instead. It mixed in pretty well and didn’t leave big clumps, but it was quite chalky after it dried!

I didn’t want it to have real even coverage, so I just did two coats. Once those two coats were on, I started distressing it a bit with the electric sander.

With chalk paint you’re supposed to sand the whole thing pretty well after the last coat so it’s nice and smooth, but I actually wanted to keep some of the texture. I knew I’d be applying a darker coat over the top, and I wanted some of the color to stick in those grooves. So I just gave a really good sanding to the edges, down to bare wood, and a really light sanding with a block sander to everything else. I applied a dark wood stain just to the bare wood with a cheap old paint brush.

For the rest of the piece, I found that the dark stain was too dark. It made the yellow look muddy, not the mustard color I was going for. So, I tried another new thing – glaze. Martha Stewart’s glaze was on sale at Home Depot, so I mixed a little of that with my favorite dark wood stain and painted it on with a disposable brush.

I painted just a little stain on at a time, then rubbed it off with a paper towel, alternating a circular and back and forth motion. I didn’t want to to be consistent. Here you can see how it adjusted the color.

Once the paint was dry I added some new knobs from Hobby Lobby to complete the makeover!


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2 Responses to Outdoor Armoire with Homemade Chalk Paint

  1. Nancy Clewell says:

    We have the same armoire and it certainly is a monster. Great piece. Love the color you chose.

  2. Pam McNicoll says:

    It is beautiful Lindy!! It makes me smile every time I come to the back porch!
    Love, Mom

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