Santa Clarita Chalk/Clay Paints: How do I apply the top coat?

How do I apply the top coat?

Screenshot 2016-06-17 19.19.01Top Coat from American Paint Company is my #1 single selling product!  It is easy to use for beginners but long time chalk-clay painters find it a necessity.  It can be applied with a sponge brush or even a rag.  A staining pad is a nice combination of the two which is especially nice for larger surface projects such as a table or dresser.  You can find the staining pads at most home improvement stores I find mine at Harbor Freight but I sell them at Barn & Charm individually if you don’t want to purchase a large package.  I use a sponge brush for workshops and small to medium size projects.  Get a good quality sponge brush.  Pass up the ones at the dime stores (showing my age) dollar stores they tend to not last through a project or are not firm enough to hold the hard coat.  Here is a very important set by step instruction for application of the Top Coat…….the trick is to apply very thin.

  1. Pour amount into small Styrofoam bowl, no more than ½ a cup.  Do not dilute, use full strength. It is very thin.
  2. With a good quality sponge brush, saturate the brush with the Top Coat.
  3. Now wring out the Top Coat from the sponge portion of the brush on the sides of the bowl.  Push so much out of the brush that you don’t think there is anything left.
  4. Brush on your completely dried painted surface.  You will be amazed how much IS on the brush.
  5. Let each coat dry completely before applying another, at least 20 min.  If you see any drip marks as it is drying just brush out with your damp sponge brush or a rag.
  6. 3-4 coats for table top surfaces and 1-2 for other.
  7. After final application or in-between if desired, you may “paper bag”.  This gives it a very smooth to the touch finish.  Just use a paper bag torn into a comfortable size to run over the surface as if it was a piece of sandpaper.  This is much gentler, cheaper and you will feel the results!
  8. Clean up with water for years of a durable finish.  
  • NOTE:  if you feel you want another coat or two down the road you may add another coat at any time on a clean surface.  If you want to paint over this surface, the same is true!  

Barn & Charm – 22700 #A Lyons Ave.  Newhall, CA  91321  –  661-255-5466   (Open 7 days a week)

Santa Clarita Chalk/Clay Paints: I think I want to wax my project.  What is the difference between your wax and others?

Screenshot 2016-06-17 19.18.30When I hear someone wants to wax their project I ask them a few questions first.  How are they going to use it?  Do you have children or animals?  Do you see yourself re-painting this piece down the road?  Are you ok with re-waxing buffing if needed?  Usually I ask these questions and ¾ of my customers decide to top coat.  I think mostly because they want durability and have children that will use and possibly abuse the surface.  But if you are doing a buffet for your dining room, wax could still be your choice.  The basic choices are clear or dark wax.  Either one is NO VOCs, are a creamy, easy to use wax that cures to a beautiful and durable sheen.  There are several brands out there.  You can go to your local hardware store, another chalk-clay paint store, a home paint store, etc. and find several different brands.  Hard or liquid waxes.  Also be careful with other brands waxes and read the labels. There are several waxes by other manufactures that are high in toxins, which is a concern to many.   VOCs are such a concern now and with the wonderful choices for paint on the market with NO VOCs, why would you apply a wax or top coat that is toxic…..why?  That pretty much is a slap in the face to the healthy qualities of the good for you and good for the environment paint.  Why would you do that when you have other choices out there?   Maybe you don’t actually know what you are using.  Watch out of the kindler gentler skull and cross bones on packaging…..yup, it’s out there.   I’m only speaking here about the lines I carry at Barn & Charm when I say No or Low VOC.  My clear and dark wax by Screenshot 2016-06-17 19.18.38American Paint Company is NO VOCs.  You can use our paints, waxes (APC) and top coats on your kitchen counter as they have no fumes, no toxins that you need to ventilate …….it’s all good stuff.  Users rave about how smooth our wax is and ease of use.  No need to use a clear wax before using the dark wax.  I also have a very easy and practical technique of applying wax that will prevent heavy application which is one of the main reason wax doesn’t cure properly or never achieves that smooth shine that is desired no matter how long you buff.  Any one of us will be happy to share this easy waxing technique with you. I carry several colored waxes as well.  I’m loving the White wax from Heirloom Traditions (Low VOCs) that gives a wonderful liming effect and also their Barn Wood wax that easily with the right color paint or a combination gives you a fun barn wood effect.  The clear wax seals and protects the color paint as intended in color or can be used after glazing.  You can mix the clear and dark to make a medium wax shade you desire.  Dark wax will completely change the color of your paint.  It gives a wonderful vintage antiqued effect but look at brown or black glaze too.  Sometimes the glaze is actually the desired effect.  Come in and we will see the best way to achieve your desired finish.  Follow my blogs and soon I will cover glazing which is very easy, not to be intimidating at all!


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Barn & Charm – 22700 #A Lyons Ave.  Newhall, CA  91321  –  661-255-5466   (Open 7 days a week)

Santa Clarita Chalk/Clay Paints: Do I have to seal chalk-clay paints? What do I use to seal?

Screenshot 2016-06-17 19.19.46When I think of frequently asked questions…, there are so many. I’m talking about questions around chalk clay mineral based paints. What is it?, how to do it?, etc. I carry about 5 different lines of paint and painting supplies from 4 chalk-clay paint brands, to stencils, brushes, glazes, wax (clear, dark & several colors), micas, metallic paint, fabric primer and sealer, top coat, hard coat, primer (white and clear), ……did I take a breath? No I didn’t…..I have embossing medium, foils rolls and foil medium, image transfer gel, …..ugh, sorry, I have to take a breath. But back to frequently asked questions…..probably my most basic question is how do I seal it? Yes, you need to seal and protect chalk-clay paints because they will absorb moisture and change color. You will notice rings or marks where moisture was left, paint will damage and soil easily from dirt or fingerprints and it will just not look finished. After you have finished painting something the surface will be chalky and slightly lighter than the intended color. Once you seal it, either with a wax or a top coat you will prevent damage and truly protect your painted surface. The intended color will also pop back in all its intended glory as soon as your sealer is applied. But should you wax or use a top coat? If you wax something, be prepared to treat it like a fine piece of furniture, ie, use a coaster. Wax is traditional for this type of paint and does leave a beautiful finish. Top Coat will make the piece water resistant and leave a perfect surface to repaint if down the road you want to change the color. With wax you must remove the wax with either sanding, denatured alcohol or a solvent before you repaint, just something to consider. Hard Coat is a great choice for kitchen cabinets or kitchen tables, or any surface you want extra protection and very durable as well as ability to really clean. My most popular is the top coat by American Paint Company. Many who have been using other paint brands cannot tell the difference between this top coat and wax. It’s so practical for families wanting durability and the desire to change paint colors down the road. It is a very sensible choice. If you already have a polyurethane on hand, yes you may use that as well and I do carry a couple in the store. These usually are a higher gloss sheen not usually desired but may find practical for outside use. Please be aware there is no guarantee it will not yellow and of course these products usually are not “no” or “low VOCs” as you will find with our sealers. Stop in and take a look at the many options we have to seal and protect your project and let us help you make the perfect choice.

Barn & Charm – 22700 #A Lyons Ave. Newhall, CA 91321 – 661-255-5466 (Open 7 days a week)

Antique Appraisal 2014 Santa ClaritaThe Painted Shutter & Co.. is proud to present the first annual Antique Appraisal Event in downtown Newhall. The “Antique Roadshow” style event will be held at the shop on Main Street in downtown Newhall on Saturday, October 18, 2014, from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM. Bring your hidden treasures and discover how much value has been hiding in your garage for years! Tickets are only $5.00 per item online or $10.00 at the door. To register, click here

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to “The Assistance League of Santa Clarita.”

1410887773_pdfDownload the flyer – click here