Milk Painted Chalkboard Tutorial

Hello Milk Painters, this is Jenn Baker of Eight Hundred Furniture and I have a fun tutorial to share with you!

Chalkboards are the perfect project to try if you are brand new to Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint.  They’re fast, easy, inexpensive, and versatile!  Even if you’re a veteran and can Milk Paint with your eyes closed, chalkboard projects are a fun way to paint the day away!

I recently acquired a fantastic chalkboard “specimen” from a local antique market and I couldn’t wait to share it with all of you!

This antique wooden ironing board couldn’t be used for its original purpose anymore because it needed some structural reworking.   The legs were all wonky and it was missing a few parts.  It didn’t sit upright properly, as you can see.  Downward facing dog was about all it could do (much like the sun bathing cat in the background).

I used my flathead screwdriver to completely remove the legs along with their hinges.

I needed to use a tiny head attachment because the screws didn’t have a very deep channel.  Getting adequate torque was a bit challenging, but they all came off eventually.

See?  No more hinges!  (P.S. – Isn’t that wood yummy?!)

Now that the legs were off, I could flip the top over and begin painting it.  I saved the set of double legs that are in the top right corner of the photo below and reattached them so the sign propped up like an easel.

I chose Typewriter for my chalkboard because I wanted a traditional black background.  This was going to go in my antique booth to compliment one of my MMS Milk Paint display, and I wanted it to pop.  My plan was to write upcoming demonstrations and workshops on it so shoppers can take part in the fun!  You could also use a mixture of Boxwood and Artissimo to make a vintage green chalkboard.  The formula is 3 parts Boxwood with 2 parts Artissimo.

Here’s what that vintage green chalkboard mixture looks like.  Isn’t it dreamy?

Like I mentioned, I was using Typewriter, so I would have a traditional black look to my chalkboard.

I mixed up about 3/4 cup of Typewriter powder with the same amount of water in a handleless ironstone cup.  Because I was painting on raw wood, I knew it would be thirsty and soak up a lot of Milk Paint.

I painted two coats of Typewriter on the front and along the sides of the ironing board.  Typewriter has excellent coverage and soon, all of those scratches, nicks, and dings were gone!

Things were looking beautiful about half way through the first coat.

It didn’t take very long to dry either.  Milk Paint soaks in more like a stain rather than laying on the surface like modern paints such as latex or chalk-type paint.  It dries pretty fast on raw wood.  Each coat took about 20 minutes to dry.

After the board was dry, I went over it with 400 grit sandpaper to smooth away some of sediment that didn’t brush out.  I wanted a relatively smooth writing surface, so the 400 grit sandpaper helped.  I did get wind up getting some white specks from the dried pigments, but I was going to season the board with chalk anyway so it didn’t matter.

“Seasoning” a chalkboard is essential to prevent your words from being burned onto the surface.  This is also called “ghosting”.  Basically, you take a piece of chalk, turn it sideways, and rub it all over your new chalkboard.  Here’s Miss Mustard Seed herself demonstrating this step on one of her HGTV tutorials.

After seasoning the chalkboard, I wiped it back with a paper towel.  My last step was to rework the legs so the ironing board stood up more like an easel or a sign.

And voila!  Milk Painted chalkboard complete!

If you would like to make your own Milk Paint chalkboard, here’s a list of materials you’ll need:

  • MMS Milk Paint (Typewriter or 3 parts Boxwood and 2 parts Artissimo)
  • Wooden chalkboard surface (Or you can even use glass!  Just add our Bonding Agent in)
  • Piece of chalk
  • Rag or paper towel
  • Paintbrush
  • Stir stick or mini whisk
  • Mixing cup

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2 thoughts on “Milk Painted Chalkboard Tutorial

  1. Jo

    WOw this turned out lovely! You mean to tell me that Mustard seed milk paint is the equivalent to chalkboard paint that you purchase in the stores? I have several packets of your milk paint and If I am able to just take some and paint it on a surface and then take a piece of chalk and write on it, then erase it and re-draw on it, that it will work ??? If that is the case than I am in LOVE!!!


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