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Paris Grey Chalk Painted Chair – The Zero Dollar DIY Challenge

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We are so very excited for today’s post. We are participating in the bi-monthly Zero Dollar DIY Challenge. Every other month this group will create projects that cost no new money. What? That’s right – we will each roam our garages, closets, basements, etc. to find an item that we meant to reimagine, but just never got around to doing anything with it. Lord knows we each have tons of these items in our homes. Without further adieu let us introduce you to our Paris Grey chalk painted chair!

image for group

Before we get started we want to assure each and everyone of you that we did a lot of research before we put one stroke of paint on this chair.

2 Bees in a Pod. This antique chair is a bit broken and tattered - ready for a chalk paint makeover.

It was given to us by a dear friend that didn’t want it in her garage anymore. It was stored at her home for many, many years and she tired of tripping over it. She told us we had her blessing to do with it as we wished. We never want to paint a fine antique piece of furniture, so we asked a friend and antique expert for their professional opinion. The wooden finish was badly damaged with knicks, scrapes and a couple of gouges. One leg is wobbly and the only way to repair it would be to take the upholstery totally apart in order to reach the top of the chair leg. His final opinion was this…”The only value of this Victorian side chair is sentimental at best”. Upon hearing this we felt confident to forge ahead with our plans.

2 Bees in a Pod. As you can see by the chair legs - this was a makeover waiting to happen.

We waited for a sunny day to take this project outside.


  • Paris Grey Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan
  • Water
  • Spray Bottle
  • Paintbrush
  • Tarp
  • Paint Can Opener
  • Empty Can
  • Clear Paste Wax
  • Rags

2 Bees in a Pod. Supplies needed to paint the chair.

We have a lot of experience with painted furniture. This project is a bit different as the fabric was going to be painted as well. We had terrific success with this Painted Wing Chair with this  Painted Wing Chair Update using latex paint and a fabric medium. But we didn’t have any latex paint in the garage – and remember this is a zero dollar challenge. After checking through our paint stash we determined that we would use Chalk Paint in the color of Paris Grey. We read differing and conflicting tutorials online. In the end we went with our gut reaction and expertise to come up with our own tutorial.

Step 1. Clean chair thoroughly. It needs to be free of dust, dirt, grime and oil. Vacuuming fabric might be necessary.

Step 2. Using an empty can or other water tight vessel, mix equal parts chalk paint and water. Stir and blend very well.

Step 3. Using a spray water bottle, mist the upholstery fabric well. Don’t saturate the fabric – mist it with water and work it into the fabric with your hand. This is a very important step! Otherwise your paint won’t work into the fabric – it will just lay on top and eventually crack when the paint dries.

2 Bees in a Pod. Mist the upholstery fabric before you begin chalk painting.

Step 4. Using a paintbrush, start painting the upholstery fabric. Be sure your final stroke goes with the grain of the fabric – especially if the fabric has a nape such as this velvet. You don’t want your hard work ruined by a crunchy piece of fabric that was painted in the wrong direction.

This is after one coat of chalk paint.

2 Bees in a Pod. This is the chair after the first coat of chalk paint.

Step 5. Let dry completely.

Step 6. Feel your fabric. If there are any rough or crunchy spots, lightly sand and smooth them out with sandpaper.

Step 7. Repeat steps 4 through 6.

This is after just two coats – we painted the entire chair, upholstery and wood in Paris Grey.

2 Bees in a Pod. Chalk painted chair after 2nd coat of paint.

There was no need for additional coats of paint. If you have a very dark fabric, it may require more coats of paint. Again, you want the fabric to feel smooth free of rough or crunchy patches.

Step 8. Here’s the scary part…add a light coat of clear paste wax to the wood AND the painted upholstery. This adds an important layer of protection.

2 Bees in a Pod. Add a coat of paste wax to the chair.

Isn’t she lovely?

2 Bees in a Pod. Side chair painted with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Paris Grey.

Originally we thought about painting the chair in Pure White…we are so glad we changed our minds!

2 Bees in a Pod. Paris Grey Chalk Paint. Chalk Painted side chair.

Now the fabric feels like soft leather.

2 Bees in a Pod. Victorian side chair gets a chalk paint makeover



2 Bees in a Pod. Paris Grey Chalk Painted Chair

It looks so pretty next to the painted armoireYou can see that post HERE.

2 Bees in a Pod. Paris Grey chalk paint for a Victoria Chair.

Perfect pairing – the Paris Grey looks even more beautiful next to the Aubusson Blue.

Chalk Painted Victorian Chair in Paris Grey


2 Bees in a Pod. Paris Grey chalk painted Victorian side chair.


2 Bees in a Pod. Chalk painted side chair.

Not bad for zero dollars spent!



2 Bees in a Pod. Chalked Painted Side Chair - before and after

We are so happy that we finally got around to completing this project. Are you inspired to complete a project at your house? Tell us all about – we’d love to hear from you!

Blog Signature Vicki and Jenn

2 Bees in a Pod. Paris Grey Chalk Painted Chair. Group Collage Graphic.


We’ll be back in April with a special Earth Day edition of There for the Making. For now, we hope you’ll pour yourself another cup of coffee and visit the other bloggers participating in our no-spend DIY series. The next blogger in our hop today is our host Sarah of Flourish and Knot. All of these projects prove that we have hidden craft and DIY possibilities waiting in our homes! It IS possible to be creative without spending a dime!

There for the Making – February Challenge!

DIY Birch Business Card Holder by Minty Green Dream

Chalk Paint Chair Makeover by 2 Bees in a Pod

Sponge-Painted Picture Frame Makeover by Flourish & Knot

DIY Chalkboard Monogram by Personally Andrea

Gemstone Wrap Bracelet by Lifeovereasy

“Hello Sunshine” Wall Art by Two Purple Couches

St. Patrick’s Day Wine Bottle Makeover by Green with Decor

DIY Barn Board Mirror – Ikea Hack by Vin’yet Etc.

DIY Organizational Clipboard by DIY Passion

Geometric Planter by Love Create Celebrate

Toilet Paper Roll Turned Plastic Bag Holder by Design Inside the Box

Chair Makeover by Simple Nature Decor

Vintage Toolbox Turned Craft Storage by My Creative Days


  1. I painted a fabric chair once and didn’t like it. You have inspired me to definitely try it again! Great makeover!

  2. Just amazing and beautiful!

  3. This turned out so cool, its such a great look and looks like much fun too! I love the colors of the flowers against the grey color. Very pretty.

  4. What an incredible transformation! I had no idea you could use chalk paint on fabric!

  5. I saw this beautiful chair on Pinterest and had no idea that was painted fabric, what a wonderful job, it looks like leather!

  6. You girls really rock the chalk paint! I’m so skeptical to try it on fabric but maybe you’ve inspired me!

  7. I had no idea you could paint upholstery and have it come out looking so great! What a lovely idea!

  8. You guys always do such a gorgeous job painting fabric! I love the lines of this chair and I love the way it turned out too. So pretty! Hugs, CoCo

  9. What a huge transformation! Love it!

  10. Wow – what an amazing makeover! I’ve never thought about painting upholstery – it’s a whole new world 😉

  11. The chair looks beautiful, now I want to try fabric painting, your instructions are excellent thank you!

  12. Kathy Howard says:

    I will be on house arrest for 10 weeks with a dog recovering from knee surgery. This is definitely on my list of “projects to do at home so I don’t go stir crazy”. Thanks!

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