Painting a Porch with Chalk Paint® (and Milk Paint too)

We love it when we can share customer testimonials. This one is especially nice from Carrie, who lives in Western NY. We literally copied her write verbatim- so I hope you enjoy all that she has done. She has photos showing the projects after one year of being done too!

Painting Porches with Chalk Paint® (and Milk Paint too!)
Three years ago, I wrote a post about painting the walls of our house with chalk paint.  Since then, my love of chalk paint has continued, so much so that sometimes when I am talking to people they say, “Wait, are you the Carrie who visits The Purple Painted Lady?”  Indeed, I am! When you live in Fairport village (located in NY state), a front porch-friendly community, you feel a certain responsibility to have a friendly, welcoming porch.  Our little 1930’s cedar shingle house has many features that I adore; however, one of them is NOT all of the latex paint on the porches that peels and flakes with the slightest touch.  Two years ago, my husband and I started working on the porches, not realizing quite how much work we were getting ourselves into at the time, but I can honestly say the results have been worth every bit of the work.  
Front Porch Before:

The original plan was to scrape the flaking paint off the porch and then apply Honfleur Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan.  Once we started scraping, we noticed that a large quantity of paint was being removed and that the stair treads were not worth saving.  When we replaced the stair treads and had bare wood to work with the plan changed. We considered Curio Milk Paint instead.  As milk paint applies evenly to raw wood, we knew that one big step that we would now need to complete was stripping and sanding the other front porch surfaces.  
Front Porch Preparation Stage:

We scraped and sanded for 3 days until we decided that the treads were not worth saving.  At the end, we removed each of them and replaced the treads with new wood.  

We used a “green” chemical stripping agent to remove no fewer than 12 layers of paint from the ledge.  It took many applications!

We tested the paint for lead, and even though it came back negative, we still took extra precautions when removing the paint.  

We rented a floor sander for a day but soon discovered that sanding off several layers of porch paint takes double that.    

Removing all of the debris was an ongoing process.  After sweeping throughout the project, we used a shop vac.  

After the shop vac, we wet a paint pad with plain tap water, wiped the surface dust from the porch, and let everything dry for a few days.  
Front Porch Painting Stage:

We chose Louis Blue Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan for the ceiling.  As you can see, we chose to paint the ceiling before removing the paint from the other surfaces of the porch.  

Glass jars work perfectly for mixing large quantities of milk paint.  

The raw wood of the new treads absorbed the paint more quickly than the older wood on the porch; however, by adjusting the number of coats that we applied, we made the finished appearance look very similar.  

Before painting the floor, we primed and painted the old beadboard.  
Front Porch Oil Stage:

We used Miss Mustard Seed’s Hemp Oil to seal and protect the porch.  It is hard to predict how many coats 90 year old wood will take.  After 3 coats, we started oiling spots that seemed to soak the oil in and dry very quickly until they seemed saturated as well.  After applying the oil, we let the porch and stairs sit undisturbed for 2 weeks to allow the oil to cure. The result is a warm, rich color that still allows some visibility of the grain of the original tongue and groove floor.
Front Porch Extras:

This enamel top table was found in an antique store.  Although the enamel surface was in terrific shape, the painted part of the table needed some help.  We noticed that the color of the blue on the table perfectly matched the original Napoleonic Blue Chalk Paint® that we already had in our paint supply.  We used Pure White Chalk Paint® on the rest of the painted part of the table to complement the enamel top.  

This bench was my grandmother’s organ bench.  I can still remember her sitting at this bench and stretching to reach the pedals of the organ as she played.  (She was 4’11” at her tallest.) Although the organ is long gone, I saved the bench. Her favorite color was blue, and I think the Louis Blue Chalk Paint® on her organ bench would make her smile.  

This stool was my husband’s grandmother’s piano stool.  He can still remember sitting (and twirling) on the stool for Wednesday night dinners with his family at Grandma’s house.  Although the piano is long gone, we saved the stool. His grandmother’s favorite color is also blue, and I know that seeing this stool in Louis Blue Chalk Paint® makes her smile.  She has visited our house and sat on our porch.  She is 96 years young; bless her heart.  

The front door is original to the house.  It was painted with red latex paint, and it was peeling, of course.  After removing the hardware and scraping off the loose paint, we painted it with Honfleur Chalk Paint®.

The spindles, railings, and risers of our stairs are all painted with the previous version of Old White Chalk Paint®.  With a lot of elbow grease as well the paint from The Purple Painted Lady, our front porch is far more welcoming.

Here is the porch 1 year after painting.  It still looks wonderful. Please excuse the layer of springtime pollen that has settled over the floor and furniture.    
Back Porch Before:

When we purchased our house, the back porch was also painted in latex paint that was, you guessed it, peeling.  
Back Porch Preparation and Results:

Unfortunately, I did not take as many photographs of the back porch project.  For the old beadboard that covers 3 walls, we scraped, primed, and painted. For the cedar shingles, we scraped, spackled holes, and painted.  All of these were painted with the original Napoleonic Blue Chalk Paint®.  For the beadboard ceiling and trim, we again scraped, primed, and painted using the previous version of Old White Chalk Paint®.  Please notice the red jelly cupboard.  It is one of the first items that I painted using Chalk Paint®.  You may have already guessed that it is Emperor’s Silk Chalk Paint®; the color is the version that was available in the quart containers.  
Back Porch Extras:

To add some of the warmth of wood to our back porch, we covered an existing support piece with cedar boards.  Our patch collection now hangs on it. We also replaced the old red door with this 1930’s solid wood door. We used Clear Shellac as that is what was already on the door when we received it.  The color of the trim around the cedar covered support and the door is the previous version of Old White Chalk Paint®.

This tin quilt square is made of 9 ceiling tiles that we purchased from The Purple Painted Lady.  The tiles were first coated in a layer of Clear Shellac, then they were painted using the previous version of Old White Chalk Paint® and Emperor’s Silk Chalk Paint® from the quart containers.  My husband hand painted the tiles with both colors on them.  
Thank you to all of the helpful, cheerful workers at The Purple Painted Lady.  They have answered all of my questions and problem solved with me many times through the porch projects.  You might think that after all of that painting, I might be ready for a little break from painting. However, I am already making a list of new projects and the new colors that I would like to try.  After all, summer is here, and what would summer be without many trips to my favorite store? ~ Carrie


Trish always shares, “first- if you have a local stockist- go visit them and build a relationship with them.  Go to them with your questions and project issues.”  BUT- if you do not have a local stockist- we invite you to try our customer service!As for buying any of the products we mentioned earlier in this post- I hope that you select The Purple Painted Lady® to be your one stop resource!  We have two locations in western NY.  Check out our Information tab and come and meet us!  Otherwise- if you are not located near me- the following information may apply to you.   This information is directed to those who do NOT have a local stockist.  Because if you do – go and meet them, shop from them and build a relationship with them. The guidance, information and knowledge they share with you – will be invaluable.  Get inspired by their shop that they lovingly curated – just for you!   Enjoy that one on one experience!   But for those who are in a location where there is no one selling paint products- and you must buy on-line- consider us.  With that said, visit to find a stockist near you. We are here to help you, our customers!  We want you to be successful!   SOME OF THE REASONS WE THINK THE PURPLE PAINTED LADY® CUSTOMER SERVICE IS THE BEST: *  We love our customers and it shows!*  Ordering online?  If you order before 3 pm EASTERN TIME any day Monday thru Friday – we will ship out your package that SAME day.   We ship orders out every since week day all over the US.  (THIS IS DIFFERENT than SAME DAY DELIVERY. We do not offer that)*  We offer low flat rate UPS shipping cost so if you are one town away or 10 states away- the shipping cost is the same.*  We have awesome follow up customer service, too!*  We sell Chalk Paint® for $34.95 SHOP ON LINE HERE  : )  And I will be here to help you as you progress through your future project!  And if I do say so myself- we offer the BEST customer service that you will ever experience!  Lastly- if I was helpful to you- ….please consider leaving a positive review on my Facebook business page sharing your positive experience or thoughts about The Purple Painted Lady®.  Here is a link to my Facebook page=>    This really helps me!  (wink, wink!)

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