By Amy McGeachy, DID

A little DIY can go a long way in an interior space. I am a huge fan of reviving and repurposing existing furniture pieces or accessories to make them relevant and usable in your space. They often carry a story and history to them, making your interior design an interesting and interactive experience.

While visiting one of my favorite shops this week for an episode of Trend, I experimented with a chalk paint product. The line that The Old Attic carries is Country Paint. There are other well known brands on the market such as Fat Paint and Annie Sloan, but today this was my product of choice. My goal was to change the look of a tired old nightstand, and get some ideas to create interesting accessories for another project.

Chalk paint is a wonderful invention. It is a water-based clay product, which washes up easily and requires little, to no preparation of the existing surface. The paint can be applied over many materials to create a completely different look. We used stencils and texture compounds to transform old cabinet doors into creative wall hangings. The nightstand looks amazing with just one coat of paint and a wax finish to seal the surface. There are many stenciling techniques that can be applied with gel compounds. These add texture and interest, giving the piece individuality and creating a unique presence in the room. There are many different patterns available to suite your project ranging from many interesting French motifs to birds, bees and every animal under the sun. Another favorable look is the distressed country techinique, which highlights the moldings and crevices. To carry out this process, you apply your paint color and apply waxes to the surface leaving the wax in the corners and cracks. You get a more dramatic effect depending on how much of a contrast is between the base color and the color of the wax. Some other techniques include crackling and rubs.

Watch Trend this season on Chek to see some of these techniques demonstrated. The great news is that if you create a less than desirable result the first time around, it is simple to paint over and start again! No pressure to be perfect.

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