Aging Wood using Chalky Paint

| |

Sharing helps others too!


True barn wood is expensive!

Arizona has few barns.

I love old barns.  Back in my disposable camera days, I wanted to buy a disposable camera for, “only take pictures of barns.” Yep, I said that out loud, not just a thought, right out loud for Mike to hear.

When we walk past a display of disposable cameras he offers to buy one for me to take all those barn pictures.  In the meantime, I’ll be busy figuring out tips to paint new wood to look like barn wood.

Three easy ways for aging wood using chalky paint.


This is a plain piece of pine wood from our local home improvement store.  I want it to look like old barn wood.  After a couple of attempts, this tutorial is the best results and with a simple tip, easy to do.

My disclaimer:  This post has affiliate links.  If you wish to purchase a product mentioned, you can click on the link and make your purchase.  You would pay the same as if purchasing directly from the retailer, but by using the link, I do receive a small amount for adding the link to my website.  This helps offset the costs of blogging. 🙂


The tip comes first…

Mix your favorite wood color of chalk-based paint with water.  I used 3 parts water to 1 part chalky paint.  Stir well.  Apply completely over the wood.  Paint on the watered down paint heavily.  The watered paint will soak down into the layers of wood. Let dry.  Above I used American in Rustic color.

This gives a base of aged color to new wood.

Now we need to add aged layers to the wood.



The easiest way I found is to dry brush.  Dry brushing is adding a small amount of paint to the brush and then removing most of the paint on a paper towel.  Then brush across the wood going with the grain.  {lines of the wood}  The paint will catch in the grain and edges of the wood.

Above I dry brushed with a CeCe Caldwell black chalk-based paint, then used Americana chalky paint in yesteryear.

Barnwood to aged wood


The next technique was basically the same except that I added black to the watered down paint rustic paint.  So, this would be approximately 1 part black, 3 parts rustic and 9 parts water.  The black darkened the brown to a richer color.


Then I dry brushed the wood with the black chalky paint.



The driftwood gray piece was done by using watered down Americana yesteryear.  One part paint to three parts water.  Above the wood is very wet.  The paint is even pooling in the top left corner.  That’s fine.  Let it soak up and dry.


The dry brushing was done on this board using more of the yesteryear color and white.

Learn my how to tip to turn new wood to barnwood using chalky paint. DIY that's easy. country design style

Another tip for painting projects to look old and layered is to let the paint dry a little as your painting.  This work well with chalk-based paints.  So I wouldn’t ruin my paint I would pour the amount needed for the project into a cup.  Let the paint dry a little and then dry brush with a slightly “clumpy” paint.  This technique does require a bit of practice.  Do try it on scrap wood first.


I’m starting to like using chalk-based paints!


My sample pieces of wood were pretty smooth.  No knots or rough grain.  A rougher piece of wood will look even more distressed and aged.

DIY help bonuses and printables

Check the cornerstone post on how to distress wood.

Join the newsletter

Subscribe to get our DIY HelpLetter each Thursday. Plus grab your Interior Decorating Ideas e-book.

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

Similar Posts


  1. This is great. I recently bought chalk paint. ..but I didn’t know how I was going to use it. Now I have some idea. Thank.

    1. Sally, you’re going to love using chalk paint in many ways. Thanks for stopping by! Let me know what you paint. Jeanette

  2. Can’t wait to try yet another brilliant technique from you! I have just the project to use this on!!

  3. chris aka monkey says:

    nice post and the different looks are great choices…. i have been having lumbar problems and am having back surgery to release squeezed nerve so sitting or standing or laying ha ha will be hard for a while don’t worry i will be fine but maybe just not commenting etc for a while xx

    1. Oh Chris, take care of yourself and check in just to give me updates on how you’re feeling as you can. Hugs and heating pads! Jeanette

Leave a Reply