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Walk through my first experience with milk paint and learn the mistakes I made and some tips for beginners
Walk through my first experience with milk paint and learn the mistakes I made and some tips for beginners

Hi, my name is Amy and I am a Pinterest junkie…. Does anyone else feel there should be a support group for those like myself! Haha! So I had been scrolling through Pinterest as one does at 8 pm on a Friday night in my yoga pants watching Netflix! (I know I am not the only one! Right?? Right?!?!) I was looking up paint ideas for furniture projects and stumbled upon some pins mentioning milk paint.

Now I had heard of chalk paint although never worked with it but always thought of it as similar to chalkboard paint. But with the word “milk” in this type of paint, needless to say, I was intrigued. Just the name of it sounded cool, so I began to ponder; Is it made with milk? How does this differ from other paint? What does it look like after finished?

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So I did some research on Pinterest I discovered Marian at Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint and fell in love with her blog. She explains that milk paint has been around forever, is all natural and made with five ingredients! It can be used on any type of surface although on some surfaces it may resist adhesion and flake giving you a chippy look. At this point, I am hooked and ready to try it out! But being the frugal self that I am I don’t want to get the product and then hate the way looks so luckily I found that sample packs are available in most colors.

Milk Paint: A Beginner's Perspective

I was super excited when the milk paint arrived. It is different from other paint in that it comes as a dry mixture. Add water and you will create your paint. Another awesome perk in my book since I can make as little or as much as I want at a time depending on my project requirements.

The first trial of Milk Paint

I found this rustic stool at Goodwill for $0.99! I knew when I bought it that I was going to paint the seat so then when I stumbled upon milk paint I knew it would be the perfect first project.

Thrift shop bar stool for $0.99! Already has a rustic, used look to the legs, updating the seat with milk paint

So here comes my confession time, in my haste to use the milk paint I didn’t carefully follow directions, even though I had watched the Youtube tutorial. I didn’t measure equal parts of water to paint powder and ended up with too much water. Unfortunately, I had used the entire sample packet so I didn’t have any more powder to added to the water to thicken. At this point, I figured let’s just go for it and see what happens. The first picture below is my first coat and the second picture is my second coat. As you can see not very pretty at all!

My first attempt at milk paint and I added way too much water
Second coat of milk paint and you can see the water spots

Second Time’s a Charm

So after my failed first attempt, I ordered two more samples of Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint and this time I was going to follow directions to a tee! I took a sander (this one is my favorite) to the stool and removed all of the other paint until it was back to bare wood. I also re-watched their Youtube video about mixing the paint. Per their suggestion, I mixed together equal parts of paint powder to water. I could immediately tell that I would need more water so I added a trickle several times until I had a consistency similar to pancake batter as they mention.

Milk Paint mixture ready to apply to thrift store stool

The color I chose for the stool was Layla’s Mint by Miss Mustard Seed. And this time it went on beautifully as you can see from the picture below.

First application of Miss Mustard Seed milk paint on a trift store bar stool

Because the stool was painted on bare wood this did not need a second coat as milk paint has great adhesion to most wood surfaces.


So after using milk paint for the first time, I have highlighted some of my pros and cons:

Pros of Milk Paint

  • Comes in powder form so you only need to mix as much as you want at a time
  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • It is environmentally friendly, non-toxic and low odor
  • Can be stored forever in its powder state
  • Doesn’t require a lot of prep work

Cons of Milk Paint

  • Once mixed cannot be stored as it will harden and spoil
  • Depending on the project may not be the best choice
  • Can be more costly than some latex paints

Material List:

I will definitely be trying milk paint again, next time maybe on a bigger piece of furniture! I love how smooth the finish is just as paint and no other product applied.

Update: I have tried milk paint several more times now and love it! Check out my updated coffee table here.

Miss Mustard Seed also has a line of ” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>waxes and tough coats and also a bonding agent. The bonding agent is for those pieces of furniture that may have a very glossy finish that will allow the paint to adhere well if you aren’t looking for that chippy look. This post is in no way affiliated with Miss Mustard Seed, their product was just one I stumbled upon and was impressed by their knowledgeable website so I decided to try it out.

To finish the stool I took some coarse sandpaper to the top to make it look distressed around the edges a little. And now it is a pretty addition to the living room for my African Violet!

Finished milk paint bar stool

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3 Comments on Milk Paint: A Beginner’s Perspective

    • If I was doing a dresser I would apply some type of top coat. Miss Mustard Seed makes one or any type of poly should work too.

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