I recently reached out to General Finishes to ask for a sample of their milk paint. I’ve always LOVED the projects I’ve seen on Pinterest and decided to give them a try. Within a day of submitting the request form I received a package with two colors and a flat top coat. While I’d been hoping for Driftwood or Coastal Blue or Lamp Black, I got Basil and Linen and was still excited. Linen is a great neutral and Basil is a very pretty sage green. As I use these products on my projects I’ll be giving unbiased reviews based solely on my experiences. I’ll try to use them in as many ways as possible to be able to give as broad a review as possible. (I probably need another paint product general review post again soon!)
Forget everything you know about chalk paint. Milk paint is a whole different ball game. Milk paint is a more natural type of paint that often comes in powdered form and needs to be mixed with water to use. General Finishes comes pre-mixed so it saves you the work. The company suggests using a foam brush (and included two in the sample kit) so I followed instructions, something I’m not known to do all the time, and used a foam brush to paint a thrifted frame I’d just picked up.
Always buy thrift store frames. Frames are so expensive for some reason and they’re so easy to spruce up…why not get them for $1 each at a thrift store and customize? I’ve been selling framed art at my shop like crazy and adding new art to my home so I’m always working on frames.
My first thoughts on General Finishes milk paint are as follows:
It’s very smooth. It dries crazy fast. It’s true to hue. It takes a lot of coats (about 5 for this project to be exact). Even though I needed so many coats to get complete coverage, it didn’t take long because of the rapid drying. As soon as I was done I could start again with a new coat. While needing more than 2 coats usually bugs me, this didn’t seem like such a bother. The smoothness of the paint eliminated any brush marks and the quick drying kept me on pace to finish in just a few minutes. Each coat made a big difference in the coverage, as you can see from my pictures.
While I do like sage green, this seemed just a little dated to me. Maybe it was the dated, yellowish wood of the frame underneath, but I wasn’t loving it immensely. I decided to add some white wax. I brushed a light coat on with my wax brush and blended it. MUCH better. After a little distressing I added a culinary herbs printable I found online and voila! I love this and it goes perfectly in my modern farmhouse kitchen.
A parting thought on General Finishes…if you have a little more patience than I usually do, I’d HIGHLY recommend using this milk paint on furniture projects, especially if you love the color. It’s worth the extra time to get the beautiful sheen, smooth finish, and rich color. I barely touched the pint to finish the frame so I’m pretty confident one pint would go a very long way on a piece of large furniture. Have you tried General Finishes? What are your thoughts?