From what I understand (and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong), Annie Sloan started making chalk paint in the 90's and it is just that. Paint mixed with chalk powder (calcium carbonate). Unfortunately it is hard to find (like not available at all in Idaho) and it is expensive. The website mentions that it costs five and a half Euros (like $10 -- depending on the day) for 100 ml of chalk paint. That's like a sample size!
The paint is thick and covers well. Supposedly there is no need to strip or prime when you use chalk paint. Now if it could be a spray, I'd be all over that! Okay, I already am all over that. I made some the other day and used it on a chair (that I'll share Monday).
Sherry from No Minimalist Here experimented and came up with the recipe for this stuff and in case you haven't read her post, I'll share part of it here.
Chalk is actually Calcium Carbonate and the product can be purchased in health food stores and at numerous on-line stores. The cost is around $4.00 for 12 ounces.
Whiting powder will also give you a similar look for approximately $3.00 for a 1 pound package. I could not find this locally but it is available on-line.
Plaster of Paris also works well and can be purchased at Michaels or Home Depot. Home Depot sells 3 pounds for approximately $6.00.
To get the chalk paint look just add ANY ONE of the above to your latex paint. The amount you use depends on how chalky you want the paint to look when dry. I experimented using the sample size paints and used a ratio of 2/3 paint to 1/3 product. You may need to add a few drops of water to the paint and occasionally stir it if gets too thick.
When I made it, I used Plaster of Paris that I got at The Home depot and mixed it with some light gray paint. It works great and I can attest to the "no priming or sanding necessary" claim.
Again, I'll show you my project on Monday but if you want to go see Sherry's, visit her blog, No Minimalist Here.
Have an awesome day!