Painting a Footlocker Trunk with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

I love my Mom.  Totally adore her.  She really is one of the sweetest people ever created and she believes I can pretty much do anything.  So when she borrowed my favorite book, Country Living’s Decorating with White and left a sticky note with an arrow pointing to the footlocker trunk that read, “You can do this, right?” I literally laughed out loud.  I don’t see these old trunks in my price range.  They’re not in the old barns or junky warehouses I shop at.  They’re usually in antique stores because someone else has been lucky enough to scoop them up.  As luck would have it, a few weeks later I happened upon a footlocker steamer trunk and decided surprise her with it.


The trunk I found has a lot of great details like leather trim and brass tacks.


The inside is just as cool.  Take a look at that herringbone pattern, swoon.


The hardware is a little rusted but it’s in an “I’ve been on lots of adventures” rusted kind of way.


I started out by taping off the trim and detail pieces with the Frog Tape we were given in our “swag bags” at the Haven conference.


Next, I primed the body using two coats of Zinsser primer.


After the primer was dry, I used two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White allowing for adequate drying time in between coats.  When the Chalk Paint had dried, I used 220 grit sandpaper and sanded the body of the trunk.  Then I coated with clear paste wax but you could also use polyacrylic as well.


I gave the leather trim a little oil rub because it was looking pretty thirsty.


I surprised my Mom last Friday with the trunk and she was super excited.  I can’t wait to show you guys what room we decided to use it in!


Many blessings,




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  1. Great…now where am I gonna find an old streamer trunk? You have totally made me want to create a trunk of my very own! Great job from a very thoughtful daughter 🙂

    1. I will be on the lookout for you lady! Thank you for your sweet words my friend!

  2. Liz Bonin says:

    Lovely job as always! Can’t wait to see where it ended up!❤️

    1. Thanks so much sweet friend!

  3. Renee @ The Refined Relic says:

    I love this before and after. Your mom has a great eye to want this trunk in her space and a talented daughter who helped tranform it into something beautiful. Great job.

    1. Such kind words Renee, thank you! She really seems excited about it!

  4. Be still my heart! LOVE vintage travel trunks and this one looks beautiful <3 Bwg ~~~

    1. I love them too Bobbi but they are so hard to find down here. I am always on the lookout!

  5. WOWSER! I see these a lot while thrifting but they usually look completely wrong for my space. WHO KNEW YOU COULD PAIN THEM??? I’m so excited now. 🙂

    PS: what oil rib do you use for the leather??? I need to do this to some purse straps but don’t want to ruin them.


    1. I was a little worried to paint this one to be honest. I wasn’t really sure how the paint would take to the leather but I think she’s really excited about the way it all came together. I will send you an email of the recipe I use for the leather.

  6. Wow! It’s beautiful and I’m so glad you found one to surprise your mom with. I’m sure she thinks you’re just as sweet!

    1. Angie, what a sweet thing to say! She is really excited about it and that makes me so happy!

  7. Whoo hoo! This trunk looks fab-tastic, lady! Can you believe I FINALLY got my hands on some A.S. Chalk Paint and I’m going to give it a go next week? Hope mine turns out half as amazing as this here gem. Wish me luck!

    1. Lauren, your projects always turn out so good. I think Annie will be proud you’re giving her paint a try 🙂

  8. Coco, SWOON is right. Wow I haven’t found one either so what a great find that was!! It looks soooo good. Thanks for the great tutorial on what to use. I need to be on the hunt for one too. Looks Fab and I bet your mom is stoked!! xo Lisa

    1. Lisa, they are hard to come by down here but I am always on the lookout too! My Mom is so excited. I hope your able to find one in Cali!

  9. I just love old trunks. I have one in my living room that I found at a thrift store and haven’t been able to part with it. I was going to list it for sale but decided it should stay 🙂 Just too good of a find to sell. Yours is great – I’m sure your mom will love it.

    1. I really appreciate it Suzanne, thank you so much. My mom is excited for sure. These trunks are hard to find down here so hang on to yours!

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