Learn how to paint buffalo plaid easily on wood with some chalk paint and painter’s tape. Watch a video tutorial on how I updated a thrift store find!
I have a little confession… I have hopped on the buffalo plaid train big time! I love it and have decided to turn my family room into a buffalo check themed room.
One of the first things I learned to do was how to paint buffalo plaid on wood and I wanted to show you how easy it is!
I found this tray at Good Will so the best part of this buffalo plaid decor project is that it was super cheap.
A tip on strolling through a thrift store… you need to have an open mind of what things could be, not what they are.
You can throw some chalk paint on almost anything to spruce it up, all you have to do is have some imagination.
We have a pretty big Goodwill here in town that I like to visit every month or so. I found some pretty great hidden treasures this time.
I ended up putting a few of these things back, but I’m so excited about the projects I have going on with the others.
Pillows are a great find at thrift stores! They are so much cheaper than buying pillow forms at craft stores.
Trays are another amazing find. You can do so many things with trays and I was in luck on this trip. I found this wood tray for $3!
How to Paint Buffalo Plaid Tips
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Chalk paint is perfect for this thrift store makeover! Chalk paint works on everything without having to sand or prep.
A few tips on how to paint buffalo check before we get started:
- I ended up painting three layers of white chalk paint on to coat it completely. Make sure to sand it in between coats. I forgot to sand after my last one and I think that was one of the causes for some of the bleeds.
- Make sure to press the tape firmly down. Use a brayer or scraper to make sure it has fully adhered. This will help to get crisper lines.
- I didn’t have any black chalk paint, so I used black acrylic paint for my last layer. It sticks great to chalk paint!
- If you want the tray to have a distressed look, you can sand the edges to get some of the white paint off. Sand as much or little as you want! No rules for this part.
- I touched up all the colors with small paintbrushes if the lines weren’t crisp, but that is optional.
- You can make any surface buffalo plaid with this painting technique. The Dollar Tree usually has some great large pieces of wood for different seasons that you can easily paint. Think buffalo check pumpkins as part of your fall decor or buffalo check plaid Christmas tree signs!
Since taking pictures while I’m painting is not easy, I decided to make you a video on how to paint buffalo plaid to show you better. Make sure to check it out at the bottom of the blog post.
If you like printable directions, I have you covered! Click on the print button in the card.
- Paint Brushes
- Paint your entire tray with white chalk paint (or whatever base color you want). Let dry an hour. Lightly sand over whole tray. Paint on another layer. Repeat with more coats of paint if needed.
- The first thing to do is to tape off the inside edges of your tray if you have any.
- Then we are going to make the vertical stripes. Measure your board (one way) and make a mark in the center of the board. I used 1.5 inch painter's tape, so after I marked the middle, I marked 0.75 inch on either side.
- I used a wood board piece that was 1.5 inch or alternatively if you have a ruler that is 1.5 inch to draw straight lines. I placed the board in between the two marks and drew vertical lines up and down the board.
- The next step is to place a strip of painter's tape in the middle of the two lines. Place the board up against the first piece of tape and draw another straight line. Again line up the tape against the line and press it firmly in place. Keep doing that all the way across.
- Paint over all the white paint with gray paint.
- Carefully remove the tape, set it aside to use later (leaving the tape on the inside edges), and let the paint dry for at least an hour.
- Once it's dry, measure the center of the board going the other way for the horizontal stripes. Again, place a strip of painter's tape directly in the center. Either place a board, ruler, piece of tape, or measure 1.5 inches away and place another strip of tape. Continue both ways with horizontal lines until you get to the edge.
- Paint over the white with gray paint. Leave the tape ON and let it dry for at least an hour.
- Once it's dry, put the strips of tape you set aside back on the board exactly where they were before. So, they will be covering up some gray lines. It can be a little tricky to see edges!
- Paint the squares that are not covered by tape with black paint. I used acrylic.
- Once everything is painted, remove all the tape!
- Let the buffalo check pattern dry and then touch up any pencil marks or bleed through marks with a small paint brush. If you are a perfectionist like me, this might take 5-10 minutes using white, gray, and black to make sure the lines are pretty straight.
- Once it's all dry, apply a layer of clear wax or polyacrylic sealer. Let fully dry. Sand edges or any part if you want a distressed look.
Watching the video below is probably the easiest way to understand all these steps!
Not too hard, right?? I love how my tray came out and especially love that I can use it all year round, not just for Christmas.
I can use the painted buffalo plaid tray for any holiday season and in any room of my house!
Perfect spot to put my remotes that always seem to get lost in my living room or to carry out drinks in my dining room.
As part of my buffalo plaid decor for Christmas, I made some pillows out of the ones I told you I got from Goodwill. I made a few with buffalo check fabric that I picked up at Joann’s.
If you’d like to read my tutorial on how to make your own Rae Dunn Christmas pillows plus get my FREE SVG cut file, click on the link!
Or if you want to make your family or friends a family mug set or matching PJs with this free deer SVG set, click here to download.
While you’re at it, make sure you check out my roundup of 60 Hot Chocolate recipes to fill the mugs with (click on link)!!
If you love making Christmas decorations, make sure sure to check out my ultimate guide to DIY Christmas decor.
If you’d like to save this tutorial on painting buffalo plaid for later, hover over the top left of the image below and PIN it!
Thanks so much for stopping by! Have a creative day!