How To Make Paint

painting supplies and a hand spreading yellow paint with a roller
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 20-30
What You'll Need
1/2 cup of salt
Dye (pick the exact color you want the paint to be)
A quart of linseed oil
2 cups of Standard Builders Lime (not Quick Lime)
1 gallon of standard skim milk
Electric Mixer
Two Large Buckets
1.5 ounces cool water
4 ounces baking soda
Mixing bowl
8 ounces latex paint
Spatula or wooden spoon
Flour Paint:
16 ounces cold tap water
16 ounces flour
2 Mixing bowls
Stock pot
12 ounces tap water
16 ounces cold tap water
8 ounces screened clay filler
4 ounces powder filler (mica or iron sulfate)
Shaving cream
Muffin tin
Food coloring
Dried markers

Paint is a versatile material used for countless DIY and home improvement projects. With that being said, it can be not only costly to purchase paint time after time, but it can also be jarring to purchase paint where you’re not sure what’s in it. Even if you can read the ingredient list, there will likely be items in the recipe for store bought paint that you’re not quite sure what it is.

That could be reason for concern, as you probably don’t want unknown chemicals in and around your home. You are probably also looking for something that’s safe for the environment. In order to create paint that’s eco-friendly and easy on the wallet, you can follow a wealth of recipes to make your own. Keep in mind, though, that each type of paint demands a different ingredient list, as paint that covers your walls is undoubtedly much different than paint that kids would use on their artwork.

How to Make Wall Paint

It’s pretty easy to make wall paint, requiring only a few simple ingredients and easy steps to mixing it. First, pour half a cup of salt, the desired color dye, a quart of linseed oil, two cups of Standard Builders Lime (not Quick Lime) and a gallon of skim milk together. Mix them thoroughly. This is most easily done with an electric mixer for about ten minutes until the consistency is completely smooth. Finally, use a cheesecloth to strain the mixture. Be sure to use the paint within 48 hours of mixing it before it dries out.

painting a drawer with chalk paint

How to Make Chalk Paint

Chalk paint is best used on furniture and can be easily made. This paint can be used for a myriad of projects involving furniture and is suitable for giving pieces an aged, distressed look. Start by mixing one and a half ounces of cool water into a mixing bowl. This works best with tap water that’s below room temperature. Add four ounces of baking soda to the bowl.

Stir this mixture with a wooden spoon or spatula until smooth. You will need to mix it thoroughly until all of the baking soda has dissolved. Next, pour this mixture into eight ounces of latex paint in the color of your choosing. Stir these substances together until they’re completely combined.

Use this paint right away and it’ll give furniture a chalky and distressed appearance. Allow the paint to dry on furniture for at least one day. Either store leftover paint in an airtight container if you wish to save it or, if you wish to dispose of it, leave it in an open container. It will dry within a few days, at which point it can be safely thrown out.

How to Make Flour Paint

Flour paint is another type of homemade wall paint. This type of paint provides a matte finish and is long lasting after its applied and dries. Start by mixing 16 ounces of cold tap water into a mixing bowl. Add 16 ounces of flour into the water, stirring it until the consistency is smooth. Next, boil 12 ounces of water in a pot on the stove. Once the water boils, lower the heat and stir the flour and water mixture you created into the boiling water. Stir the solution continuously with a whisk until it turns into a paste - typically three to five minutes. Once this occurs, remove the pot from the heat. You’ll want this mixture to be thick, and it should stay on the stove until that consistency is reached.

Now, pour 16 ounces of cold water into the paste slowly. As you pour, continually mix the paste. This will thin the paste out to become to consistency of traditional paint. Now, give your paint color by combining eight ounces of screened clay filler with four ounces of a powder filler such as mica or iron sulfate in a separate bowl. Once mixed, add this material to the paste slowly, continually stirring again. Mix until the color is even. The paint will then be ready for use. Apply it to walls with a regular paint brush as you would any latex or oil paint.

blue and green colored shaving cream like paint

How to Make Shaving Cream Paint

This type of paint is great for kiddos to use. It is washable, so it can be painted onto glass (like windows or sliding glass doors) and then washed off completely. To make it, simply put a squirt of shaving cream into a container. If you’re making multiple colors, use a muffin tin to separate them. Mix a few drops of food coloring with the shaving cream until it’s evenly spread. It’s as easy as that! Grab a brush and let your kiddo paint until their heart’s content.

How to Make Watercolor Paint

Watercolor paints can be used for many projects, whether you’re a kid of an adult. An easy trick to making these calls for a common household product that can be upcycled. Find some markers in your home that are dried up. This is your opportunity to get more use out of them! Using small jars, pour water into as many as you have marker colors. Uncap the markers and drop them into the water, allowing the color to bleed into them, If you have multiple markers of one color, place them all in the same jar to produce a vibrant watercolor.

Take the markers out of the jars and discard them. Cap the jars and put them in a dry, safe place. Leave them for about a week, allowing the colors to become more concentrated. Over this time, some water will evaporate, so put enough in the jar to account for that at the beginning of the project. After about a week, you’ll have vibrant, homemade watercolors to use in your art projects.

These paints are easy to make as well as inexpensive, making them the perfect project to kick-off a home improvement venture.