duvall house foyer wall scraped
Museum, Summer

Recipe for Chalk Paint

This is the chalk paint Terri mixed up that’s working such wonders in the Duvall House:


  • 1 cup flat or eggshell latex paint
  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1/3 cup Plaster-of-Paris


  • Stir together warm water & Plaster-of-Paris. (Add more water or plaster to thin or thicken the mixture, as needed). No lumps.
  • Pour into paint and mix thoroughly.


  • 1:3 Plaster-of-Paris to paint.
  • Keep paint stirred, with lid on when not in use.
  • Use stiff bristle brush; chalk brush recommended.
  • Scrape peeling paint and flakes prior to application; wall surface does not have to be smooth.
  • Apply paint in a circular motion; goal is to work the paint mixture into wall surface.

** Chalk paint has 101 uses. Do a Google search. You’ll be amazed…

Terri beginning scraping paint
Very poor lighting but Terri is just about to get started scraping the mint green paint that hasn’t flaked or peeled off yet.

~ Debbie M.

duvall house
Museum, Summer

Chalk Paint

The Duvall House was built in 1928. It was moved from the farm to the Museum site prior to the Town of Cut Knife’s Centennial in 2012. The house needed some maintenance work and a few upgrades before it was ready for the public, and a fresh coat of paint was high on the list. The walls were filled and sanded; colours were selected to reflect the time period; the house interior was painted. Then came winter.

The upgrades did not include winter heating and the freeze / thaw cycle over the next few years were not kind to the paint. A number of different treatments were tried with varying degrees of success but still the paint peeled and flaked – until Terri suggested chalk paint. Chalk paint is a mixture of plaster-of-paris, warm water, and latex paint. It’s applied with a chalk brush and is worked into the existing wall plaster.

A test wall a few years ago proved to be very encouraging. So, this past Labour Day weekend, Terri and I set to scraping and painting the Duvall House front entrance. The results have been amazing! We’ll be checking it out closely next spring and if there’s no sign of deterioration, be prepared to see a call out for volunteer painters!

A few photos:

duvall house foyer wall scraped
Flaking mint green paint removed exposing the previous rose colour.

mixing the chalk paing
Terri preparing the paint. Note the two chalk brushes closest to the brown jars.

duvall house wall first coat
First coat of mint green over the previous paint.

duvall house wall 2 coats, crayon covered
Second coat of mint green paint even covers the wax crayon scribbles!

duvall house, 2 coats, pictures up
Picture returned to the wall. Mission accomplished.

Coming soon… the recipe for Chalk Paint!

~ Debbie M.


Summer, Beautiful Summer

The summer has been a lovely one. Early mornings are bright with sunshine and promise of warm enticing afternoons.

The museum is humming along with a hired manager this year. It is so nice to have someone look after the everyday running of it. Our two student staff members have also been very busy re-finishing hardwood floors in our buildings. The buildings look great! And it helps to freshen up the smell in them too.

Time gets eaten up at the museum.

Every time I go to the museum to try and get a project completed, something else presents itself that needs immediate attention.

Yesterday was no exception. I was going to put up the curtains in the living room of the Duvall House, but needed an innovative fix for the period curtain rod that I wanted to use. I went looking in all the nooks and crannies that things hide there and made a hair-raising discovery that had nothing to do with hanging window coverings. Exciting, hair-raising discovery.

Very significant, historical tapes that I had no idea were on the museum site.

More on this later. Suffice it to say that the past keeps popping up in Clayton’s Collection. What insight he had in the research that he did 40 to 50 years ago.

Now back to the curtains that need some sewing adjustments for length and I still don’t have a fix for the rod. Gonna have to work on my sewing and carpentry skills. Or better yet, volunteer recruitment?

~ Lucille B.