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FIND the Chalk Paint everyone’s raving about

Her love affair with Chalk Paint started with simply wanting to refresh some furniture she had bought for her own home, but it has since grown into Katrina Barclay’s passion-driven business. Katrina had just moved to Ottawa from the Netherlands, where upcycling – the practice of transforming objects to extend their lifespan – is big. She stumbled upon the UK-based Annie Sloan’s revolutionary Chalk Paint and it was love at first brush stroke.

“I became so enamoured with the results, I decided I didn’t want to do anything else with my life,” admits Katrina. “After refinishing pieces for our home I kept buying and working on others which I sold on Kijiji. I couldn’t believe the demand and that’s what led to the opening of Malenka Originals, first in Britannia and now on Wellington West.”

Think you’re not crafty enough to upcycle? Think again, says Katrina. Annie Sloan’s easy, versatile products not only give a rich, velvety glow to any wood, but Chalk Paint can also be applied without the need to sand or strip first even over old varnishes, waxes, latex or oil paints. It adheres beautifully to wood, fabric, linoleum, plastic, metal and even melamine kitchen cupboards. Chalk Paint is ultra-low VOC so it’s no problem to use indoors; it also offers such fast turnaround that you can paint a piece in the morning, wait an hour, then wax and put it back in position by the afternoon.

Katrina describes upcycling as being ‘delightfully addictive’ and her Instagram feed is proof of the transformative results of this easy and inexpensive process. “In a world where furniture isn’t always made to last, it feels great to refresh pieces to give them a second or third life.”

At Malenka you’ll find more than just tools for upcycling – you’ll also find loads of inspiration, in the form of expert guidance, step-by-step workshops and more. It’s easy to give the gift of a new look, explains Katrina, with gift certificates for classes or custom in-house refinishing services, boxed gift sets, Annie Sloan books and more.

And in case you’re wondering, the name of the shop is an homage to Katrina’s grandfather Daniel Skibo, a renowned antique restorer and master French polisher. “He used to call me ‘Malenka’, which means ‘little one’ in Ukrainian. I like to think that he would be really proud of what we are doing here to extend the life and enjoyment of furniture.”

For more fresh FINDs from Wellington West, check back here every Tuesday!

Keyword tags: WWBIA, Wellington West, Ottawa, shop, upcycle, restore, furniture, renew, refresh, DIY, Annie Sloan, Chalk Paint, workshops, tools, supplies, gift certificates, refresh, local, community, Hintonburg