Friday, January 4, 2013

CeCe & Annie

So, yesterday I showed you a table refinished using CeCe Caldwell’s Paint in Vintage White.  As promised, I’m giving you the lowdown on my experience with this paint.  Here is the pedestal table that you saw a peek of in the last post

blue 2
CeCe Caldwell’s Paint is an earth friendly, non-toxic, no VOC, chalk and clay paint. {You can read about all of the great benefits of the paint here.}  Not only is it earth friendly {even the packaging is made from recycled materials}, but the color options are really nice.  This pedestal table started out as white painted over oak.  I was hoping for a layered effect so I used 1 coat of Pittsburgh Gray as my base coat and then topped with 1 coat of Smoky Mountain. 

The final color is a smoky blue with more gray tones and not nearly as light/bright as it appears in the picture.

blue 3

quatre chair

I know the number 1 question will be “how does it compare to ASCP?”  Here’s my opinion {for what it’s worth}:
  • Price: {similar} CeCe=$32.95/qt    ASCP=$36.95/qt
  • Availability: {same} Only available through a stockist/retailer
  • Coverage: {similar} Coverage was the same, except for Vintage White (CeCe) vs. Old White (ASCP).  I do feel that ASCP Old White covered better on the first coat but the result was the same after the second coat was applied.
  • Consistency: {different} CeCe is thinner than ASCP and didn’t seem to thicken as I worked with it.  I did not have to add any water, but you are able to with both.
  • Colors: {different} CeCe’s pallet seems to be earth tones while ASCP offers a French color pallet.
  • Mixability: {same} Both paints are easily mixed to offer endless color options
  • Adherence: {similar} Both paints adhere without sanding, stripping or prepping.  However, I stained a few raw wood samples with Danish Oil, wiped it off and then immediately applied both paints.  ASCP adhered fine but CeCe did not.  With that said, I had no problem with CeCe adhering on any furniture pieces.  I don’t know of any time that you would use Danish Oil and then immediately paint {except for making samples} so this should not be an issue.   
  • Dry time: {same} Both dry very quickly, especially when compared to latex.
  • Brush strokes: {same} Both paints are meant to give a hand painted finish and therefore you will see some brush strokes, which I prefer.  {strive for character, not perfection}
  • Ease of distressing: {same} Both distress very easily and sand off into a fine chalky powder  
  • Sealing: {similar options, somewhat different result} Both paints offer the same sealing options and sell specialty waxes.  {I used Minwax Paste Wax instead of the CeCe Caldwell wax for these pieces}  I have to say that I found it easier to wax the CeCe pieces.  Any streakiness upon application disappeared as the wax dried and there was ZERO streakiness after buffing.  NONE at all.  This was not due to the difference in the wax because I have used Minwax on ASCP pieces and not achieved the same results.  This was true for both the white and deeper color pieces.
  • Cleanup: {same} Both can easily be washed out of brushes using only water.  {love that!}
  • Value: {same} Both paints lasted over several pieces so a quart does go a long way.           
Shew…I think that pretty much covers it but let me know if you think of anything I left off!  Overall, I love both paints and will continue to use both paints {and even latex and milk paint}.  Don’t be afraid to branch out and experiment!  You may develop a preference for one or the other {most likely based on their color options} but I think you will be happy with the no prep application and easy distressing that both offer. 

Have you tried both CeCe Caldwell and ASCP?  If so, feel free to share your thoughts!


  1. I use both brands of paint interchangably. In fact, I TYPICALLY use both paints on one piece. I often do this due to the colors I happen to have on hand AND because I like to combo paint most of my pieces. I also happen to like to mix and match a ASCP and a CCC color and use them together one piece.

    On additional comparison, not in your list, that I might add:

    ASCP needs to be distressed using sandpaper while CCC can easily be distressed using a wet towel (within approx. 30 to 60 minutes of painting). THIS IS A REAL BENEFIT!! I personally don't want to sand in my art studio because this is where I paint and I have other artwork in there. This means I have to have help to haul the piece outside to sand. This is not convenient, plus the additional costs of the sandpaper and the sandpaper/sawdust clean up issues.

    Small House / Big Sky Donna / White Oak Studio Designs / SW Michigan

    Hand-Painted Vintage Furniture Transformations


    Facebook: (for portfolio of chalk painted work)

    1. I wet distress Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan all the time! Works like a charm.

      The Empty Nest

  2. Great review and beautiful table! I'd agree with your overall results. At the end of the day, I just like Annie Sloan better. I prefer the color palet, but I also like the consistency and the way it goes on better. I've also tried Maison Blanche paint and like it better than CeCe Caldwell. I have been able to "sand" ASCP off with a wet rag, also.

  3. Thank so much for sharing. You can actually distress both ASCP and CeCe paints with water! I have been planning a tutorial on it but haven't been able to find the time to film it yet. Hopefully soon...

  4. Thank you Cindy for sharing your experience with both paints. I have been wanting to try Cece Caldwell paints for awhile now. I think it's time to dive in!
    You have a lovely blog and we are joining you. I hope you will visit us and join us!

  5. Thanks for the info. I've been using ASCP for quite awhile now, but just purchased my first can of CeCe Caldwell paint and I've been wondering what the difference was going to be. Visiting from MMS Furniture Feature Friday.

  6. That table is really gorgeous! Nice to hear your thoughts on these two paints!

  7. Anonymous1/20/2013

    I have worked with both and prefer CECE's.

    I use a roller and it seems easier to work with (maybe thinner?)

    CECE wax had no issues with streaking of the clear wax. They also carry a satin finish top coat - which I have not tried but would be willing to- on a kitchen table.

    Coverage seems the same. I do at least three coats with white no matter which brand.

    It does seem to get more thick with exposure to air - but it takes longer.

    I would love to see a demo on the wet distress!

    Mid America Mom

    1. MAM - Thank you for the awesome input! The wet distress is my next tutorial whenever I can get a chance to film in daylight.

  8. Can you tell me whether or not you see a difference in color between ASCP Old White and CC Vintage White? I haven't been happy with the color of the Vintage White as it looks yellow to me, especially after waxing. Since there are times when pure white won't do, I am looking for options. I haven't tried ASCP yet. Thanks!

    1. In my opinion, ASCP Old White is actually a creamier, antique white compared to the CC Vintage White. The CC VW seems brighter even after waxing. CC Simply White is a brighter white and may be a good option for you.

    2. Thanks, Cindy. I love the Simply White for most things, but occasionally want a more aged look. I think I will try mixing half and half to see if it cuts down on the yellowish cast.

  9. Yay! I have been looking for the answer to these questions as well as wheather I could use on same piece!
    Your blog has helped me so very much!
    Thank you

  10. What a fantastic comparison. Your table is beautiful.
    About a month ago I decided to paint some furniture I had with chalk paint. An acquaintance of mine had raved about Annie Sloan cp and since I didn't have anywhere close to me that sold it, I researched for it online and while doing so, I found Cece Caldwell paint. So, I started reading reviews between the two paints, hearing both are great and of course people had personal preferences.
    The one thing that swayed me to Cece was that everyone said that it was zero voc's and non toxic. This was said about both the paints and the wax. This is really important to me because I am chemically sensitive!
    Again there were no retailers close to where I live in N. California so I ordered online. I got really excited and lined up several pieces to paint and wax. After my 2nd piece, I felt my fingers were tingling and with the 3rd piece, the tingling turned into burning. The only thing that I was really touching was the wax.
    So I read the can and looked up the ingredients. Carnauba wax is safe, beeswax is safe, linseed oil is not. Raw linseed oil is called flaxseed oil and is not used in furniture wax as it takes forever to dry and doesn't harden. Boiled linseed oil is what is used in furniture waxes and has added solvents / metallic dryers which are indeed toxic!
    I thought I had to share this because I may not be the only one that is chemically sensitive. In fact I think many of the people who choose chalk paint do so because they think it is completely safe. The several pieces I did were for my daughters room and now I am not so sure that the wax is safe for her to be constantly touching, although I am hoping the toxic junk evaporates.
    The pieces look great and were fun to do, but the wax is my concern. I guess you could wear gloves, though it's not the same as being bare fingered. Cece Caldwell should have a warning about linseed oil though. I haven't painted for days and I still feel the tingling.

    1. Actually, we use linseed oil... not boiled linseed oil. :) Just an FYI.

  11. Anonymous6/14/2013

    Excellent review! Now any comparison with American Paint Co. paints??

  12. Anonymous8/20/2013

    I use both Annie Sloan and CeCe paints and as far as the wet sanding goes, you can do CeCe's the following day too, not just within an hour of the paint drying. I just repainted a tabletop with Annie Sloan and when I went to wet sand I had to scrub. I forgot that I grabbed her paint instead of my CeCe paints, I really do need to be more careful next time.

  13. Anonymous6/10/2014

    I boycott American Paint Co. From what I have heard, they used to manufacture CeCe's paints and then took her idea to start their own company. Many CeCe vendors left CeCe to go with American Paint Co. because of their lower price point. CeCe's is a great opportunity, plus I find the finishes much easier to work with than Annies. It's manufactured in America, too.

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  15. Can you use ASCP wax over e CC paint? Just wondered if anyone has mixed the products and if the outcome was ok... I painted my bathroom cabinets with CC, but have ASCP wax. Was trying to avoid buying another wax if I didn't need to...

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