In 1974, Charles Thibeau, the
founder of The Old Fashioned Milk Paint Company, also
founded The Country Bed Shop to make exact reproductions
of early American Colonial furniture as can be seen in
such places as Winterthur, Shaker Villages, Metropolitan
Museum of Art, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Philadelphia
Museum of Art, Old Sturbridge Village and The Shelburne
In order to get the authentic look of some early
pencil-post beds, six-board chests, and Windsor chairs,
he began to experiment with different formulas in an
attempt to recreate the milk paint used extensively to
paint furniture, walls and toys in early America. In
1974, he was interviewed for Yankee Magazine's series of
books on "forgotten arts". This interview brought home
the realization that a widespread interest existed among
craftsman for this kind of finish and, "Voila". The Old
Fashioned Milk Paint Co., Inc. was born.
For the expertise demonstrated in his recreations, he
was elected in 1981 to the membership in the Guild of
Master Craftsmen in London.
Along with an abiding interest in craftsmanship,
Thibeau always had a deep-seated concern for the
environment. In 1970, he founded the N.F.E.C. (National
Foundation for Environmental Control, Inc.), and was involved in the first Earth Day in Boston.
He knew that the early Americans, and the Europeans
before them, made their paint with only natural
materials. This fact and the ongoing concern for a
healthy environment has always directed his search for
just the right mix of ingredients for milk paint and
other safe finishing materials.
We are sad to say that Charles passed away in the spring of 2012 at the age of 84. He was an inspiration to those who knew him, and will be greatly missed. We are very proud of his legacy and his vision to re-introduce milk paint back into the modern world in an easy to use, powder form.