Monday, August 13, 2012

How to Make Your Own Chalkboard: A Tutorial

I have been really wanting a chalkboard! I wanted it to hang in my office to write reminders on. My husband bought me a white erase board and I used it for a while. Until my munchkins broke it, that is. I really just prefer a plain old chalkboard; I guess it's a throwback to my teaching days. I decided to make one myself.

STEP 1: Pick out a picture frame. I selected this frame only because it was already hard surface/frame all-in-one.  If you choose a regular picture frame, you'll simply have to do the following steps on the plywood that's cut to fit the frame you've chosen. I purchased this at Joann's on clearance for $9. It doesn't matter the print on it, it will be covered up.

Step 2: Tape the edges. Since I had an all-in-one hard surface/frame, I taped the edges so the frame would retain the original shiny black and not become part of the chalkboard. If you are using plywood, you'll just skip this step and instead sand down the plywood making sure there are not any rough edges so that the paint will be smooth.

Step 3: Spray a light coat of chalkboard paint onto your board using long consistent strokes in one direction. Be careful not to spray too thick or it will bubble and create a rough surface when dry. Let paint dry for a couple of hours. Spray another coat on going in the opposite grain. Repeat steps until you have completely covered the board. Once you've completed the paint layers, let board dry for 24 hours.

Step 4: You need to prime the paint now. Using chalk, color all surfaces of the board. Make sure you go out to all the edges. I used sidewalk chalk since it's thick and therefore covered more area in less time. Once it's wiped off you'll see it looks more like a chalkboard.

Step 5: Using a soft cloth, wipe off the chalk. You will see the chalkboard/slate clearly now!

Step 6: Place the board into the frame and hang up. You will not need the glass. Make sure to discard of that safely or recycle into another craft project like my What's for Dinner? meal planning freebie. Hang up the frame wherever you desire! Yay!

My daughter loved "supervising" all the steps to this chalkboard. Since you have to wait for the paint to dry it was a process that took a few days to complete. She was really sad when I told her it was for Mommy's office and not for her bedroom. But she did pose happily underneath it for me!

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