Tuesday, September 23, 2014

DIY Chalkboards

I'd been on the hunt for a few chalkboards to hang around my house and couldn't come up with anything I loved.  Hobby Lobby had a few options but they were around $75 and others that I found were so small.  I took matters into my own hands, made a trip to Goodwill & Wal-mart and ended up with two chalkboards that I LOVE!!

Here's how:
1. Head to your local thrift shops and check out their framed "artwork"
My store hangs their frames all of the store so I had to make a few trips around the place before I saw everything.  Take them down off the wall and examine the frame for good condition, size and make sure they are what you want.  I found my large frame fro $10 and the small one for $4.  $14 total and the people at Goodwill insisted on loading them for me.  Hooray!

2. Pick up spray paint for the frame and chalkboard spray paint at Wal-Mart.  Each was under $4 and I was SO HAPPY with the results and would definitely use Rust-oleum products again.  I also bought a role of blue scotch painter's tape.

3. Clean your pictures.  Wipe them down really well once you get home and are ready to get started.  If it's possible to take the frame apart, do it because it'll be easier to paint the pieces separately.  The larger frame that I selected was professionally framed so I ended up leaving in one piece to paint.  It was definitely doable but I had to be really careful when I was painting.

My frames with slightly hideous artwork BEFORE:

I painted the frames first and taped off the glass.

I removed the paper about 5 minutes after the frames were done being sprayed.  It came out really easily and did the job perfectly.  Go with several light coats of paint instead of really heavy ones.  The spray paint tends to drip and pool if you use too much at a time.

I let the frames dry overnight and then taped off the frame in preparation for the chalkboard paint.

On day two of my painting project, I had a toddler helper.
She was eager to get close so I had to watcher her like a hawk.  I tried to distract her with toys but my project was much more entertaining.  Go figure.

Spray the chalkboard paint in several coats.
If you can't take your frame apart, be very careful when you are spraying the chalkboard paint.  Hold the can close to the glass and watch out for any spray for go onto your frame.  I had to do a little touch up painting on the frame afterwards.

I opted to take my smaller frame apart so it would be easier to spray.  In the future, I'd try to select frames that can be easily disassembled.  I just loved the size and shape of the larger frame so I made it work.

Let chalkboard paint dry overnight.
Then grab your chalk and prime your board.
Coat the whole surface with chalk and wipe off.
Then it'll be ready to go for you.

I wanted Olive's library nook in her bedroom to have its own sign.
I've been talking about writing out the ND football schedule for a while 
and this board worked out perfectly for it.

The project cost about $24 for both chalkboards!
I definitely would have had to pay triple that for retail chalkboards.


  1. Great tutorial! Your chalkboards turned out so cute!

  2. This is a great project, I love it!! I am definitely going to try it. Found you on Polkadots on Parade xoxo

  3. These are great! When we decorate our next place, I am defiantly making some of these. I love how you put the football schedule on the big one. Also, your daughter is so cute!
    Thanks for linking up with WYWW :)

  4. I have yet to jump on the chalkboard band wagon but I am so tempted after seeing the football schedule! How neat!
    Shelia @ House of Highlands

  5. What a cutie patootie your little one is!!…..and what a great price for two big chalkboards and a little elbow grease. The color of the frames is so fun too. Thanks for sharing your how-to at the Best of the Nest party!! Please join us again, we'd love to have you!


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