For a few years, we had a homemade whiteboard in our dining room for schoolwork. It worked well, but scratched up easily.
After a friend gave me some leftover chalkboard paint she had used for a project, I made a small chalkboard for my shopping list in my kitchen. I painted it on the side of one of my cupboards. The result was both practical and attractive — much more attactive than the badly-scratched whiteboard.
My daughter and I found not only some chalkboard paint at the store, but also some magnetic paint, which we used as a primer. The magnetic paint makes any surface magnetic, so you can use lightweight magnets on it. I’ve found the magnetic paint doesn’t hold up anything too heavy, which isn’t surprising, considering it’s painted on.
Starting off, we used some good quality painter’s tape (invest in the blue kind — it pulls off easier without making a mess), and taped off the area I was going to use as a homemade chalkboard. I sanded the plaster wall until it was fairly smooth. I apparently didn’t do a very good job of this…once I started writing on the wall with chalk, I noticed every imperfection in it! We live in a very old house, with very bumpy walls. Get the wall as smooth as you can.
Next, I laid a few coats of magnetic paint down with a roller. I found the roller spread it better. This was followed by several coats of chalkboard paint.
To make the homemade chalkboard look very nice, I bought some inexpensive trim in the trim aisle at Home Depot. This is sold by the linear foot in case the pricing confuses you. I purchased some small, lightweight pine trim, about an inch and a half wide. I mitered the ends with a miter saw when I got home, to make sure that the frame fit neatly around the chalkboard.
After making sure they fit nicely, I took them outside and spray painted them metallic silver. The combination of rosy pink, chalkboard black, and silver is awesome for my homemade chalkboard, isn’t it?
To apply, I put Liquid Nails Glue along the back of the wood, followed by gently nailing it into the wall. I found it easier to pre-pound the trim nails in slightly before applying the glue. I put a small trim nail in every foot or so, then I set it with a nail set.
To spruce it up even more, I took a planter, and spray painted that silver. We use that to hang up our chalk.
To see other projects with chalkboard paint, to get your brain moving, check out my pinterest board for chalkboard projects!