You may or may not already know, but we homeschool, and since we don’t have a dedicated schoolroom, the kitchen table is where all the learning happens. After years of primary colored school decor and silly puttying everything up on the wall, I decided to get a bit more sophisticated with our learning materials and make them part of our home’s decor. Nothing says “school” more than a chalkboard and we do need a calendar and someplace to jot memos down, so I decided to make my own calendar/memo board chalkboard.
I had some leftover hardboard from our bathroom board and batten DIY (which I promise to post about, eventually…someday) and some random 1x3s laying around in the garage. Being the highly methodical and perfectionistic person that I am, I just grabbed a piece of hardboard that was already cut and looked to be a good size and decided to cut the 1x4s to fit it. If I don’t have to break out the circular saw, then my projects tend to actually get done.
After measuring out and cutting the boards I did a quick check to make sure that everything fit together and that the corners were nice and square. I wanted my frame to look a little rustic, so I whacked away at it with both sides of a hammer until there were some nice dings and dents. I also laid a few random screws and nuts on the boards and hammered over them to give it even more character. Then I flipped everything over, laid out my frame, positioned the hardboard on top and nailed it in from the back.
This is the part where the project sat in the garage for the next three weeks because it started to get hot outside (and only partly because I’m a major procrastinator). Anywho….after realizing that I could bring the chalkboard inside to paint, I, A) felt like an idiot, and B) continued on with the project.
Now if you want to make things easier for yourself (and skip a step) you can paint your hardboard with chalkboard paint before you affix it to the frame. If you want to be like me, you can not paint it and then nail everything together and have to tape off the frame with painter’s tape. So, yeah. That’s what I did next.
I painted three coats of chalkboard paint, letting it dry for four hours between each coat. I also stained my frame with two coats of Minwax stain in the color “Dark Walnut”. Love that stain! I think it’s my new favorite.
Once that was all dry, I used a measuring stick and pencil to draw out my lines for the calendar. Next, I busted out my handy paint pen and traced over the pencil lines, still using the measuring stick as a straight edge.
After the paint pen dried, I seasoned my chalkboard. That’s where you run over the whole chalkboard with the long side of the chalk stick so that the first writings or drawings that you make don’t get scratched into the chalkboard surface permanently. Now, I suggest using somewhat quality chalk for this part and not the leftover chalk that your kid got in his Sonic kid’s meal. It made some pretty gnarly scratches even though I was using the long side. Moving on!
I busted out the hand vacuum to suck up all the dust and ran a wet rag over it a few times to clean up any remaining chalk. And viola! Chalkboard calendar/memo board was complete! I grabbed the rest of my crappy chalk and scribbled out the days of the month and a cute little homage to summertime. I can’t wait to decorate it each month and with the changing seasons.
Have a great week, everyone, and thanks for stopping by!