Monday, November 19, 2012

DIY Chalkboard Tutorial

I've been wanting a chalkboard somewhere in my home for a while now, but haven't gotten around to buying one yet. I really like the look of the Restoration Hardware chalkboards, but didn't want to fork over that much $ for a chalkboard. So I decided - DIY it was.

We headed to Lowe's over the weekend to purchase our supplies:
- plywood (I bought a 2x4 pre-cut piece for $13)
- chalkboard paint in the can (not spray)
- stain
- steel wool (sandpaper will work as well)
- paint roller
- painters tape

The process was simple, but time consuming. I spent a total of two days working on my chalkboard, but it could be done in one day if desired. I am very happy with the result, and am debating on whether or not we will purchase a frame for it - I kind of like the industrial look it has with the 'raw' edge.

Picking up our supplies - my assistant fell asleep on the job.

Step One: Use painters tape to make a border (this is if you are staining a border). I simply lined up the edge of the tape with the edge of my wood.  

Step Two: Apply chalkboard paint using a roller. Apply a generous (but NOT thick) layer of paint, let it dry completely, then sand or steel wool the first coat. Paint second coat, let dry, sand. Paint third coat...etc. I ended up with four coats of paint because my wood grain was still showing through. (It would probably work best to sand your board BEFORE you start, but I didn't). 

Step Three: After the final coat is completely dry, carefully pull tape off exposing your border.

Step Four: Stain time! Carefully stain the border of your chalkboard - make sure to follow the directions according to the stain you choose. 

Step Five: Chalk it up - cover the entire chalkboard with chalk. This step is VERY important. 

Step Six: ENJOY! Decorate and hang/lean your chalkboard in its new home. Super simple tutorial - give it a shot! 


  1. This is a fantastic DIY project! I'm pinning it to use for my son's First Birthday. Thank you :)

  2. Excellent tutorial! You're right, it's better to make a chalkboard yourself - you can never find a perfect one in the shops! This looks like a simple project to do, I would love to give it a go once I move out to a bigger place. Thank you for sharing :)

  3. Love this! I'm going to buy the supplies tomorrow!!

    1. OOh yay! You'll have a great time!

    2. I wanted to thank you so much for the kind words you wrote on my blog. Grief is a difficult thing, but things are getting easier.
      I hope you have a happy thanksgiving with your adorable turkey!

      Hopefull I can complete this DIY during nap time next week :)

  4. I love this! My only question is- cover the entire chalkboard with paint? Did you mean chalk? Just checking! Found my Thanksgiving weekend project :)

    1. OOPS - yes! Ha - thank you for catching that! :) xo

  5. I love it! Such a cute idea for a kitchen. Def pinning this to my DIY projects that I am dying to try. Thanks for sharing and Happy Thanksgiving! :-)

  6. I love this!!! I actually have a big cork bulletin board that has never been used and was wanting to do something with it! Think it might work the same or not?

  7. Thanks for tutorial! Curious why you have to chalk up the whole board. Does the paint stay better?

  8. I am planning on making all my own signs for my wedding so this is perfect!
    The only question I have is, who do you cover the whole board with chalk?


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