Welcome to the blog! Thank you so much for buying my book and I hope you are enjoying it so far! You have stopped here because you want to learn how to build your own Chalkboard! It is very simple and such a fun DIY that can be a great addition to any space from the kitchen to a playroom. You can use chalkboards as a decorative backdrop to display a seasonal quote or saying, a reminder list or calendar. It is so useful we usually have at least one in the house.
Start with a brief and light sanding of sanded plywood. I know its already sanded, but sometimes you will find little slivers or rough areas in the plywood. Next you jump right into painting the sanded plywood with chalkboard paint. You can find Chalkboard paint at nearly all of the major hardware stores. You will want to ensure you have at least three, well-applied, layers of chalkboard paint. You can achieve a variety of textures based on the different rollers you use throughout the process, and how much (if at all) you sand between layers with a high grit sandpaper. A general nap roller will give you the same texture that there is on your walls, a mostly smooth surface with a small variant of texture. A Foam roller will give you your smoother result (with a roller). If you have a paint gun, clearly this would give you most smooth result. I personally use the general nap rollers, because I like the texture and look of a little more rough chalkboard. Once seasoned, it can quickly look like a chalkboard that has been around for years.
Once painted, I like to season the board before attaching any type of frame or border around the edge. What is seasoning? That is where you take your chalks body (the side of it) and lightly shade the entire chalkboard white. Wipe with a clean cloth, and repeat once more. The board has a light layer of chalk on it, and making the board clean better when you go to draw or write on. You can certainly go without seasoning, but once you draw something on the chalkboard it is very difficult to fully remove leaving that reminisce that sometimes can stick out like a sore thumb.
Now that the chalkboard is seasoned, it is time to frame. A frame can be as basic or as complex as you would like. I like for all the focus to be on the chalkboard so I typically will decide to go simple rather than complex. A simple frame as easy as four boards attached to the outside edge of the chalkboard. You can butt them up to one another, cut them at 45 degrees like a picture frame or any other types of joints you can think off. You can attach the frame with either a nail gun from the front, or screws installed from the back.
An optional chalk ledge can be added if you intend to keeping the chalk with the chalkboard. If you are thinking a seasonal quote, and something more to be admired as art, then I would skip forward and not install the chalk ledge. If you are more thinking a cute and practical way to display the to-do list, you will want the chalk to be nearby and a ledge is a perfect place to ensure you don’t lose it.
To add the ledge, a smaller piece of wood can be used. I would recommend a 2 x 2, and if you have a router, I would recommend a Core Box router bit, if not a flat ledge will usually keep all your chalk in one place. Attach the chalk ledge from the back with a proportionate screw from either the front or the back of the chalkboard. Given the thinness of the sanded plywood you can attach from the backside with staples or small screws, ensuring you don’t brake out from the front.
Lastly, cover the chalkboard, and either stain or paint the framed edge and you are done!
I hope you enjoyed this little DIY from the book, and it is just the little bit of added touch to cozy up your space.
Tools that you will need:
Staple Gun or Nail Gun
Paint or Stain