DIY magnetic chalkboard

So I finally completed one of the design projects on my list that was also a gift for my little one for his 1st birthday.  This "green" blackboard is an idea I stole from the amazingly talented designer diana keen after visiting her home for a party.  It's a genius way to  make use of our limited square footage by converting a space that isn't kid friendly into one that is! 

Sam actually enjoys his new magnetic chalkboard much more than his facial expression suggests!

Here's what I did::

1.  I measured the opening of my fireplace including surrounding stone that is set back about 1 inch from the wood mantel piece. 

2.  Went to Home Depot and picked out a piece of  sandeply 3/4 inch thick plywood cut from sustainably managed forests.  Any plywood would do, but this particular brand is green, which I like, takes paint nicely and has a very smooth finish so no worry about splinters.  I had it cut 1/4 of an inch smaller than my measurements to allow for it to slide in and expand a bit once painted.  This cost around $40 and since you have to buy the entire 8 foot x 4 foot board, I left with enough to make 2 boards.

3.  I found this low VOC, non-toxic and child-safe metallic/chalkboard paint at Colori  in Wicker Park off North Avenue for about $40.

4.  I brought it home and started painting.  I applied 3 coats of paint (to one side only) with a small roller allowing each coat to dry for 1 hour before applying the next.  The odor was minimal, but I cracked a window for maximum ventilation.

5.  I allowed the board to dry for 24 hours before putting it over the fireplace where it will stay for a while and hopefully provide hours of entertainment for my little guy and his friends.

 After the party, I wiped it down with a wet cloth and it now has that vintage blackboard feel.  We love it!

1 comment:

  1. heather - this turned out amazing -looks fantastic! I love that you could use the idea for your place and wish sam many happy hours of playing and drawing!


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