I am obsessed with chalkboard art. I love the versatility of being able to update them for different occasions and seasons. I’m forever driving my family crazy by showing them pictures of chalkboard art, signs and quotes I’ve pinned on Pinterest. You know, those projects that you will get round to doing some day (of course I’ll never be able to – I mean I’ve pinned thousands of them .. but a girl can dream!..).
Unfortunately I never found quite the right size and shape frame for our lounge. Until I spotted this mirror recently! I knew that the gorgeous chunky frame was just perfect for what I wanted on our dresser.
Here’s how it was before. A gorgeous chunky frame, but a bit plain looking. Sorry you pine loving people out there but there’s just too much pine going on in this picture. Definitely time for a make-over.
What I used to make this chalkboard art design
- Chalk paints – I used a taupe/grey colour and a cream paint for the top coat
- Chalkboard paint
- Clear Wax – I used Rustoleum
- Good quality paint brushes
- A good quality brush for waxing – I love this round brush from Diall
- A paint pen or Chalk pen
How to create your own chalkboard art
I started by carefully popping out the mirror from the frame. It’s a lovely beveled mirror and I’ve already got another project in mind for it 😉 – stay tuned peeps! I kept the backing of the frame as I’ll be using it to paint it with chalkboard paint, so it’s patiently waiting in the background until I need it.
Next I gave the whole frame a very light sanding down, just to make it easier for the paint to have something to grab onto.
There was very little prep needed for this project (yay!) as the frame was in such good condition, so it was ready for painting after a quick wipe down with a damp cloth. I used a taupe/grey colour for the base coat and gave the whole frame 2 coats with this colour in total.
While the frame was drying I dug out the backing of the frame and gave it a coat of blackboard paint. It’s going to use a few coats to cove and give it that lovely “chalkboardy” feel. All in all I painted it with 3 layers of blackboard paint.
After the layers of the taupe base colour I painted the frame with 2 more layers of a cream coloured paint. I knew I wanted the frame to have a distressed look so will be rubbing down the cream paint lightly to have some of the base colour and the original wood showing through.
Once all the coats were dry, I took some fine sandpaper to the project and lightly sanded down the paint work in some strategic areas. I really recommend going lightly with the sanding to begin with! Every once in a while stand back and see if you’re happy with the overall effect. I really liked the look of this as I didn’t want it too neat. Distressing it just gives the frame a bit of character.
I used Rustoleum clear wax to finish off the frame and protect it. I absolutely love this product. It gives the whole thing a lovely sheen finish. Apply a layer, leave for about 10 minutes and then buff with a lint free cloth. Repeat this process if you want to. I gave it a total of 2 layers of wax.
Creating the wording
To create the wording I used Canva. If you’ve not used this before, please go and check it out. Like .. now.. OK, maybe finish reading this post first. Seriously, it’s amazing for designing quotes or graphics. It’s got loads of fonts, templates and graphics. And what’s more – you can use loads of it for free. There is a paid option but for what I need I use the free version. It’s brilliant. Anyway, I created the design with different fonts and then downloaded it as a PDF file on my desktop (just so I remembered where I saved it).
Next, go to a website called Blockposters.com You can find them here. You can download your design and print it in a larger size. As the chalkboard was larger than an A4 I used this site to print the design on two A4 pages and stuck the two together to line them up. But you can go even bigger if you need to.
Tape the 2 pages together like so … It’s really starting to take shape now. I just love doing this part as it’s all coming together!
Flip the paper over and with a chalk cover the bit where there is writing. Basically, anything that you want to transfer to the chalkboard needs to be covered on the back with chalk.
Next stick the paper to the chalkboard with low tack tape (chalky side down). Make sure it can’t move as you will be tracing the top of the letters, pressing the chalk onto the chalkboard as you do the tracing. When you’ve done the whole thing, your chalkboard should look something like this (sorry about the bad lighting – it was late at night!)
Next trace the wording with a white pen, either chalkpaint or a emulsion paint pen, like this one.
I wanted this frame to be a permanent feature in our lounge and won’t be using it for changing the quotes so I chose to add the design with the emulsion paint pen. It gives a lovely crisp white finish and I’m really pleased with the results.
Tip: If you’re thinking of changing the quotes every so often and are using a chalkboard pen, then make sure you season your chalkboard before adding your design. If you don’t season your chalkboard before using it, you may not be able to rub out your very original design. Check out the video below to see how to season your board before using it.
What’s your favourite chalkboard art? I’d love to see your creations. Don’t forget to find me on social media.