chalk it up. chalkboard wall.

Sometimes the small, simple projects are the ones that leave the biggest impact. Don’t you think? Take our kitchen cabinets. We had one entire wall that was the end unit of our cabinet. No life. No personality. Nothing. You could see it from just about every room and every direction. It drove me nuts. And, I got to thinking that there must be a better use of space for that boring, blank wall. The answer?

chalkboard wall collage final

It is plain to see just look at how sad it was before. Dismiss the terrible {before} shot, but you at least get the gist.

Before Cabinet
In truth, it really wasn’t that hard. Though I admit that my other half did do most of the real labor. I did a lot of smiling and then did what I do best, make it pretty.

step 1. Nail the roll of sheet metal to your cabinet side, leaving room around the outside for your moulding.
Be careful! It is super sharp and you need to wear gloves when making any cuts or putting it up.

step 2. Apply several layers of chalkboard paint. I did 4-5 coats so that it had an even consistency.

step 3. Using a nail gun (or nails) fasten the selected moulding to the outside edges of the chalkboard inset.
Think of a frame… that is what you’re replicating.

step 4. P
aint the frame.
I chose {french linen} Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and a dark wax to complete the look I was going for.

step 5. Prime the chalkboard. SO important!
Using the side of a piece of chalk, rub it all over the chalkboard. This important step will prepare it for the first masterpiece.

step 6. Done. now you just need to chalk it up and add a few magnets while you’re at it. Cute, huh?

DIY Wall Picture & logo

Now if this seems overwhelming, there are always options.

  • skip the magnet part… just make it a chalkboard, which will still be unbelievably cute
  • use a thick ribbon or jute webbing to frame the outside border… you could even add upholstery tacks to pretty it up
  • depending on the size of your chalkboard space, purchase a {frame kit} at Lowes or Home Depot… paint it up to change the existing color
  • use a different paint color around the border of the chalkboard to give the illusion of a frame

A simple update. A big impact. A ridiculously adorable way to personalize a special corner in your home.

{sneak peek.}
See part two of my chalkboard wall later this week. Find out how you can personalize it to showcase you, your family and your interests…


try. enjoy. share.

Letter J  XO

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34 Responses to chalk it up. chalkboard wall.

  1. Misty September 10, 2013 at 8:56 pm #

    I love that you posted on this! One of my faves. Have been patiently waiting for home ownership again so I can do something chalkboard-ish that is more permanent. Love it! And always love the messages embellished on it 🙂

    • lulu & linen September 10, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

      Thank you! You know I love that silly chalkboard! Get ready for the big reveal later this week… 🙂

  2. Jen Schwartz September 11, 2013 at 8:29 am #

    Great idea! I hate my giant pantry doors in the kitchen – boring, big and an eye sore for sure! John is going to be so excited when I talk to him about our latest project…thanks!

  3. Janell September 26, 2013 at 12:57 pm #

    So by priming chalkboard you are just filling it all in with chalk ? And the molding you painted with a chalk paint as well? Is it bc just in case they draw on the molding ? I can’t wait to get started! I’m writing list now !!

    • lulu & linen September 26, 2013 at 2:12 pm #

      Yes… must prime! Take a piece of chalk and place on its side, then rub all over your board. If you don’t do this step the first thing you write or draw on your board will become a permanent imprint. The paint I used for moulding is called ‘Annie Sloan chalk paint’, but it is not an actual ‘chalkboard paint’ and your are not able to write on it with chalk. However, I love the Annie Sloan brand because you don’t have to prime or sand before painting and you can apply a dark wax over the top to give your pieces a patina’d look. You can find more colors and information at http://www.anniesloan.com. Good luck! And, keep your eyes peel next week’s post where I give some ideas for your October board.

      • Janell Livermont October 10, 2013 at 5:58 am #

        Thanks !!!

  4. Susie October 29, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    Do you use liquid chalk markers? The white is very vibrant.

    • lulu & linen October 29, 2014 at 6:18 pm #

      I typically use good ole’ fashioned chalk because I tend to write better with it. I used liquid chalk on my September board, however I wasn’t very happy with how it came off. I think it’s a great option if you’re planning on keeping the writing for awhile. I hope that helps! Let me know if you have more questions.

  5. A December 23, 2014 at 12:25 pm #

    Do you use magnets on it? Do they scratch up the chalkboard paint? I’m thinking of doing this in the kids’ playroom but i’m worried that their magnets will scratch the chalk paint.

    • lulu & linen December 23, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

      I haven’t had a problem with magnets scratching, but mine don’t get moved around very much. If anything you could do a quick toich up. I hope you try it… I think you’ll love it!

  6. Tiffany January 3, 2015 at 1:46 pm #

    Does Lowes sell the frame kit u are talking about or are u guessing they do? If u know they do, what do I ask for? I checked their website and didn’t see anything.

    • lulu & linen January 3, 2015 at 2:00 pm #

      Unfortunately, you are not able to buy a “kit” from Lowes. All materials are available, however you will need to purchase the items separately and put it together yourself. You basically need: moulding {your choice and enough to go around the size chalkboard you want}, sheet metal if you want it to be magnetic {you can buy in pre-cut sheets or we bought a roll and cut it ourselves}, chalkboard paint. and paint for the frame you made out of moulding. Once you buy everything you will nail the sheet metal first, cut your moulding pieces to size and nail those to the wall and then paint for finishing touches.
      If you do not need your chalkboard wall to be very long an alternative would be to find an open frame and make a chalkboard/magnetic board using pre-cut sheet metal. I have made several of those for my boys bedrooms and they are super easy. Hope that helps! Let me know if you have more questions… here to help!

  7. Jonny July 13, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

    If you don’t want to nail this permanently to your cabinet, you could prep the metal and then nail it into the back of your pre-made picture frame. Then you could hang the chalkboard as a unit with Velcro, double stick tape, etc.

  8. Stephanie July 2, 2016 at 7:14 am #

    Looks wonderful! I’m having a challenge finding a sheet metal roll that is longer than 4′. What is your product? And what gauge metal did you use? Thanks!

    • lulu & linen July 2, 2016 at 9:19 pm #

      Thanks for the sweet words! I happened to be at Lowes today and snapped a picture of the roll of sheet metal we used. I will send it directly to your email. I hope it helps! If not, let me know and I’ll do a little more digging. xo, jessica

      • Mira October 1, 2016 at 9:36 pm #

        I am having a hard time finding the sheet metal at a long enough length

        • Mira October 1, 2016 at 9:38 pm #

          Oh! Couple of more question for you 🙂 what do you use to wipe the chalk off? any problem with the board scratching with the magnets?

          • lulu & linen October 3, 2016 at 9:07 pm #

            Hi there!

            At my local Lowes, they have rolled up sheet metal that is in the same section as the pre-cut sheets. The product is sheet metal rolled up in a cylinder shape that is in a longer length than the the traditional square/rectangular sizing. I will try to get the barcode next time I am there, as I am unable to find it online. Sorry!

            I also found a site online that can pre-cut steel for you as well… it might be worth looking at! https://www.metalsupermarkets.com

            I typically use old-school chalk, which doesn’t leave imprints or leftover residue. I use a wet cloth to wipe off and immediately dry with a clean towel. In the event I use chalk marker I have to “aggressively” wipe off with a wet cloth. I haven’t had many issues with the paint wiping off, with the exception of when my 3 year old pulled a magnet off and a small piece of paint chipped. However, I tend to repaint or add a few new layers of paint every 6-8 months if I frequently change the chalkboard. I think it gives it a fresh, clean look!

            Hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions… xo, jessica

      • Deb March 9, 2017 at 9:29 pm #

        Please send what metal you used to me also.

        • lulu & linen March 10, 2017 at 3:29 pm #

          Hi there! Thanks for following along! I used a roll of sheet metal from Lowes. You can find it near the pre-cut sheet metal pieces in your local hardware store. Hope that helps… Jessica

  9. Mira October 4, 2016 at 9:18 am #

    Thank you so much!! And yes, if you get a chance to send me the barcode that would be amazing!

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