Monday, March 11, 2013

DIY: Chalkboard Frame {Part I}

Chalkboard paint is cool. Have you noticed? It's all over Pinterest, probably because it's so quick and easy to use. There are so many cool things you can do with it, like this, this, this and this. Today though, I am showing you perhaps the easiest and most common of the chalkboard DIYs. I'm showing the Chalkboard Frame.

This DIY is a two-parter because I made two different chalkboard frames. Since it's Monday, and we haven't DIY'd in a while, I'm starting you off with the easier one. The process was straightforward and easy, but took some time to allow for drying. I would recommend setting aside a whole afternoon for this project (or perhaps two, like me).

To begin, you must first gather your materials. You will need:
-a frame- preferably rescued from a dumpster somewhere (like this one was)
-spray paint- if you want to change the color of your frames
-chalkboard paint- the lady helping me recommended the actual chalkboard paint, not the spray kind
-paint roller
-steel wool

1. Take the framed mirror that my roommate you rescued from the dumpster and flip it over.

2. Remove the screws from the frame using a screwdriver. Save them in a ziplock bag, we will need later when we reassemble the frame. 

3. Open your chalkboard paint (Note: you can buy spray chalkboard paint, but several people advised me against it because the regular paint is a better "bang for your buck." Painting the mirror would have taken 2-3 cans of spray chalkboard paint, and only took one bucket of regular chalkboard paint).
Use a flat head screwdriver to open it. Piece of cake.
3. Paint the mirror using a roller. Use at least 3 coats or the paint will chip (I found this out the hard way, as I initially only painted 2 coats and it chipped. 3 coats has stayed put). Allow at least an hour of dry time in between coats. Once you have applied 3 coats, let it dry completely overnight.

4. Now spray paint your frame! I used a beauuutiful tangerine color. You can use whatever color you want. Spray 2-3 coats. Allow 10 minutes in between each coat (spray paint dries wayyy quicker than regular paint). Allow to fully dry over night.

5. The next morning (or 5 days later like me) it is time to reassemble your frame. Grab the bag of screws you saved when we took the frame apart and screw them back in. Now comes the secret of the chalkboard frame. Are you ready? Use the steel wool to "rough" up the perfect and beautiful chalkboard paint you just applied. I know, it hurts a little, but it will make the chalk stick when you start writing on it. (I didn't photograph the "roughing" of the paint. Please imagine it and accept my apologies.)

6. VOILA! You are finished. You did it! A big pat on the back to you.
Before = ugly, mirrored and poopy brown. Thumbs down.
After = cheery, bright and inspirational. Thumbs wayyy up!

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