Chalkboards 3 Ways

I’m not a fair weather chalkboard fan.  I use chalkboards in different ways in my house and I thought I’d do a post here to round them all up all nice and neat in one place.

1. Buy a Premade Chalkboard

I found this thinly framed chalkboard at a yard sale for $1.  It’s a standard size so when I saw what I think was an old poster frame on clearance, I painted it white and painted the small wood chalkboard boarder white and hot glued them together.  A match made in heaven. I’ve seen similar chalk boards at Target and such for $8.

2. Use Chalkboard Paint

Chalkboard paint made a huge impact in our $175 Renter’s Laundry Room Makeover.  I LOVE painting with chalkboard paint, it feels SO soft when you paint it.  And I haven’t tried colors but these look really fun.

3. Chalkboard Contact Paper

I LOVE our chalkboard fireplace surround.  Since we are renting I wanted something non permanent.  The peel off paper was the perfect choice.  I got mine from Wall Candy Arts and I used the Chalkboard panels and you get enough to do the fireplace and I even added the leftovers to the inside of a few cabinets to write notes on.  And it peels right off when you are done.  I’ve seen the peel off paper at other places but haven’t used any other brands yet. We’ve had the fireplace surround up for 3 years–we use the fireplace without the glass in place all winter and have had no problems with the surround buckling or anything.

I like chalkboard so much–it’s even my home page on my phone.

dana tanamachi

desire to inspire

I’m not saying those are chalkboards or slate, but you totally could get a similar look with a bunch of wood painted in chalk paint.

Angela Luckey-Sanchez

What have you done with chalk lately?

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  1. thank goodness these aren’t going out of style! I have them all over my house!! Don’t you just love Miss Mustard Seed’s shirts! I can’t wait to get one!

  2. Nester I’m a chalk lover too! I used Dana’s inspiration from the West Elm catalog to make a Merry Christmas sign last December:

    More like permanent chalk since I painted it!

  3. I have some chalkboard closet doors in my foyer, and a beautiful framed chalk board in my daughters room….this makes me want more more more! Can you have too much?

  4. My cousin grew up with a dinosaur shaped chalk board in his bedroom. I thought it was one the weirdest and coolest pieces yet. I am still slightly obsessed with it now that I think about it. I had forgotten he had it until I walked into his older sister’s house for a family event and she had it hanging up in her kitchen. It was great. It is definitely not something you see every day and it’s even a color too. I’m sure it was really something special 20+ years ago when my aunt and uncle put it up. I may just have to make my daughter one…. or, who am I kidding, I want one too!

  5. i have also been loving chalk paint and anything related to chalk boards. I like how it looks and it also reminds of school =) what brand of chalk board paint did you use?

  6. Valerie J. says

    Oh my! Just fell on the 3-D art trap on pinterest, not sure I. can. quit.
    Just saw some chalk paint inside kitchen cabinet doors( all of them) and it was pretty nice, don’t remember where it was but might just do it at home.

  7. I also love chalkboards and don’t think they will be going out of style any time soon. I bought my chalkboard signs at Pottery Barn Kids a long time ago….see my post on where I use them currently:

    Haven’t figured out where to keep a large one I have, I get it out for birthdays and holidays with greetings….but I am totally inspired by your living room one….thinking about adding it to one of my walls! Thanks! ~Kim

  8. I haven’t used it yet but I was thinking about using it for 2 doors ~ the metal (fire) door from my garage to kitchen and the basement (fire) door. My husband rolled his eyes so I was just wondering if it gets too messy looking, can it easily be painted over? I was going to try the black chalkboard paint. Thanks!

    • yes, you can paint right over it (I’d use primer for the first paint over coat) but you can even see the texture of the wall through the chalk board paint, it’s just paint –try it!

  9. You have a chalkboard on your phone?! I love that! I just got an iphone, where did you find it? I love chalkboard too. It looks fantastic in your laundry room. And that 3D art, wow!

  10. Woah! Love the fireplace idea! What a cute way to make some cheap brick ;)

  11. I’ve never used chalkboard paint, and I don’t have any chalkboards in my house…maybe it’s time to try? I saw some candles at Home Goods which were painted in chalkboard paint and came with a couple stick s of chalk…it was cute. Can I say “chalk” a few more times?! haha.

  12. This post leaves me inspired to try some of these ideas!

  13. I use them every time I have a party…usually for the menu, but last week for a sign at our graduation party. I also have a super duper large one in my office with the names and birthdays of all of our relatives and a chalkboard wall in my sons’ room.

  14. I painted the end of my wall of kitchen cabinets with chalkboard paint (black). It’s a tall skinny area that I couldn’t do anything with anyway and we enjoy it.

  15. This is off topic, but I’ve seen those beautiful blue glass candle holders in several of your posts–the ones on your mantel–and I’m always curious where they came from. (You probably mentioned it at some point along the way and I just missed it!) Are they from World Market by any chance? I’ve seen something similar there, and every time I see a picture of yours I am tempted to get in the car and go buy them!

  16. I LOVE chalkboards! I never get tired of them! I did a giant chalkboard calendar recently

  17. I painted my kitchen cabinets with chalkboard paint…

    Don’t forget the dustless chalk. Not fully dustless, but less dusty than regular chalk.

    And then I couldn’t stop with the chalkboard paint…for the dog leashes…

    I’d love to find one of those old framed slate chalkboards! I LOVE CHALKBOARDS!

  18. So far I’ve only ventured into the first category, but I really treasure having a place to write (and easily switch out) inspirational messages for our family.

    Oh man, 3D? That blows my mind! :)

  19. You inspired me to write a little blog about the chalkboards in my life. I referred my readers back to your more complete research!

  20. i have a serious chalkboard addiction. maybe it’s because i was a teacher?

    they are practical and vintage…i have one in my kitchen. i plan to paint a chalkboard wall in my son’s room this summer. i have them on the inside of cabinets…

    chalkboard even inspired my new teaching website’s logo. i am still smitten with it.

  21. I think chalkboards add that dash of black to a room that’s so appealing and I love how they can be functional as well.

  22. i want some chalk pastels for my hair-did you see A Cup of Jo’s hair tip with chalk? have to try it sometime this summer!

  23. I love chalkboards. Period. Growing up my parents placed a huge salvaged slate chalkboard in my bedroom…..too fun! Somewhere along the way, I had been given a small chalkboard with the little chalk shelf as a child also. I came across it when going through my parents’ attic and took it home, hung it in the garage and forgot about it. Today is fits perfectly on my kitchen counter where I attempt to create pretty verses. Drawing with a piece of chalk is more difficult than I remember….LOL!
    Inspiring post!!

  24. You are awesome and inspire me so much! I saw your post about the peel and stick chalkboard for your fireplace awhile ago and wanted some, but didn’t want to pay so much for it. So, I bought a spray can of chalkboard paint at Home Depot and bought plain white contact paper from Wal-Mart and made my own!!! I used a big piece to cover an “antiqued mirror” I had started to hate from the Hob Lob, and cut smaller pieces to use as labels. Worked out great!

  25. Love, love, love chalkboards! I missed the contact paper mention before. That one is truly amazing! Wonder how it works on framed boards? I use the spray time and have had mixed results.

  26. I found a metal piece at Ross, on sale, very cheap. It had a tacky rose picture painted on it and I turned it into a kitchen talk board. I just love it. Here’s what it looks like…

  27. I really want to jump on the chalkboard band wagon. I’m glad you brought this up so I can start thinking about it again. I love how it not only makes a room look interesting but it also adds a touch of texture. Very awesome.

  28. Totally off topic (not unusual for me), but HOW have I missed those aqua candleholders on your mantel until now???? Your last couple posts they have just reached out and grabbed me. Where?

  29. Chalkboards really are fun, aren’t they? This spring I painted an inset on the inside of my pantry door with chalkboard paint. I need to rig something to keep the chalk handy so I’ll use it more. And more recently I turned an old Goodwill painting with a nice, chunky frame into a chalkboard for my front porch. I figure I can write appropriate messages for different seasons of the year, greetings for guests, etc. For instance, if I have a party for Emily when her next book comes out, I can write “Way to go, Emily” or something like that and it’ll be the first thing people see when they arrive. Right now it just says “Relax,” which is not a bad reminder for me! :)

  30. We are in the middle of opening our own little gallery space inside a big gallery, and we’ve painted three of the walls with chalkboard paint! I’m stoked but a little nervous. Three big old walls – two of them 21 feet long – all chalky. But we’ll be able to doodle frames around unframed pieces and write the prices and scratch em out and write a discount…I think we’ll have fun with it. Thanks for the inspiration – and this post which has encouraged me all over again that it was may haps a good and brave choice!

  31. As a teacher by day, I can say that chalkboards in classrooms are a thing of the past, at least in my district. White boards are the way to go. Personally, writing with chalking and accidentally touching my fingernail to the board gave me the serious shivers. In homes, though, I do love the look of chalkboards as they are waaaay more stylish and attractive than dry erase boards. I love the styles and ideas that you featured! {does anyone else get the shivers when writing with chalk or it is just me???}

  32. I LOVE chalkboard paint. In fact, I covered the bottom half of my son’s bedroom walls with it. HOWEVER, I need chalk that is not crazy messy. I found the chalk pens, but spending $25+ for some markers that he will destroy is pointless. Any suggestions?

  33. Tiny Prints just released new card designs today and chalk board style is one of them!

    (FYI- your nester site was hard to access again today)

  34. Chalkboards are fabulous! I am doing a little happy dance because I just scored the most amazing chalkboard in all mankind! It’s antique, it’s on a wooden stand, it’s enormous, it’s on casters … I’m dying! Haven’t posted about it yet – I’m still trying to get my heart beat back to a normal rate!

    Your fireplace surround – genius!

  35. Nester, Do you have any coupon codes for the chalk ink site? The products are priced reasonably but the shipping is CRAZY! Thanks.

  36. May I ask where you purchased your matted frames in the first photo. I’ve been looking endlessly for some affordable options. Suggestions? I love the entire wall you’ve created in that photo! Thank you for sharing such wonderful ideas!

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  38. how2home says

    This is such a great inspiration…i’m planning to paint of the kitchen walls with chalkboard paint, any pointers before i start?

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