Thursday, November 20, 2014

How-To Chalkboard Canvas Decor

Along with a busy Holiday season, I've got two kid birthdays also going on every year.  This year we decided to do a double birthday celebrations for the kiddos.

But I also wanted to do some fun home décor as well.  I wanted to use supplies I already had in my craft room or that are easy to locate in your local craft store. 

I had a 16" x 20" canvas along with a frame laying around!  I decided on a framed chalkboard.  All I had to do was paint the large canvas!  I completed this project in a span of 3 hours.  (Tip: If you don't have a spare 3 hours laying around, speed up the drying process by using a hairdryer between coats of paint!  Yes!  Dust off your hair dryer and finally put it to use!)

Here are the easy steps:

Step 1:  Gather your supplies and cover your working surface with a few layers of newspaper.  In case of a spill, it's best to have more than one layer so that paint won't happen to soak through onto your work surface.  I've used a 16x20 canvas but you could also paint a piece of cardboard as well.  Anything stiff and sturdy that you could frame.  You'll also need gloves, black chalkboard paint (I used some by Plaid), and a sponge brush.  Sponge brushes will not leave the brush/bristle texture behind as you paint.

Step 2:  For minimal clean up, I like to use a old piece of paper, wax paper, foil, or even pieces of cereal boxes.  Use what you have laying around.  Use this as your paint palette and when you're done you can just throw it away in the trash.  Here I've used a piece of wax paper.

Step 3:  Paint on your first coat of chalkboard paint and be sure to cover the edges of the canvas.  In the future you can choose to hang it without the frame and the edges will look nice and finished.  Let dry 30 minutes to an hour between coats and paint on about 3 coats for a nice even finish.  Let dry for 24 hours.

Step 4:  Once you're done, you can prep/prime your chalkboard surface by taking a piece of chalk and rubbing it over the entire front surface of your canvas.  This will insure that when you draw/write on it for the first time, the images won't show up after your erase it later.

Now your chalkboard canvas is ready for some nice artwork!

The first event I am hosting is a birthday party.  Since I decided on using a chalkboard marker, I didn't prep the surface of the chalkboard canvas.  I wanted the artwork to have a greater contrast between black and white.  I tested the surface to see if the marker would fully erase but it left behind a bit of a white cast/shadow.  My plan is to paint another couple coats of chalkboard paint after the birthday party to get my canvas ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas just in c)se the design will not erase completely.  I plan to try rubbing alcohol to see if it will help take the white cast completely away. (I'll let you know if that works out.)

Because I have no experience with chalkboard art, I turned to Pinterest for some ideas.  There are tons of images to help you find pictures and fonts to use.  I simply searched "Happy Birthday chalkboard art" and had many pins to choose from.  I really liked this post from In My Own Style.  I found that the photo was easy for me to replicate.  Search the photos until you find inspiration that speaks to you and that you could easily re-create in your own style.  THAT is the key.  Chalkboard art is imperfect, smudged, nostalgic and cozy!  Don't over think it or stress over perfection.  Just create and have fun!

Here are some pretty cool blog posts about chalkboard art/lettering I came across (or search chalkboard art DIY on Pinterest):

Here's my finished project!  I purchased this frame with glass and a print inside on sale with my Michael's 40 % off coupon.  I ditched the glass and print and popped the canvas in.  Secure with duct tape on the back.  This frame was made to lean up against a wall and not be hung on a wall.  If you do plan on hanging the artwork, I'd purchase a canvas panel and not a stapled canvas.

Hope you enjoyed this post!  Let me know if you were able to come up with something based on this post!  I'd love to see it!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for the linky love! I too turn to Pinterest for lots of inspiration. Your final birthday chalkboard turned out fabulous!


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