Magnetic Chalkboard Wall

We have a problem with organization in our kitchen.  I love having everything organized, but life gets in the way and just when I think I’m on top of things, BAM, life runs away from me and I’m trying to catch up to it and running out of breath.  In an attempt to help keep our daily lives a little more on the ball, we decided to create a magnetic chalkboard wall in our kitchen and make it an “organization station”.

We have this sort of useless wall next to the laundry room door just off the kitchen where we used to hang a calendar.  The popularity of chalkboard paint got me thinking we could make better use of this space.  My darling husband did some recon work and suggested we make the chalkboard wall magnetic: brilliant! So we bought the magnetic paint and chalkboard paint, taped off the area we wanted to paint and got to work.

The magnetic paint went on first.  Warning: this stuff is oil based so it STUNK up the place.  It’s also incredibly hard to mix because, well, it’s metal! Had we known it would smell so bad we wouldn’t have tackled this project in December when the temperature drops and having windows and doors open leave you curled up on the couch under layers upon layers of blankets.  Live and learn.  In total we put on 3 coats of the magnetic stuff. Unfortunately,  the wall isn’t as magnetic as we’d like, so in hindsight a few more coats might have helped.

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This is the best angle I could get of the wall. We went all the way down to the floor so the kids can use it too once they’re old enough.

Then it was time for the chalkboard paint.  Water-based, this stuff is pretty much scent free and much more user friendly. It also only required 1 coat.  Much easier! The manufacturer instructions said to wait 3 days before writing on the chalkboard.

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The light switch is in an annoying spot but we’ll just work around it.

We bought pre-primed trim to frame in the area.  Keegan cut and nailed it into place and I puttied the joints and nail holes and painted it white.  I just used the white semi-gloss paint we used on our baseboards.

The manufacturer’s instructions for the chalkboard paint recommended that you run the flat edge of a chalk all over the entire surface, then erase, in order to “prime” it.  Not doing this could result in your first etchings being “un-eraseable”.  Warning: this makes an INCREDIBLY dusty mess.  I recommend having a vacuum close by.  You will likely need to wash the floors after too.

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Corner joints puttied and chalkboard “primed”.

Finally, now for the fun part! We went out to buy chalk and, believe it or not, in many stores (including the craft store we went to), chalk is considered “seasonal”, so we could only find white chalk. Bummer.  I was really hoping for some funky colours.  I made due with what we found (for now).

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I haven’t had time to do anything more creative than the “K” at the top but eventually I’d like to create something artsy and fun.

Just this past weekend though, Keegan found some coloured chalk (at Chapters of all places!), so today I updated our menu 🙂

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I’m looking forward to having our weeknight meals organized and not scrambling at the last minute trying to figure out something healthy and tasty to eat!

I have plans to make this space even more useful, but that’ll have to be for another post 🙂

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