A Chalk Art Festival & DIY Framed Chalkboard

This past weekend my family went to the Utah Foster Care Foundation’s 10th Annual Chalk Art Festival.  During the two day festival artists create works of art on the sidewalk.  The festival raises funds to benefit Utah’s foster families. Here are a couple of photos that I took of the sidewalk art at the festival:

Artist: Jonah Nielsen Slart | Utah Foster Care Foundation’s 10th Annual Chalk Art Festival

Artist: Corrine Johnson | Utah Foster Care Foundation’s 10th Annual Chalk Art Festival

Pretty cool huh? To continue on the chalk theme, today I’ll show you how I made a framed chalkboard  using an inexpensive thrift store frame and paint.

After trying to write the title of this project on my chalkboard, I have a whole new level of respect for the chalk artists!

As we are almost unpacked (finally!) and we are starting to think about how to decorate our new place.  We have a lot more wall space than in our last apartment so we have been looking for inexpensive yet stylish ways to fill some of that space. Our new place is also quite colorful with red and yellow walls so we need decorations that would not clash with the wall colors.

When I came across a tutorial for how to make an ornate framed chalkboard by Marian Parsons of Mustard Seed Interiors on HGTV.com, I knew I had to try this.  I had been admiring a friend’s menu chalkboard for quite some time and I thought a chalkboard would be perfect addition to the wall in our kitchen.  Here is a picture of my inspiration:

Miss Mustard Seed - Ornate Framed ChalkboardSource:  Miss Mustard Seed.

The frame in my inspiration, while beautiful, is a bit ornate for our decor.  I found a frame better suited to our style at Goodwill for a couple of dollars.  I selected a frame that had some texture and detail so that paint and stain would give it depth.  I don’t have a saw (yet) so I had one of the men working in the lumber section at Lowe’s cut a sheet of hardboard to fit my frame.

Frame for DIY Framed ChalkboardIn a well ventilated area and wearing a mask, I painted the frame with two coats of gold paint.  I waited for the paint to dry between coats.

(After partially painting the frame, I realized that the edges were not flush so I put some spackling paste in the cracks and let it dry before I finished painting the frame.  If I were doing this again I’d fill in any cracks with spackle before I started painting.)

Painting the Frame for a DIY Framed ChalkboardWhen the paint had dried, I painted the frame with one coat of walnut stain.  I let the stain dry for about 20 minutes before rubbing off the excess with an old towel.  I let the frame dry for a couple of days.

I sanded the edges of the hardboard.  I painted the hardboard with chalkboard paint using a roller brush, letting the paint dry between coats.

I let the board sit for a couple of days before rubbing the entire surface with the edge of a piece of chalk to prepare the board for use. While wearing gloves, I wiped the board with a dry piece of paper towel and then wiped the board clean with a damp cloth.

My frame already had little metal tabs to hold the item to be framed in place so I just bent back the tabs slid in my painted hardboard and pushed the tabs back in place.

Here is a close up of the corner of the frame:

I hung the frame on the wall using a mirror hanging kit.

To make the chalkboard, I used the following:

Supplies for DIY Framed Chalkboard

  •  Used frame
  •  Hardboard, cut to size
  • Newspaper, paper or drop cloth to protect work surface
  • Mask
  • Old towel
  • Paint brush, foam brush, roller, tray, and paint stirrer
  • Latex gloves
  • Spackle
  • Chalkboard paint (I used Valspar Chalkboard Paint)
  • Wood stain (I used MinWax Wood Finish in Special Walnut)
  • Gold paint (I used Liquid Leaf in Florentine Gold)
  • Screwdriver (to open cans of paint)
  • Sandpaper
  • Chalk
  • Paper towel
  • Clean up supplies appropriate for the paint used
  • Mirror hanging kit


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A Chalk Art Festival & DIY Framed Chalkboard — 7 Comments

  1. Marie,
    Love this! Great tutorial too. I’m going to have to go through all my old frames because I know I have a ton of large ones that would work great for this project.

  2. Pingback: A Summer Party & Ginger Lime Honeydew Skewers (Recipe) | Scissors and Spoons

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