Family painting with chalkboard paint

Chalkboard walls are popping up everywhere. Chalkboard paint is readily available in a variety of colors and is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to transform a room. Leave yourself notes inside a cabinet door.

How to… paint a chalkboard wall

Write reminders for yourself (grocery list) or your spouse (honey-do list) in the entryway. Make a growth chart for your kids. Express yourself and wipe it clean later. Here’s how to transform living space into a place where it’s OK to write on the wall.

Step 1: Choose the wall area

Think about how you will use the space and then choose the size of the painted area. Will it be just a small area for notes? Select a centralized area such as in the kitchen or mudroom. Will your chalkboard wall be for the kids to doodle on? If so, be sure to select a space low enough for their little hands to reach. A home office can be enhanced with floor-to-ceiling erasable art and notes. Once you have an idea what the area will be used for, then you can choose the color. Chalkboard paint comes in all kinds of cool colors or the traditional chalkboard black and green.

Tints available for chalkboard paint >>

Step 2: Prep the wall

Smooth walls work best for writing and erasing. Textured walls can be covered with chalkboard paint but writing can look rather rough and the erased walls can have a messy look. Most experts recommend smoothing off as much of the texture as you can using sandpaper. For more deeply textured walls, you can use putty to smooth the surface. Once the area is smoothed to your liking, use a level and painter’s tape to mark off the area you want to paint.

Try making your own chalkboard paint >>

paintStep 3: Paint

For best results, paint the corners first and then roll the rest with a low-nap roller. You will need to do two to three coats, with three hours drying time in between. The chalkboard surface must be allowed to completely cure for three days before using it. Different brands of chalkboard paint may require specific drying times -- check with the manufacturer for detailed instructions. Frame the painted area for a chalkboard feel, if desired. You can use trim and paint it to match your existing decor.

Step 4: Chalk it up

Write to your heart’s content with regular chalk. Erase with a chalkboard eraser or use a little soap and water and allow to dry. Try chalkboard paint in your home and set your family’s inner artists free.

Watch the video below on how to create your own chalkboard paint.

More home how-to projects

How to arrange a family photo wall
How to decorate your foyer
How to make homemade picture frames



Comments on "How to use chalkboard paint"

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Beth August 21, 2012 | 3:25 AM

This is such a great trick, and not just for your kids. My friends and I found some plywood to paint with the blackboard chalk and made some really cool murals to break up the boring wall space in our apartment. And they doubled as message boards and hilarious party doodles.

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