DIY Chalkboard

I have been wanting to make my own chalkboard for quite some time, I just had not come across a frame that I liked enough.  I had the perfect place to hang one, so when a co-worker was giving some things away, she had a gold frame that I knew would work perfectly. (Thank you, Cheryl!)

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I immediately knew that I was going to use my chalk paint because I wanted to distress the frame for that worn look.  I applied two coats of the chalk paint with a foam brush and let it dry completely.  Once dry, I broke out my sandpaper and started distressing until I reached the desired look. (In hindsight, I would have left more of the gold intricate detailing instead of filling every nook with paint, but I am still happy with how it turned out.)

Since there was no back to this frame, it made the most sense to cut a piece of plywood to fit the back.  Two coats of chalkboard paint was used to cover the plywood and when dry, was glued into the frame using wood glue.  Since I like to dabble in art as a hobby of mine, I knew that I wanted to use this chalkboard to display quotes and drawings and anything else that I wanted to draw on it and change occasionally; especially with the holidays.  After everything was dry and finished, I used regular chalk to write a holiday saying on the chalkboard and hung it up.  I am not real sure how I like using the plywood as the backing because there are ridges in the wood and it proves difficult to make clean, straight lines and I will definitely be purchasing colored chalk to make things more fun, but for my first one, I am happy with the way it turned out.  I am sure I will change the drawings and quotes frequently.  Has anyone else made their own chalkboard??

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Gift Coasters

Below are a few sets of coasters that I have made and given as gifts to friends and family recently.  I know most of you have seen the tutorials on how to make these coasters but I will go through the steps with you.

Step 1.  Go to a home improvement store such as Lowe’s, Home Depot or Menard’s and buy single ceramic tiles.  Mine were $.16 each!  I buy the plain ceramic 4 x 4 inch tiles because of their smooth surface.  I have tried travertine tiles, but I don’t like the finish it leaves when they’re done because of all the ridges in the tile.  But if you like that look, they don’t turn out too bad.

Step 2. I use scrapbook paper so I picked out the patterns I wanted and cut them to the right size.  I wipe down the tiles to make sure nothing is on them and so the finish is smooth after the paper dries.

Step 3.  I put a coat of Mod Podge on the tile and apply the scrapbook paper and smooth it out.  After this step, I apply multiple coats of Mod Podge, making sure to let each layer dry before applying the next one.

Step 4.  After it’s dry, I spray a clear acrylic coat on top and let that dry so it sets.

Step 5.  Some people use cork for the bottoms of the tiles, but I use little round felt that I find at Wal-Mart for less than $2.00.

That’s literally all there is to these.  They’re quick, inexpensive and easy to make and you can customize them however you want.

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New Painting

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I have loved art for a very long time and still have my sketchbooks from high school.  I have a lot of canvases and paints and brushes and my own easel that I asked for for Christmas years ago that have been sitting in their boxes just waiting to be used.  I  couldn’t get the creative juices flowing, but today I finally decided to paint something for my bedroom because it’s so much cheaper than buying something and finding exactly what I want.  I have this verse tattooed on my ribs and it’s one of my favorites.  Here’s my new creation.

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