DIY Outdoor Chalkboard

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard. Make it fancy with gold borders (spray paint). Screw on some brass hooks and hang $1 tin pails to hold the chalk and eraser! I’m back with another DIY post using the famous chalk paint. I actually worked on several projects using chalk paint for Lily’s birthday party this Saturday, but I will save those for next week!

Having a wall devoted to chalk doodles and ‘to do lists’ are all over Pinterest. I haven’t decided to fully commit to doing this inside my house…so that’s why I made a huge one for the backyard. Lily is a crayon lover at the moment so not knowing if she would use a chalk wall inside, the outdoor chalkboard will be our training wheels I guess.

We had a majority of the materials for this project making this very cheap, which always makes me smile (and Mike!). Here’s what you need:

Wood board (found at Lowes or Home Depot, you can buy pre-cut or cut to the size you want)
Sandpaper
Small towel
Primer (I purchased Primer & Seal 1 2 3 from Ace for $7.98)
Chalk Paint
Foam roller & paint tray
Gold spray paint
Pencil
Yardstick
Painter’s tape
Paint tarp
Plastic garbage bag
Brass cuphooks ($2.49 at Ace)
Tin pails
Chalk & eraser

I had a large piece of wood leftover from my DIY laundry room shelf just taking up space in my garage. To smooth the surface I used my mom’s sanding machine and then wiped all the dust off the board with a small towel. I sprayed a coat of primer to make the surface as smooth as I could.

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard.To keep the remaining painting as clean as I could I laid out a large tarp under the wood board (you can keep it classy using flip flops and a dog bowl as weights!). I primed the board in the front yard standing up against a tree. To prevent drips with the chalkboard I would recommend laying it flat. I used a small foam roller (that I found at Target’s dollar section months ago) and applied three coats of the chalk paint (check with your chalk paint for wait times between each coat- I allowed 4 hours). My chalk paint instructed a minimum of two coats and I added one more for better results.

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard.Using a yardstick and a pencil I outlined a two inch boarder for all four sides. I applied painter’s tape to seal the boarder (make sure you press the tape good to seal). I taped two garbage bags down to protect the middle of the board before I spray painted a gold boarder. I just wanted to make it pretty!

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard. Once it was dry and the tape and garbage bags were removed we screwed on the brass hooks (went with brass to match the gold boarder). Mike and I stood the board up to screw in the hooks. Warning: when you start to twist the hooks into the wood it will seem like it isn’t going in. It almost appeared that the hook was ruining the wood, but we kept applying pressure and the hooks eventually screwed all the way in (phew). The chalkboard is laying against the house in a corner on the patio and doesn’t required to be hung because it is supported by two walls (saved money & my sanity with this). We had two small galvanized pails in our garage that were found in Target’s dollar section. One pail holds Lily’s chalk and the other one holds an eraser.

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard.We got tons of giggles from Lily when we unveiled her fancy outdoor chalkboard. She created some toddler doodles and then had a field day with the eraser. Crayons don’t have erasers so making your doodle disappear was like magic to this kid. The chalkboard sits under our patio and under our outdoor fans, so the shade and breeze from the fans makes it a bearable outdoor activity for both Lily and her parents!

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard.
Total cost: $10.47 (only needed to buy the primer and brass hooks!)

Keep the chalk mess in the backyard w/ this DIY outdoor chalkboard.

 
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  1. kelsey commented:
    June 20, 2013 Reply

    Lily looks like such a big (2 year old) girl in these photos! Love this DIY for it’s cost-effectiveness and simplicity both in appearance and creation. Nice job Amy!!

    • Amy Romano commented:
      June 21, 2013 Reply

      Thanks Kelsey! Putting it to use at the party too! See you tomorrow xo

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