Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Cheap and Easy. The best way to craft.

This next party tutorial can seriously be made for any occasion, or none at all.  It's just an easy craft for functional home decor that I happened to make for the party.  Actually, it's one of my favorite things I've ever made, no joke, because it's soooo cheap, soooo easy, and totally puts the expensive variations to shame.  My kind of craft.

Let's just start with the chalkboard, right?  I saw a post on Come Together Kids where they made chalkboard worksheets out of glue and construction paper.  I filed the information away for use at a later date.

When I was considering how to make a few signs for the party, I started to wish I had some cheap wood and chalkboard paint, as I was positive I'd have to settle for drawing on some poster board due to money restraints.  THEN, I remembered that clever little way to make chalkboard worksheets and realized I could do that LARGE scale!

You need:
Black foam board
White school glue 
Foam brush
White chalk

1.  Start with your board.  Place it right side up.  (I got the elmer's brand and it was about $2.)
2.  Squirt a good amount of glue right on the board.  (I used elmer's glue and it cost $1 - school sale!)
3.  Use your foam brush to spread the glue.  For the large size, you will want to work in halves - just spread the glue on one half first, 
4.  then turn your board and spread glue all over the other half.  (as you can see, I used a regular brush as I was out of foam.  It took FORRRREEEEEVEEEEERRRRRR)
Then wait for the glue to dry completely.  It shouldn't take too long.  NOW, your foam board will curl up a little.  If you are going to frame it, no biggie.  If you're going to use it as is, you'll want to put something heavy on top of it for a while to flatten it out a bit.
5.  Turn your chalk on its side and rub it all over the board to "cure" it.  Prep it?  Whatever.
6.  Erase.
7. Write!  

I couldn't believe it worked so well!  You really can erase and write and erase and draw over and over, like a real chalkboard!  Did you catch that?  That's a huge chalkboard for only $3.  

BUT, you can take it a step further and frame it out to hang.  Why not?
I found my frame at the thrift store for $1.  I spray painted it gold with some spray paint I had on hand.
7.  Place your board under your frame and mark where you will need to cut it.  Cut it out with a craft knife (by the way, so much easier than using a box cutter)
8.  Wrap twine around the middle of one side of the frame.  You can totally glue this into place, but I was too lazy to look for my glue and just used a staple gun.
9.  Do this to the opposite side, lining them up so they are symmetrical.
10.  Finish wrapping all sides and staple the ends of the twine to the back of the frame as you go.
11.  Turn your frame backside up.  Lay your prepared foam board chalkboard face down on the back of the frame.
12.  Staple around the foam board.  Stick to the very edges and make sure the staples go into the frame and not through the foam to the front.
13.  Turn your board over, rub all over it with the side of a piece of chalk and erase.
14.  Use a white paint pen to make doodles and designs around the border.  (I used an Elmer's paint pen I had on hand.  This is starting to sound like a sponsored post by Elmer's... hear that Elmer's??  Hello???  Want to sponsor me???)
15.  Attach a length of twin to the back between the two top corners (just staple it to the back of the frame), hang and write!


So the framing part of this project cost me $1 for the frame since I had everything else.  That's a grand total of $4 for a big framed chalkboard!  I'm seriously wishing I'd known about this back when I lost my sanity.

In the picture you can see I decorated it with a little mini pennant bunting.
I made it out of twine and washi tape - just folded the tape around the twine and cut it into triangle shapes.  I taped it to the chalkboard so I could pull it off after the party.

Since I cut that board down quite a bit to fit a frame I had in my stash, I was able to make two little chalkboards.  One I used by the favors to say thanks:

And the other I put in the props for the photo booth.  You'll see more of the photo booth on Saturday!

And look!  You can use your chalkboard for nearly anything!  (that's a little ghost that my 4 yr old drew, by the way.  Hopefully you can tell that mine is a spider...)

Next up?  Making "fan packets".  See you tomorrow!

*Be sure to check the right sidebar for all the fun parties I link to!

1 comment:

Christina said...

cute :) Just love chalkboard paint!!

Thanks for linking to "20 Below Thursday"! :)

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