Tuesday, March 20, 2012

DIY Outdoor Chalkboard

There's nothing quite like a Pinterest Challenge to help a girl get her DIY mojo back!

On the weekend I tackled a quick and easy project for Max. An outdoor chalkboard.

Max loves to draw so I was really hopeful that he would love this, and he does! Once I let him loose with his jumbo chalk the only thing that could drag him away was the lure of the trampoline.

I was inspired by this project from the pinterest challenge.

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I started out with a 900 x 1200 piece of marine ply from bunnings and I painted it with some left-over chalkboard paint that I had from my kitchen chalkboard. I thought I was going to need three coats, but after only two it was perfect. I also painted along the top, bottom and side edges just to give it a little bit more protection from rain.


Try not to be jealous of my designer outdoor area (sarcasm). One day we will get there!
Because of where I was planning on screwing it into the fence I also added some extra bits of wood to the back of the board to help prevent it warping over time. I used liquid nails to attach it so that there wouldn't be any nails or screws getting in the way of Max's artistic endeavors.


Once the liquid nails had set Sean gave me a hand attaching it onto the fence. We just used regular timber screws (making sure that they weren't long enough to pop through on the neighbours side of the fence).

That chalky look is from where I 'seasoned' the board with white chalk.
We decided to hang it down the side of the house next to the clothesline. It's a part of the yard that isn't really seen, meaning that the chalkboard won't get in the way of the landscaping I'm (one day) planning to do.

Random Cooper photo :)
I added a chalk tin and some jumbo chalk and we were ready to go.

Max (and his cousins) absolutely love it!



Like I said, it was really easy and it was super cheap too:

Marine Plywood -  $10.50
Chalkboard paint - $0 (left-over from another project)
Timber Scraps - $0 (left over from a retaining wall we built)
Screws - $0 (from the massive tub of screws we have in the garage
Chalk tin - $4 from a dollar store
Chalk - $6 (but you can definitely get it cheaper)
Total - $20.50 (if you had to buy everything you'd probably be looking at around $35 - $40 at the most).

Probably the easiest DIY I've done to date!

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My entry into Just Something I Whipped Up sponsored by Appliances Online and the Bosch Washing Machines


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33 comments

  1. I love this! You are making me want to get some more projects done- always so inspiring. =)

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    1. Thanks Melanie, don't beat yourself up if you're not getting much done at the moment though!!

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  2. LOVE it! I am doing a chalkboard segment on my local news on Wednesday:-0 I LOVE chalkboard!

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  3. How fun! This could inspire them to be teachers one day! =0) Thank you so much for stopping by Bella Nest! I'm your newest fan!

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    1. I never thought of that Holly!! Thanks for dropping in :)

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  4. This is a cute idea. My grandson writes on our patio and this would keep the chalk off the bottom of feet, shoes and paws.

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    1. Thanks Tina, chalk on paws sounds very cute :)

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  5. I think this is such a fantastic idea. Do you have any idea how the chalk paint will weather?

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    1. Thanks Shiloh. I'm not sure yet about how it will weather, maybe worse case scenario I will give it a fresh coat of paint every six months.

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  6. This is so fun, I will have to do one for my Maks as soon as walking doesn't make me tired:)

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    1. I remember that feeling all to well! I'm sure Maksi won't mind waiting a month or so ;)

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  7. this is SOOO cute! i love it!
    {love} lauryn @ lovenotesbylauryn.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks Lauren, I was just checking out your 'spread the love' linky party, there are some gorgeous projects in there :)

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  8. I am so going to have to get round to doing this. No excuses now that I have read this post and you have shown how easy and inexpensive it is to do. Might be our project for this weekend! Thanks for posting, Tash

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    1. I would love to see it when you've made one!!

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  9. I love it!! I have been wanting to do one too for Brian. Saw the idea on another blog I read. If you start selling your creations you'll have to put me down for one of these and one of the height charts!!

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    1. Thanks Brooke :) It really was super easy, let me know if you give it a go!

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  10. Such a great idea! My jobby job is assessing child care centers. I would love to see more of these on playgrounds!!

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    1. Thanks Elyse, I'm sure they would be a big hit at daycare!

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  11. great job,,but wondering how you protect it from the weather..like snow/rain?

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    1. Hiya, thanks for your comment. To be honest I don't do anything to protect it, but I do live in Queensland Australia so we don't really get a lot of extreme weather. It's been out there for a little over two months now and so far it's holding up really well. I imagine I will just need to give it a fresh coat of chalkboard paint every 6 months or so. xx

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  12. Tamsyn, after seeing your comment on my blog I found myself perusing yours for the past half hour :) I'm in love with this idea! How fun!

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    1. Thanks Ashli, it was such a fun project and Max still loves using it :)

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  13. I cannot seem to find marine grade plywood for less than $50. Where did you find it for $10.50?
    Thanks!

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    1. Hi Teresa, I'm in Australia and I found it at bunnings (a local hardware store).

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  14. We are considering doing an outdoor chalkboard on some fence sections at our weekday preschool. Is your outdoor fence chalkboard still holding up? How is it holding in the weather over time?

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    1. Hi Brenna. it's holding up quite well. Every six months or so I add another coat of paint and that's about it. I hope the preschool kids love it just as much as Max does :)

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  15. Hi there, i just found your blog because I am looking to make an outdoor chalkboard for my new playground at kindy. I was wondering how your chalkboard has weathered and wanted to let you know it was so nice to read another Aussie bloghttp://niccolaontuesday.blogspot.com.au/2013/06/colour-mixing.htm

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    1. Hi Nicola, I just had a look at your log, so many great ideas for little ones!! The chalkboard did well for the first year (with a top up coat of paint after 6 months), recently though its started to get cracks in the board. I still think for the price it's worthwhile though seeing as it lasted almost 18 months :)

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  16. Thanks so much for the feedback. Niccola

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  17. Wonderful idea! Thanks for sharing. Is there an easy way to hang on the fence? I'm a single mom and not very handy. : /

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  18. Wondering where you got that clothes line!

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