Project number two from the weekend was to turn a frame that Sweet Amanda and her mom found at a thrift store into a chalkboard. That girl is quite the thrifter! She found an amazing gilded frame in the trash that will make an appearance at the wedding and I think she paid $3.00 for this one:
The frame was in overall good shape. I believe it once held a large mirror and is made out of particle board. It is HEAVY! There was some damage to the front of the frame that allowed the particle board to show through in a couple of places.
Sweet Amanda plans on having her wedding program written out on the chalkboard as everyone enters the wedding chapel so she wanted it to be fancy yet rustic/vintage… just her style. I could not figure out how to fix the damage to the front of the frame without totally redoing the finish…so I repainted and refinished it. I sure wish I were more talented and could have just touched it up but it would have not looked right with my lack of skill.
Between showers I laid the frame outside and got out spray paint. I am not the best spray painter in the world. I tend to spray too much in one spot. I really focused on thin even coats of gold spray paint this time. I also had some shiny silver paint in the cabinet so I very lightly sprayed a coat of the silver over the gold.
The frame looked a little scary at this point. I had visions of having to call Sweet Amanda to tell her I ruined the frame.
After the frame dried and before the rain came, I brought it in to the Garagemahal. The frame is really divided into four concentric rectangles so I decided to work on applying the antiquing glaze one whole rectangle at a time.
Working with such deep detail on a large frame meant really working fast. Even as humid as it was the glaze dried quickly. I use cut up t shirts to wipe off the excess because the cotton really seems to pick up any puddles and it allows me to get into the small spaces. I have two t shirt towels going at one time. One is for the first wipe over and it is really gross, the other is for the second wipe over and is more clean. When the second rag starts to get dirty I demote it to the first wipe over rag and get a new second rag.
After I finished the entire frame, I went back over everything at one time with a fresh rag… really rubbing hard. Some gold and some silver shows through the glaze.
I loved the results. The frame really does look like an old plaster frame for $7.00 in gold paint and left over silver paint I would have to say the frame was a success.
The next step was to make the chalkboard part. Hubby cut a piece of hardboard to fit the frame on his table saw. We buy tons of hardboard. It comes in 4 X 8 by 1/8 sheets and costs about $8.00 a sheet. I use it to put backs on furniture we recycle, I paint on in like canvas and about a million other uses. I primed the hardboard with Kiltz primer before I started painting on the chalkboard paint. I bought Rustoelum chalkboard paint in a can to use and got out the foam roller and small paint tray. My advice is that if the chalkboard you are making is small, go with the spray paint version. The paint on version of the paint was a pain in the neck. I wanted the finish to be smooth so I rolled on thin layers of the paint. It took 4 coats to get the finish I could tolerate and it is still not perfectly smooth.
The picture above is after coat number one.
After the chalkboard paint dried over night I put the board into the frame. We were really lucky here, the frame had some easy to use tabs that made putting the board in a snap. I was pleased with the results. According to the directions, I have to wait three days for the paint to cure then condition the chalkboard by rubbing the entire board with chalk then wiping it off. After that it will be ready for use. I will make sure to post a picture from the wedding.
On the Internet there are several crafters who have posted making their own chalkboard paint by adding unsanded powered grout to regular latex paint. I may try that down the line.