Sunday, July 26, 2009


WHAT DO YOU do with an old, framed, hideous painting that you find at a thrift shop? Why... you make it into a chalkboard for your studio of course. I got so into this little money-saving project that I forgot to take pictures along the way to show you the steps I took. But it's really pretty fool proof.


1 frame
hammer & screw driver (if you need to take an old painting out of the frame)

1- 11oz can white primer spray paint
1- 11oz can chalkboard spray paint
craft paint - whatever color you want
1/4'' hardboard (the inside size of your frame will determine how big to cut this)
Gorilla Glue or some other type of *seriously* sticky adhesive
4 clamps


1) First thing's first. Whether you find an old, framed painting or just a frame itself, you'll have to get it ready to be sanded down. Knock out the picture that's set in the frame with a hammer or use a screwdriver to loosen the staples around the back of the frame and push the art out.

2) Use some sandpaper and rough up the edges of the frame so you can get a primer to stick.

3) Lay out some newspaper in a well-ventilated area. (I chose the backyard.) Use the white primer spray paint and make sure you get all the edges of the frame if you have beveled or decorative edges.

4) Let the primer paint dry for the time recommended on the spray paint can. Then you're ready to paint your frame what ever color your heart desires. I used some green craft paint in two different shades to accentuate the beveled edges. When that dries, follow up with a clear acrylic coating. I used Krylon UV-Resistant in a spray can. The matte finish.

5) Measure the inside of the frame and go to a local hardware store for 1/4'' hardboard. If you take your measurements to a Home Depot...they'll cut it for you for free!

6) After you get the hardboard, repeat steps 2-3 to prepare the surface for the chalkboard spray paint.

7) This is the fun part. After the primer dries on the hardboard, use the chalkboard spray paint and spray a bunch of even, light coats to slowly build up the paint on the board.

8) When the chalkboard paint dries, flip your painted frame so it is wrong side up and trace the inner edge with Gorilla Glue (or some other strong adhesive). Place your chalkboard into the glued edges, clamp all four corners, and let it dry overnight.

You're ready to hang up your DIY chalkboard masterpiece! Get yourself some chalk and an eraser and draw away.


On a side note, I also got to visit my best friend this weekend in her new apartment. Sarah and I have been friends since Kindergarten. We go waaaaaaay back.

I want to see your creative spaces! Send me links to see photos of your studios!

Sunday, July 19, 2009


SO HERE'S who I've been listening to in my studio on hot summer evenings while I hang up my goodies from IKEA.

Emily Wells - The Symphonies: Dreams Memories & Parties

Meiko - Meiko

JayMay - Autumn Fallin'

Joni Mitchell - Blue

Oh! And like my new chalkboard I made?

I know you wanna make one too. I'll tell you how I did it in my next post.

Saturday, July 11, 2009


SO......UH......where have you been? Oh, just enjoying the summer, taking late night walks with the fireflies in my cozy neighborhood, tending to my little flower garden, revamping my studio and....oh yeah *GRIN* this:

My new Janome DC2010. I just came back from Milwaukee Sewing Machine Company with this tiny treasure. I plan to make lots of aprons, pillows, purses, curtains and turn some of my creature drawings three-dimensional.

And the Singer machine I had gotten before, from that store going out of business - well, it turned out to be worth only the $25. I got to do a few things on it to see that I liked sewing, but ultimately, it had electrical issues that cost too much for me to fix.

Off to Ikea for the day. :)

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