DIYdiy projects

diy project: magnetic chalkboard mirror

by Grace Bonney

these days i have a strong affinity for anything chalkboard related. it began with the vintage frame chalkboard i bought from gosia at blue bell bazaar on etsy (above, in my house), and continued with my most recent column for craft magazine about using chalkboard or magnetic paint (online here). so i was thrilled to see an email from christina at viva full house about her recent diy project.

christina found this gorgeous (and cheap!) mirror on craigslist and decided to use it to make something custom for a huge empty wall in her kitchen. she wanted it to be something sentimental so she decided on a magnetic chalkboard so she could use it for family photos and words. rather than use magnetic chalkboard paint (which can admittedly sometimes not be strong enough for heavy objects), christina and her dad decided to use the frame as a template and cut a thin piece of steel (which is magnetic) to fit the frame. then they painted the metal piece with chalkboard paint and updated the frame with some glossy dove white spray paint. once it was reassembled it was ready to hold court in the kitchen and keep cherished family pictures and words together.

christina was kind enough to share her project steps with us so just CLICK HERE for the full project, or click “read more” below. [thanks, christina!]


-Vintage (or new, depending on your desire) frame or mirror
-Thin piece of steel
-Chalkboard Paint
-Spray adhesive
-Spray or regular paint for the frame

1. The mirror was disassembled and the mirror and backing board were saved

2. The mirror that was in the original frame was used as a template in order to draw the shape needed for the sheet metal, Easyboard, and spacing/backing cardboard. All items were cut out of the original stock. The sheet metal was cut with aviation snips, the Eashboard and cardboard were cut out with a carpet knife.

**if you’re not experienced or uncomfortable with cutting metal, please pick up a sheet of metal and have it cut to size at your local hardware store, or hire an affordable handyman on craigslist to do the cutting for you**

**alternatively: if you’d rather not deal with metal and don’t plan on hanging heavy items on the board, you can simply paint or spray the original frame/mirror with chalkboard paint and skip this step.**

3. The sheet metal was adhered to the Easyboard using the spray adhesive. A coating was applied to both surfaces in order to get a good lamination and then a large piece of plywood with cinderblocks were put on it in order to press them together for several hours.

4. The sheet metal surface was re-cleaned and then sprayed with a couple of coats of primer.

5. The sheet metal was then sprayed with the chalkboard paint.

6. The frame was cleaned and sprayed with the spray paint using numerous coats in order to get a complete coverage.

7. After the paint was dried, the frame was sprayed with clear coat in order to obtain a shiny, clean, hard surface for the frame.

8. After the frame dried completely the assembly took place first installing the metallic laminated chalkboard, then a cardboard spacer, and then the original backing was re-installed using the original screws and staples.

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