DIY Bride: Chalkboard Overload

I am a pretty cheap  thrifty person, especially when it comes to my wedding, or at least I try. I have a really hard time justifying a $20 shirt let alone paying for a wedding so where ever I can find a cheap way around wedding planning, I do it!

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Before I start, I’d like to say that I have a big pile of DIY projects in my garage waiting to be started and/or finished. The majority of this stuff here is wedding decor that we are going to jazz up, but some is also just random pieces that Iain and I have found on the side of the road and couldn’t leave behind.

We are having a shabby chic/vintage/rustic themed wedding, so it kinda works out in our favor that I am always on the hunt for a bargain. We decided pretty early on that chalkboards are a great idea for signs and will also help us save a bit of money on printing and paper, too! I’ll show you guys what we did, where we got it and roughly how much it can all cost!

What you will need to make a chalkboard sign:
1. A thrifted picture/window frame- I have a major love for thrifting so this is half of the thrill of making these chalkboards! I have a few from thrift stores, some from Facebook bidding pages, and others that I have found on the side of the road while waiting for my sister’s boyfriend to break into my locked car to retrieve my keys. For this, you NEED to see the bigger picture. My sister thought I was crazy for picking up this weird picture off the road (picture below), but what it turned into after a little bit of paint blew her away.

2. Chalkboard paint- This is the fun black, matte paint that makes the chalkboard into a chalkboard (duh). I have heard of folks just using black matte paint but I don’t know whether or not you can use a damp cloth to wipe away the chalk without it coming off, too. I got this from Hobby Lobby in the states for $9, but it is available at Michaels, Walmart and any general paint store in Canada for a bit more $$.

3. Chalkpaint-  This isn’t always necessary. I used this paint for other things and 1 frame, but I loved the way the frames looked without fresh paint! This paint is different than chalkboard paint so don’t get the 2 mixed up. This is used to paint the frame and give it that shabby chic look. I used an ivory paint, but you can get this in pretty much any pastel color. Again, I bought this at Hobby Lobby for about $10 in the states but it is available at Michaels. If you are doing a bigger surface, I would suggest going to a general paint store like Benjamin Moore. I know that you can get Chalkpaint in pretty much any color there, not just pastels.

4. Paintbrushes and pain trays- This is pretty obvious. Helpful hint: Use a small paint roller on the chalk board! I tried using a sponge brush and a bristle brush and they sucked.. The roller is the way-to-go! But, also get a sponge brush to cut in the sides and a bristle brush if you are painting the picture frames. These can all be bought at a dollar store for cheap, cheap, cheap!

5. Painter’s tape- It’s that green tape that is always there when you don’t need it and never there when you need it. DON’T BE LIKE ME! USE THE TAPE! I am very impatient and hate taping things off. I immediately regretted it the moment i got black chalkboard paint on my white chalk paint. Also wait for paint to dry before doing second coats or painting the frame after doing the chalkboard.

2015-09-26 17.54.27This picture just proves how much Iain loves me. (As i write this blog entry he is also rubbing my feet. Love him so much) Iain hates painting with a passion but didn’t want me to do all this work on my own, so he offered to help me! Love him!

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He was fine in the end

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My work station for the smaller frames was ironically on top of another side of the road pick up deal, thanks to Iain! (thank goodness for trucks, am I right?!) But that project is for another day.

2015-10-20 19.38.33 2015-10-20 19.39.28I painted on the glass on this picture frame. It used to be a little run down 3 photo frame, now it’s a chalkboard! I decided to incorporate gold into the wedding just because of this frame!

Here is the before and after of the ugly and weird picture that I found that my sister harsh judged me for. See? You need to see the big picture!

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One of my favorite frames! This one only cost me $2 from a Facebook bidding page. (Dear everyone, Facebook bidding pages are highly addicting. Know your limit, play within it) I painted on the cardboard behind the glass this time because I’m not entirely sure what I am going to do with it in the future. I wanted to write on the glass just to get an idea of what I was wanting this to look like. Still needing to work on my penmanship. Calligraphy class in the future!

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Also not too sure what to do with these amazing window frames that Iain brought home for me! These bad boys were also free thanks to a couple from our church who was moving house. Not sure whether or not to keep them clear and write on them with window marker or chalkboard paint them and write on them after? Decisions, decisions! I Also love the super old, cracked original paint. Will NOT be painting these!

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The amazing thing about all of this is I spent about $35 on ALL of the frames I made, including supplies! The vintage/shabby chic/ rustic look is in right now, and people are always asking about where to get them.. Save a few (or 50) dollars and DIY! If DIY is scary and you still want this look, I will be selling lots of my stuff after our wedding to make a couple bucks to soften the blow of the expenses for the wedding, so if you are interested in any of the frames let me know 😉

Final tip: Always keep your eyes peeled on the side of the road for some good deals aka, free. Spring cleanup junk days are your best friend DIY people! Thrift stores are great to find good deals and again like I said before, Facebook bidding pages. Hopefully this post inspires you all, not just brides-to-be to get crafty and make someone else’s junk into your treasure!

Happy DIYing!

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