Weekend project: Create a blackboard wall
Updated: Oct 15, 2018
With a tin of Rustoleum blackboard paint and a few spare hours on the weekend, you can create something personal, useful, and adaptable for family life. I give you the blackboard wall:
If you look closely, you can see we have some magnets sticking to ours. That is because we mixed two packets of iron powder (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Magnetite-powder-ferrous-ferric-oxide-Fe3O4/dp/B00B29UWOC/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1539088971&sr=8-10&keywords=iron+powder) with our paint, to create a metallic surface that magnets could stick to. If you are going to try this at home, I would recommend you learn from my mistakes and:
- use the iron powder only in the top two coats, not the first
- apply the coats which have the iron powder in with a brush, not a foam roller.
I used a foam roller to apply the paint as I thought it would give a smoother finish, but unfortunately a lot of the iron powder got stuck in the roller and never made it on to the board. As a result, the only magnets which will stick to our blackboard are the extra strong ones you see in the picture (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Magnetic-Refrigerator-Whiteboard-Assorted-Attractive/dp/B01EOVACVW/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1539091295&sr=8-14&keywords=extra+strong+magnets). Once you've finished your top coat with a brush, I would just give it a gentle sanding down to get rid of any brush marks (and yes, this is going to mean black dust everywhere, so perhaps get someone to stand there with a cordless dyson as you sand).
We use the blackboard for spellings, phonics, displaying the kids' artwork (using the magnets), and for writing epic Summer to-do lists. This last one turned out to be a lifesaver when it came to moans of 'I'm bored, can we watch something?' over the school holidays.
Heads up: you'll find that chalk dust gathers along the top of the skirting board and floor beneath, so it's best not to attempt this is a carpeted area.