Christmas Chalkboard Tutorial

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Perhaps it stems from my previous career 
as an Elementary School Teacher, I'm not exactly sure.
This I know, I love chalk and chalkboards and I always have...

As a kid, my favorite part of the chalkboard 
was watching my teacher erase and wash it.  
I loved the way it was like a clean slate!

My 5th grade teacher, Ms. Weigel (pictured below), had the most beautiful handwriting and especially on the chalkboard.  
She had really cool hair & style too, don't you think?

I used to practice writing like her as I played school with my small chalkboard at home.  Here I am, nearly 30 years later and I'm still playing with chalkboards!

Now, let's get started on this little tutorial…
To begin, I find it easiest to place my chalkboard beside me on the sofa with the top of board leaned on coffee table.  This is the most comfortable way for me, with the board flat.  Some people prefer to have the board vertical but I find that to be much harder.

Supplies Needed:  
chalk, chalkboard, ruler, wet paper towel and dry paper towel

I found a photo of this particular design on Flickr so I printed a copy and used it to look at while I drew my board.  I started out by drawing guidelines with my ruler, very faintly, where the words would be placed.  This helps your text stay straight and uniform.  It will also assist in keeping all the words centered.

Next,I lightly outlined the letters starting at the top of the board and then added detail until they met my satisfaction, then I'd move to the next line.  This seems like common sense but it's still worth saying… 
A good rule is to work top to bottom 
or you'll smudge up your work!
If you smush the end of your wet paper towel, it works well as an eraser to correct any mistakes and erase your guide lines.  You'll also want to use this to wipe your hands as they will stay very dry during this process (my least favorite part of chalk).

Okay, moving on, you can see my work in progress.

It's not perfect.  If it was, it wouldn't look authentic.

I could certainly use some practice on the Holly font but overall, I'm happy with the results.

I made a chalkboard in my kitchen (DIY Vinyl Chalkboard Project) and I write a favorite Bible verse on it each week.  I post some of these on my chalk blog… Faith with Chalkdust.  
Here are a few samples from the past month…

Here are links to my other chalkboard project posts
(click on the photo to open)

…& here's a link to my Pinterest Chalkboard "Chalk It Up"
There are some very cool chalk projects on there!

I'm linked up at…
The Idea Room
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  1. I share your love for chalk, Nicole! I recently scored this beautiful framed chalkboard at a thrift store and I couldn't have been more thrilled. I have it as part of my Christmas decorations in my living room for plans to do something similar to what you did. I got out the chalk and the chalk doesn't write on the board like a normal chalkboard. I wonder if it's chalkboard paint? Perhaps writing on it doesn't result the same way a normal chalk board does? I'm not sure but I'm so bummed and not sure what to do! Your board looks great!!!

    1. I have had this same experience with chalkboards before! Here are a couple of things to try: First, always prime a new chalkboard before using it. You do that by coloring in the entire board with a piece of chalk - I usually lay the chalk on its side and just swipe back and forth over entire board. Then erase it and it should be ready to use. If that doesn't work, then the person who made the board probably painted it with black paint rather than chalkboard paint. It's very easy to paint over it with chalkboard paint. Most craft stores sell it. It dries quickly and you can just paint it directly over the existing black paint. I have found that a sponge brush works best because with chalkboard paint because it leaves a smoother surface without brush strokes. One last thing to try is a different chalk brand. I have found that some chalk brands just don't write very well! Best of luck with your new chalk board. Let me know if any of these work.

  2. I ended up painting it and it worked beautifully. A chalk board artist I am not but I plan to take some of your tips and keep practicing. They add a little bit of nostalgic fun to the decor! Thanks!!!!