Chalkboard Ideas – 11 creative ways to use chalkboard paint for any room

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  • Chalkboard paint is in the spotlight right now, and with good reason! Versatile and easy to use, it’s the perfect way to make a statement in any room in your home. Creative chalkboard ideas can transform any wall or piece of furniture to add purpose and personality.

    Aside from a traditional chalkboard on the wall, we’ve unearthed the potential for much more imaginative color ideas, from kitchen signs and cupboard door drawing boards to garden chalkboards – the possibilities with chalkboard color ideas are endless.

    Chalkboard ideas for the whole house

    Chalkboard paint is a great alternative to a bulletin board in the kitchen or can give the kids a space to get creative without worrying about marking immaculately painted walls. You can paint any clean surface with chalkboard paint, making them super versatile to welcome an idea to any room in the house.

    1. Paint a central wall

    Credit: Future PLC/ Jo Henderson

    A chalkboard idea is ideal for a family dining area to add personality and create a fun focal point. Use a spirit level and masking tape to create a wall surface as a memo board. Paint the area inside the tape with special chalkboard paint. Voila! They have a fun chalkboard right on the wall. Painting a chalkboard directly on the wall saves you the expense of buying a bulletin board and the hassle of hanging it up.

    2. Get creative with a bespoke storage unit

    CHALKBOARD SIDE KITCHEN STORAGE UNITS

    Credit: Future PLC/ Jo Henderson

    Try a tried-and-true IKEA hack to introduce a chalkboard paint idea to kitchen storage. In this case a group of classic Billy bookshelves are used to create a bespoke kitchen shelving unit. Turn a bookshelf on its side and then paint it with chalkboard paint. The interface becomes a practical family planner/shopping list/scribble board – something for the whole family.

    For convenience, it’s best to paint the exterior of the device when laying it on its side to ensure paint doesn’t drip.

    3. Give a hallway a central bulletin board

    Corridor console with panel painted above

    Credit: Future PLC/ Jo Henderson

    Turn a hallway console table into a focal point of activity with a creative chalkboard paint idea. As this beautiful example demonstrates, a simple white hallway idea can provide the perfect backdrop for a chalkboard idea that serves as a daily reminder of chores and to-do lists for the whole family.

    As the last thing you see when you run out of the house and the first thing you see when you return home, the hallway is the ideal place for daily reminders. It can also be the perfect place to write a daily affirmation to start the day on a positive note for everyone.

    4. Make a child’s wardrobe more fun and functional

    Children's room with cloakroom blackboard memo boards on the doors

    Photo credit: Future PLC/

    It’s not often that children are encouraged to draw on the furniture, which makes this idea all the more fun. Painting the doors or a bedroom invites you to do everyday tasks like getting dressed, doing chores, or reminding yourself to do homework. Just tape the outside edges of the area you want to paint. The area within the inlay of cabinet doors provides a perfect framed area for chalkboard paint.

    5. Paint the door a different color

    Kitchen with chalkboard wall and cream dresser

    Credit: Future PLC/James French

    If you’re looking to give a door more purpose, you can’t go far wrong with a coat of chalkboard paint to turn the door into an oversized message board. In this chic kitchen, a black accent wall already adds impact to the color scheme, allowing the black painted door to not clash with the rest of the decor. Painting the door with a chalkboard paint as opposed to a flat emulsion makes the door multifunctional.

    More than just a barrier to the space beyond, it becomes a generous space with additional wall space to jot down shopping lists and more.

    6. Add depth to a dark color scheme

    Open-plan kitchen/living room with anthracite-colored wall with chalkboard

    Credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore

    If your interior is already an on-trend dark charcoal gray or slate black, a chalkboard on the wall is an easy way to add depth, making it easy to jot down personal messages. Since the wall behind it is already dark, it is less noticeable and less intrusive in the room. Less chalkboard, more fun personal touches for welcome messages and conversation starters.

    7. Zone the garden

    GARDEN WITH CHILDREN'S PLAY AREA WITH BLACKBOARD SIGN

    Credit: Future PLC/ Tim Young

    What could be more fun for the little ones than creating their own play area in your backyard. Applicable to gardens of all sizes, it can pay to define zones so everyone in the space feels equally at home. A fun chalkboard sign is the easiest way to make a statement and add a playful element to the children’s corner.

    Simply paint a sheet of marine cardboard with chalkboard paint to create a generous drawing area to inspire creativity. For safety, make sure the board is securely attached to a fence panel or support structure to prevent it from falling over.

    8. Create a calendar

    Chalkboard wall with family calendar painted on the wall

    Credit: Future PLC/Dan Duchars

    Need to organize your family? Draw a chalkboard calendar on the wall in your kitchen or home office to create a special area that everyone can easily see. I have a friend who has personally followed this creative idea to make a family planner on the wall or for her kitchen – she now says she was lost without it! It turns out that writing on the wall is easier, so to speak, than a digital reminder of events.

    Use black and white chalkboard paint to mix different shades of gray for an eye-catching effect that’s easier to change from month to month. We Love Ronseals One Coat Chalkboard Paint (250ml), £8.09 from Amazon.

    9. Paint a personal touch for a family room

    Family room with chalkboard painted cabinets

    Photo credit: Future PLC

    Add a fun touch to a family room and incorporate the closet doors into the play element of the room by painting them with chalkboard paint. Otherwise wasted surface provides the perfect blank canvas on which to create your own chalkboard idea. So the kids can express themselves with chalks – and leave their mark on the furnishings of the family room without drawing on the walls as they like. Giving them their own space to get creative will ensure the remaining walls remain chalk and crayon free.

    You can also use the full height chalkboard area as a height chart for the kids to literally watch them grow.

    10. Focus on a feature wall

    Kitchen with chalkboard wall

    Credit: Future PLC/ Matt Antrobus

    A wall of chalk paint in the kitchen is both fun and functional, it’s more than just a wall, it’s the ideal place to leave notes for each other, keep track of invitations and write down your grocery list – perfect for busy families . Also, the finish is very handy for a kitchen as it’s wipeable, which is a bonus in a room prone to spills.

    11. Hug walls that can be marked

    Hallway with black chalkboard paint wall

    Photo credit: Future PLC

    The dark color trend, seen with the popularity of black living room ideas and black kitchens, shows how strong colors are currently setting the tone in interiors. But more than just trending, there are elements of using dark colors that can prove very practical. Take for example the use of chalkboard wall in the hallway – the paint gives the desired statement look, but chalkboard paint’s properties mean that it is susceptible to scuffs and stains.

    This idea comes in handy in high-traffic areas of the home, like the hallway. The added bonus, of course, is that you can write welcome greetings or label coat hooks accordingly.

    What is the difference between chalk paint and blackboard paint?

    The main difference between chalk paint and blackboard paint is that blackboard paint is specially designed to be drawn on with chalk and chalk pens and then wiped off. Chalk paint is more of a purely decorative paint, with the name referring to the chalky surface and matte color. The two are not to be confused, they have very different qualities.

    How do you apply chalkboard paint?

    Applying chalkboard paint is very similar to applying any other wall paint. Make sure the surface is thoroughly clean before applying. If you paint over a normal emulsion paint (matt), you can paint directly on the surface. If the existing surface is vinyl paint, wood, or metal, you will need to apply a primer.

    To get a good, even finish, you need to apply multiple coats. Always check the label before you start as that should give you a guide.

    Allow each coat to dry for 3-4 hours before applying the next. Let them dry for 24 hours. After drying, the chalkboard paint is ready to use. To remove chalk, simply use a warm, damp cloth.

    As a master of DIY and home decor, we reach out to our editor, Heather Young, to share her experience of using chalkboard paint to create accent walls in her own home. She tells us about her experience: “Chalkboard paint is very easy to apply and applies in a similar way to paint. I made a chalkboard wall in our family kitchen for notes and for the kids to doodle when they were little. I applied a premixed black chalkboard paint with a roller, a single light coat at a time. Once it was dry I added another coat.”

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