Chalkboard Walls - Customizing Your Nerdvana

We've all seen the wonderful Pinterest posts about people using chalkboard walls in their homes to cultivate creative kids, keep track of menus, and to showcase beautiful penmanship that we could honestly never achieve.  Well, The Captain and I have fallen victim to the amazing chalkboard walls and decided to place on in our kitchen!  

Though you can find these tutorials scattered across the internet, I want to share a simple version with some warnings that are a bit harder to find across the internet's rose colored DIY glasses.

First step: Supplies!  You are welcome to DIY on the chalkboard paint.  I've seen tutorials on how to create chalkboard paint by mixing chalk with paint, but it's become so popular that it now exist in the stores.  The Captain and I bought Rustoleum's brand of pre-made chalkboard paint.

Supplies: Painters tape, roller brush, paint  small detail (edging) brush, drop cloth, paint tray, stir stick, and chalkboard paint.
Step 2: Clean your future chalkboard space!
Washing the wall is important.  It makes sure that you are painting on a clean surface.  Make sure your cloth is damp, but not soaked.
 Step 3: Painters Tape your edges! We planned for a wall from floor to ceiling to accommodate both adults and (future) children.
Tape off your area.
 Step 4: Paint your edges!
Paint the edges with your detail brush.  This makes sure you have clean lines on your edges.  It's a tedious process (depending on the size of the wall you are painting), but it is very necessary to avoid unnecessary touchups with your original wall colors when finished.
 Step 5: Cover the wall with first coat!
First coat!  Use your roller to cover as much area as possible.

First coat done!  You need to let this dry for 3-4 hours before deciding to apply a second coat.

After the first coat, we decided that we needed a second coat as our original green paint color was showing through, and some sections had better coverage than others.
 Step 6: Repeat coats of paint until you get the coverage you desire!
The Captain helped with the second coat.

Huge difference after the 2nd coat.  You can keep coating until you get the look you want, but be sure to let it dry 3-4 hours between coats.
Step 7: Texture the Wall! Sad news with this have to wait 3 days after your last coat before you can texture and use the wall!!  This was really hard for me, but I used the time to buy our chalk and key holder (silver item in photo below).  Before we textured the wall, we hung the chalk and key holder so that it would be attaching to a clean wall rather than attaching to the chalk dust.

After waiting a few days, it is time to texture the wall.  Use your chalk, on it's side, and cover the whole wall.
 Step 8: Enjoy the wall!
We couldn't wait to start using it.  We immediately made a list of what we need from Home Depot for our other projects! 

Step 9: Wash the wall, and truly shine!  Something to know for those of you that are clean freaks like me - you also have to wait one week before you can wash the wall with water.  So, you'll have to live with you wall looking like the photo above for a week before you can (literally) clean the slate.

  As you can see from the photo on the left, there are sections we use SIGNIFICANTLY more often than others.  The photo on the right lets you see what it looks like after you first wash it!

If I was going to give only one piece of advice to potential chalkboard wall people is that it will never look as "clean" as the pins on Pinterest.  If you use your chalkboard wall, there will always be chalk dust and residue on the wall.  I think it gives the wall character, but for some, this may be a major turn off! Have fun customizing your nerdvana; until next time...

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