I believe that there is such a thing as too much chalkboard. It is seriously everywhere nowadays. But I do love me a nice big chalkboard, and when I saw this image on this blog post, I knew it had to happen. (Side note, it’s hard to express how much I love the photographer in that picture. I have had a huge girl crush on here ever since I read this post of hers last year after googling “want to quit photography”. She’s seriously amazing.)
But back to chalkboard. I knew I wanted one, I knew I wanted it outside. If you’re on Pinterest, you know that that place is lousy with chalkboard paint projects. However, when Nate hit up the home deeps for me, they only had a paint made for interior use. And only in a small can. And since I knew I wanted our outdoor chalkboard to be MASSIVE, I returned that bitty little can and asked the google gods for a solution.
They did not disappoint. A friend of mine had pinned a recipe for diy outdoor chalkboard paint. There is a whole, involved tutorial here, and thank god for the people that have the wherewithall to take pictures as they do projects, but I read it and absorbed the basic concepts, and then just winged it. She has you measuring out amount of unsanded grout per cup of paint- I just took a gallon of flat black exterior paint and dumped in an entire small container of unsanded grout. I was just proud of myself that I’d actually taken the time to prime the board.
And by “I took the time”, I really mean “I made the children do it.” In their underpants. Because 1. It was hot, and 2. Paint on clothes=ugh.
Once the entire board was fully primed (and yes, I did actually help.) and dried (which took like a second because it was a million degrees out) (okay I’m exaggerating. It wasn’t a million degrees. But it was the Canadian equivalent. Which means it was like 80. I know, pathetic. We wilt. Back in Virginia we called this “April” and now we’re just totally acclimated to the cold.)
Ugh. Shut up with the parenthetical thoughts.
Then we painted it.
We put on a whole bunch of coats, the tutorial I was following said to do 5, I think we did about that many. I did the last two coats because the girls lost interest and also because I wanted them to be semi-neat. The coats, not the girls. The girls were a painty lost cause at that point.
By this time, everyone was hot and cranky and hungry and so we ordered a pizza and headed inside to play some MegaMan with Daddy for a little while. I took advantage of the relative calm and as I mentioned, did up the final two coats. Nate came out and helped me hang the board (that he had custom cut to fit perfectly in the one section of the fence) and voila. Chalkboard in the backyard.
So far, it works great to write on. Erasing seems a bit trickier; since the surface isn’t totally flat it works best to wipe it clean with a rag. I’ll be interested to see how it holds up over time.
p.s. How great does the butterfly feeder look hanging up there on that hook? (side note: when referring to a hook, try to avoid the temptation to personify it by added an -er. I know it’s what kids do, call things by what they do- like a rag is a wiper, a gun is a shooter, a hanger is…well. A hanger. But when you say “Daddy went to Home Depot to pick up a hooker” it just… doesn’t sound right.)
In all honesty, I haven’t seen an influx of butterflies yet, but I guess the summer is still young. Maybe word hasn’t gotten out yet.
In the meantime- there will be much chalkboarding. I cannot wait to play Pictionary on this sucker.