Here’s how to make a beautiful thrift store frame chalkboard from all of those beautiful frames you see on old paintings at thrift stores and garage sales!
This thrift store frame project is one that I’ve wanted to do for quite a long time. I always see amazing frames on old paintings at the thrift store and I always think that they would make great chalkboards. I’m never quite sure though as to just how to execute that whole process successfully so that I end up with a nice, neat final product.
For the record, if I find a beautiful hand painted piece of art at a thrift store, I keep it as-is and don’t ruin it by turning it into a chalkboard. This project is more for those cheap mass-produced prints you find that have a really neat frame. So don’t go getting mad at me now for destroying someone’s art! 🙂
I’ve actually attempted this project before with a bit of a success, but I was really looking for a better way to make my chalkboards. I have this really big chalkboard in my living room that you may have seen before and it’s served me well over the last few years, but it wasn’t ideal. To make this one, I had simply painted right over the glass of a large painting with chalkboard paint. It held up pretty well for awhile, but after a few years the paint started to chip away, revealing bits of shiny glass under the chalkboard paint.
I knew that I’d ideally like to cut a piece of wood to go in the frame. I just couldn’t think of a nice, strong, clean-looking method to hold the wood in place from the back of the frame.
That’s where Gorilla Tape comes in!
Making My New Thrift Store Frame Chalkboard
I started out by carefully removing the old glass from the frame. There was papery tape holding the glass and cardboard backing in place. There were also a whole bunch of staples, so I removed all that.
Next, I cut a piece of super smooth MDF to size and painted it with two coats of chalkboard paint.
Then, I painted the old frame white and distressed it, just because that was the kind of look I felt like doing at the moment. 🙂
Finally it was time for the moment of truth! I put the chalkboard-painted MDF in place, along with the original cardboard backing that was behind the glass and then carefully taped it in securely using the Gorilla Tape!
It held everything perfectly in place!
I love this option because it’s quick, but still really tidy and professional-looking. I also really like the it removed the need for all of those staples. I just taped it in place and I was done! The Gorilla Tape also holds up to just about anything including moisture and temperature changes outside! So if I want to use my chalkboard out on the deck, I can!
I used my new chalk lettering skills that I learned a few months ago to quickly add a cute message. Every chalkboard needs a cute message. 🙂
I can definitely see some serious thrift store frame chalkboard making coming up in my future. The Gorilla Tape sticks to smooth, rough, or uneven surfaces so I’m all set no matter what type of frame I find! A unique custom chalkboard, whether it’s giant like this one, or just tiny, is so useful to have in your home. I think they make great homemade gifts too!
Make sure you enter this great giveaway from Gorilla Tape as well!
Gorilla Tape $250 Home Depot Gift Card Giveaway
Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.