How to Make a Chalkboard Wall

"To do list" written with chalk on a blackboard.
What You'll Need
Painter's tape
Paint roller
Chalkboard paint
Contrasting paint

A chalkboard wall is a fun addition to a child’s bedroom or playroom, and it can even be a classy and practical addition to a home office or kitchen, allowing you to write grocery lists, display menus, aphorisms, or doodles. No matter how old you are, being able to write directly on the wall is both fun and convenient.

Creating a chalkboard wall is a simple project. Many major paint manufacturers make special chalkboard paint, and your local home improvement store should carry it in a variety of colors.

Prep the Wall

First, use the painter's tape to frame the section of the wall you wish to paint, whether it's the entire wall or just a section. Thoroughly clean the area of any obstructions. This includes removing any nails or screws and filling in any holes left behind with spackle. Let it dry, and then sand the spot flat.

If your target wall happens to be covered in a glossy paint, sand the whole area a bit to help the chalkboard paint adhere more effectively. Alternatively, you can paint over the whole surface with primer before attempting to apply the chalkboard layer. If you do opt for primer, let it dry thoroughly before proceeding.

Apply the Chalkboard Paint

Stir the chalkboard paint, and then apply a coat directly to the wall just as you would any other wall paint. Let the coat dry for four hours or however long the manufacturer advises. Then apply a second coat.

Let this dry for a full three days, and then carefully remove the painter's tape.

Paint a Frame

To create a transition between the chalkboard and the rest of the wall, paint a frame or border around your chalkboard in a contrasting color.

Mark off the frame with painter's tape. Use a small paintbrush to paint the frame using the contrasting paint color. Let it dry, and then remove the tape.

Prep the Wall for Use

You don't want to hurt your brand new chalkboard surface by stabbing and scraping it with the business end of a stick of chalk just yet.

Before you use your chalkboard wall, condition it with a layer of chalk dust. To do this, use the broad side of a big piece of chalk and drag it along to color over the entire surface of your chalkboard.

When you have filled in the entire surface, erase it all with the chalkboard eraser. Your chalkboard wall is now ready to use.

Maintain Your Chalkboard

To clean your chalkboard wall, simply wipe it clean as needed with a damp cloth. After wiping it clean, condition your wall again by covering the entire surface with chalk and erasing it again, as you did during initial installation.

Consider installing racks or nails with strings to store the chalk when not in use.