Sunday, August 26, 2012

Dollar Store Chalkboard Placemat

I couldn't finish off my string of dollar store inspired "stuff" without making a little something for the kiddos!  In our house, chalk... especially colored chalk is a big favorite!  The Crib-Side Art Station I made last year is set up in our garage and it still gets played with almost everyday!!!  Considering I have two little ones under four and they both have the attention span of a nat... a year later and they still LOVE it, that's saying something :) So I thought having a small placemat version for inside could be a fun alternative that won't take up hardly any space in my junk drawer!  If you don't have one of these PLEASE tell me your secret because I can't live without my hidden disaster area filled with a little of everything :) 
I found these fun leopard print placemats at my local dollar store for you guessed it $1 each and I bought four, two for me and two I plan to give as a gift to a little friend wrapped up with some chalk and an eraser.
Since the vinyl side had such a fun print I decided to make these dual purpose, one side fun and the other function.  
So I left the leopard and instead painted the underside with spray chalkboard paint.  You can make your own chalkboard paint by mixing paint in your color choice with non-sanded grout which I love for bigger projects, but since these are small I wanted something quick and easy with no clean up so I just used the spray paint version.  I got my paint at Walmart, it's under $4 dollars for a can and it will be more than enough to do two coats on several placemats. 
Once the paint is completely dry, this won't take long, get some chalk because these are almost ready for your future artists to get to work.
Most chalkboard paint manufacturers recommends that you rub a piece of chalk (on its side works best) over the entire surface once to "season" it or get it ready.
Give the chalk a quick erase with a regular eraser or a damp cloth and that's it!
Fun and function!!!  Such a quick and easy project... just the way I like them :) 
And the result is really cute!  I love how well the bright colored chalk shows up.
My kiddos couldn't wait to try them out, big smiles mean big success in my house.
And there were plenty of those!
Oh and psst.... don't tell my kids or yours but this activity may actually induce a rare sighting.... sharing!!!!  I know it may seem unrealistic and these results may not happen in every home, but to my shock and awe it actually happened in ours at least for a few minutes so here's to sending you some sharing inducing, chalk filled fun too!


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