Sunday, March 8, 2015

Christmas Chalkboards

Once again, Pinterest is a wonderful source of ideas for so many things.  I nabbed an idea previously seen here.  Come to find out it was a pin from an Etsy site.  I took the basic idea and ran with it as my Christmas gifts for 2014.  I used a variety of stickers for the lettering on the plates, different kinds, textures, and sizes, but I wanted the finished look of the letters.  I bought a quart of chalkboard paint from Michael's and plate chargers from both Michael's and Hobby Lobby.  I asked those individuals I was gifting this item too what their favorite Christmas colors were and I purchased ribbon from the various craft stores to color match what their favorites were.  Some were into the blue and silver colors so I used a silver charger, for most of the remaining ones I used a red charger with a rope edge around the outside of the charger, and finally I picked up a few shaped like a hexagon with pretty script details on the edges of the plates.

I painted the inside of the inner circle with about 6 to 7 layers of chalkboard paint.  I found out it needed at least this many layers to create a chalkboard surface that would not be scratched clean through the paint if someone pressed to hard on the chalk.  I did not tape around the edges, which might have created a more perfect circle, but I decided the unevenness added to the uniqueness of each plate.  Some of the plates look a little more playful and those were intended for gifts to individuals with children.  The candy cane ribbon at the left is one of those examples.

For some more elegant ones, I used combinations of burgundy, green and gold like the ribbon in the upper right and others I used the beautiful elegant gold edged and printed ribbons as shown on the plate to the right.  That particular ribbon choice had beautiful gold angels on it.  With the shape of the charger it also had the added bonus of being a little easier to paint with the chalkboard paint.  Inside the inner section of the charger was a ridge denoting the bottom of the charger from the sides and it was easier to make a pretty, clean edge for the chalkboard paint.

Additionally, I used some ribbons that had a burlap look. The one shown below has some pretty snowflakes in red and sparkles.  Most all of the ribbons had some kind of glitter or sparkle to them. One of things I did after all of the layers of chalkboard paint were on the chargers, I seasoned them by rubbing a piece of chalk over the chalkboard section so they were a little easier to write on the first few times.  Since the letters were all stickers they were easy to affix.  They just need some weight on them initially to cement them on to the plate.  I affixed the ribbons with hot glue.  I had to hold the ribbons in place until the hot glue set.

With each gift of the chalkboard I included 2 pieces of chalk in tiny ziplock jewelry size bags and easels that I picked up from the dollar store.  I think they turned out really well and were well received as gifts by everyone who received them.

I'm thinking that I could make some that would work year round for all holidays!  The chargers would be in a more neutral color and then have ribbons that would attach with a velcro tab under each ribbon.  Maybe ribbons for Easter, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays?  Hmmmmm...

Until the next time, Imagine, Create and Enjoy!

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