Friday, December 6, 2013

for a festive celebration table, i've got you covered. diy

posted by jennifer:

in my last post i mentioned a table covering i made (with the help of my children) for our
thanksgiving table.  today i wanted to share what i did.  i was so happy with how it turned out.   plus, it was economical which is a good thing, but didn't look economical which is even a better thing.

**how to make a chalkboard tablecloth**

you will need:
-a roll of brown butcher paper
     i used paint masking paper from home depot.  a roll of a million feet was like $9.00.  so
     i will be using the same roll until i am 95 years old
-chalkboard paint (i used rust-oleum)
     i had leftover paint from another project, and this used so little i still have leftover paint
-painters masking tape
     i thought it could  free-style it at first, but um, not so much
-a big ol' paintbrush

1. measure your table you will be covering, and if you want to wrap it around the ends of the table, don't forget to add several inches to the measurement.

2. cut your butcher paper to determined length.  it will want to roll up again, so find something to weight it down.

3.  using your masking tape mark off the area you want to paint.  i did about a 2 foot stripe down the middle of mine. but you could be creative here.  maybe placemat size rectangles at each persons place?

4.  paint in your masked off area.  i only used 1 coat, and was good.    let it dry, which here in southern california was fairly quick, but if you are in a cold climate, you might want to find a low  traffic area of the house for this.  the wet paint here was almost stepped on several times, a couple of times by me as i was yelling at the kids to  be careful not to step on said wet paint.  ah, parenting.... it  is humbling is it not??

5.  after it is dried you can start decorating.  i didn't wait for any curing time on the paint as i knew this was going to be a one-time use project.  i the project was done start to finish in about 1 1/2 hours. 
i used colorful chalk, you could go with standard white for a cool look, which is what i originally thought i was going to do...  but i didn't have any white chalk.  magenta (check!),
periwinkle (check!), burnt sienna (check!), chartreuse (check!), white (okay, with color we go... and i loved it. )

6.  so thinking about smudging.  i knew that if i didn't use something the sharp lines would start being blurred lines.  which would be pretty.  like looking through a kaleidoscope when you are crying.  but not the look i was hoping for.  i tried shellac at first, but it just made the chalk disappear.  so after googling it, hairspray it was. workable fixative would work as well.
i used extra on the ends where i was worried people would rub up against the chalk. and i wanted to avoid people's sleeves and shirt fronts from  looking like my 3rd grade teacher's butt  looked like after she was standing against the chalkboard... remember those days?  ha!

7. roll it up until it is ready to use. 

so that is it.  it makes a beautiful tablecloth.  it can be customized to any occasion or festivity.
and at the end of the night, when it is covered with grease stains, wine spills and water marks, you can roll it up and into the recycling bin it goes.   or is it the trash can.  i always am questioning the recycling rules. 

oh, and to carry the theme a bit further, i made place cards using brown cardstock.  i painted a stripe of chalkboard paint on it, stamped the first initial with acrylic paint, and wrote the remainder of the name with a white gel pen.  the finishing touch.



  1. Yeah, we carry those million foot rolls of paper at my store. Makes me thankful for forklifts every time I have to stock them...Thanks again for a great Thanksgiving.