Wednesday, May 18, 2016

How to Make Motivational Chalkboard Art the Easy Way!

I learned in my garage organizing post Organize Your Garage in Three Simple Questions that hanging and storing items high on a wall doesn’t work well for a short person like me. If I can’t easily reach it without a step stool I won’t put it away in its proper place.

That’s why the wall above my recycled cabinet workbench (read the tutorial on Condo Blues here) is blank. All of my tools and DIY supplies are stored low to the ground – like me! – in the workbench.

Since that area is pretty much dead to me for tool storage, why not fill it with some motivational DIY d├ęcor?


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I read several interviews from local resident Kelly Harris when she was on Face Off. (Which is the only reality show I watch because it is all about creating cool movie makeups and not about manufacturing drama between the contestants and judges.) When asked in interviews how Kelly learned to how to do  makeup special effects, Kelly always says her personal motto is, “Try. Suck. Get Better. Repeat.”

I immediately scribbled her motto on a Post It Note and slapped it on my computer stand because she summed up how I go about doing just about every project you read about on Condo Blues. My plan was to hang Kelly’s motto above my workbench for DIY inspiration when I hit a spot in a project that makes me sing the blues.


I had all of these ideas to make the Sign That Never Was that were too grand and labor intensive to motivate me to start what I really wanted to be a simple project. Does that ever happen to you?

Then I realized I already had what I needed. The cabinet door chalkboard I made to use as signage for my dog cancer craft booth now sitting unused in a corner of my craft room. What better way to follow Kelly’s motto than to try my hand at making her motto into motivational chalk board art and hang it in my workshop?



I miss you Blitzkrieg.You are still teaching me life lessons from the Afterlife.

Especially when I am not confident about making chalk board art. Mine usually looks like a small blind child doodled on a wall.

Using some tips from the book The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering: Create and Develop Your Own Style by Valerie McKeehan, I realized that the easiest way to make chalkboard lettering is to use a ruler to make guide lines for the letters and erase them afterword.

She also suggests using a pencil sharpener on your chalk so you have more control when you are lettering.  So that’s how you do it!


I included an affiliate links for your convenience because I found this book very helpful because it has chalkboards in the book you can use to practice the lessons in the book before you try doing it on the real thing.

I also used stencils and a chalkboard marker to make Try. Suck. Repeat.a little more industrial looking. I free handed Get Better, which I think could look a little better with practice – just like Kelly’s motto.




 It's not perfect but at least it is hanging on a wall rather than gathering dust in a corner on the floor.

I used a couple of wall anchors instead of nails to hang the cabinet door chalkboard above my workbench since the door is fairly heavy. Since I was on roll, I got around to hanging the other things I planned to hang in the garage. That task quickly steamrolled into building a couple of quick workbench organizers to organizer the pile to junk nesting on and in my workbench.

Husband joked that the neighbors can see my psychosis through the open garage door since it is hanging so high on the wall. Like they don't know we are nutso already. Silly Husband.



 I had the metal warning sign made after a friend gave Husband the beer sign I banished to the garage. It's a tasty Ohio brew I celebrate just not in my living room.

I’m not done with this area yet. I plan on building a simple power tool battery charging station to hang on the wall below the fun stuff since that’s the area I can actually reach over the workbench. Short girl problems yo.


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