diy: bulletin board chic

Let’s just say I have a certain infatuation with bulletin boards (hence my Twitter background). I absolutely adore anything corkboard — it’s a great way to organize your thoughts, hang up your jewelry, keep in mind quotes that inspire you, etc. The list is practically endless. There is one problem with the typical Staples bulletin board: it’s pretty ugly. And I prefer my corkboard to be aesthetically pleasing.

Enter bulletin board makeovers. It’s quite simple to make your own bulletin boards or revamp one of your old ones: I’ve included both ways here.

Option #1: make your own!

Making your own bulletin boards is super easy and allows you to get as creative as you want with the final result. If you do end up making your own, be sure to go for a smaller one or at least have a piece of corkboard big enough to fit the frame you’ll be using. Also, I do recommend glueing two pieces of corkboard together if they fit behind the frame (just make the one closest to the wall a bit smaller if you need room for nails to hang the final result), as store-bought corkboard sheets can be a bit flimsy.

For this project, you will need:

  • Frames (I used a few 8×10 inch wood ones I picked up at a discount price at a arts and crafts store)
  • Paint (whatever color(s) you want your frame to be) & brush(es)
  • Corkboard sheets (I got a a couple 12×12 4-packs at Staples for $10)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors, newspaper for the floor, masking tape, frame decorations, etc.

I started off with these white and green frames I had picked up from an arts and crafts store:

I decided I didn’t really like the colors for my room, so I used this gorgeous metallic gold paint on the edges to create for matching gold and white frames. (Of course, if your frame is already how you want it, you can skip this step.) I did start painting the whole frame at one point — as you can see below — but a little white paint worked perfectly as a touch-up. From then on I used masking tape to make sure I didn’t get any excess gold paint on the white section of the frame and kept a clean line.

To fit the corkboard into the frame, I didn’t use a specific method, but I traced the relative outline of the frame on the corkboard and trimmed it with scissors, narrowing down the shape until it fit inside the frame. Since the cork was pretty thin, I then traced the cut sheet onto a new sheet so I ended up with two sheets the same size that I glued together for a thicker piece. I then glued this into the painted frame.

The final result:

I now have three matching bulletin boards that I’m going to put up next to each other to keep notes, reminders, and quotes in. And it was all pretty easy! (Especially because, although I’m crafty, I don’t like any projects that involve sawing wood, electric screwdrivers, sewing machines, irons, and the like.)

Option #2: upgrade!

I don’t have a photo of what it looked like before, but let me assure you: it was quite horrendous. I had redone it in the past (far, far in the past) by painting the corkboard background white and stamping primary-colored fleur de lis’ on it. And then I taped the edges with green electrical tape. Not so pretty.

For this project, you will need:

  • Old bulletin board
  • Paint (any color(s) you like) & brush(es)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Fabric (to match the paint)
  • Lace trim (to match)
  • Scissors, newspaper (to protect the floor), etc.

First, I stripped off the tape and then painted the edges with the gold paint from Option #1. Then I cut a piece of fabric slightly larger than the corkboard section of the bulletin board and used a hot glue gun to fold the edges over a bit (so they wouldn’t fray later). Once I had a piece of fabric to fit the board, I started by glueing down the top edge and then stretching the fabric to fit perfectly (it’s good to use a slightly stretchy fabric and have a final piece that’s a little smaller than the space you want to fit, so it ends up taught). I finished it off by softening up the gold edge with a little bit of lace (again, I just used a hot glue gun!).

And . . . voilà! A perfect place to hang my necklaces:

Here’s a close-up of the lace detailing:

What DIY projects have you done recently?

{ Images by me. Feel free to use — just leave a credit/link! }