DIY: Make Your Own Chalkboard Paint

This one is actually a twofer, lucky you! First, I’ll share a really simple and quick recipe to make your own chalkboard paint, and second, I made a really fun and useful craft with it!

Chalkboard paint is something I’ve seen all over Pinterest for a long time now. I thought all the ideas were so cool and I always wanted to use it for something, but when I ended up at WalMart I found that chalkboard paint is super expensive. Or at least more expensive than I was willing to pay for it. So I continued to find and pin chalkboard paint ideas on Pinterest, all the while lamenting my lack of actual ability to recreate any of those ideas.

Then one day I stumbled across a pin from the Idea Room that linked back to a great post about chalkboard paint that you can make yourself. So I decided to try it.

It’s pretty simple, it just requires paint and non-sanded tile grout. The paint can be any kind (acrylic, house paint, latex, etc.) and the fun part is you can choose any color! That’s the best part IMO. :-) The non-sanded tile grout can be found in any hardware store. I got mine at Home Depot for about $4, and I picked up some simple craft paint at Michaels for about $3.

Make your own chalkboard paint

The original recipe says mix 2 tablespoons of grout with 1 cup of paint, but I wanted this for a smaller project, so I changed it all into teaspoons and quartered the recipe. 1 cup = 48 teaspoons, 2 Tablespoons = 6 teaspoons, so it breaks down to 8 teaspoons of paint for every 1 teaspoon of grout. (I even wrote it on the top of the grout box so I don’t have to do the math ever again!) Also, remember that 3 teaspoons is 1 Tablespoon, so if you double the recipe you can save yourself some extra measuring and use some Tablespoons instead of a bajillion teaspoons. Basically once you’ve got the paint and grout measured out you just mix it up really well. Make sure there aren’t any lumps or pockets of grout, and once it’s all mixed up you’re ready to go!

The second part of this post is the cool craft I made with the paint. I have loose tea in these little glass jars and I write the name of the tea on a Post-It and stick it to the lid so when we go back to the store we can buy the same tea again if we liked it. But the stickies keep falling off. :-( So when I found the recipe for making your own chalkboard paint I realized this was the perfect solution!

I washed off the lids of the canisters with soap, mixed up my chalkboard paint in a fun brick red, and went to work. The paint didn’t stick to the glass amazingly well in just one go, so I used a regular bristle brush instead of a foam brush and I did a bunch of layers. I painted all of the lids, then let them sit for about 30-45 minutes until they were dry, then came back and painted another layer. I did about six layers because each layer was making the color a little darker, and I liked the dark color it turned out to be.

And they turned out great! So now we just write the name of the tea on the lid of the jar. It’s awesome!

Paint lids of glass jars with chalkboard paint
Ignore the rest of the messy cupboard behind them!

The best thing about this chalkboard paint is that you can make it in small batches, and you can make it any color you want, so you can use one box of grout for hundreds of different projects! Have you done any cool crafts with chalkboard paint, or do you have any ideas about something you’d like to use it for? I’d love to hear about them; leave a comment or send me an email at practicallyfunctional[at]gmail[dot]com.

Also, does anyone have any good tips for painting glass, like a different brush or type of paint? I mean, the six layers of paint did end up working out, but there’s got to be a better way, right? :-)

I link up at these awesome parties!

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Hi, I'm Jessi! Welcome to Practically Functional, a blog about real projects that real people can actually do! You don't have to be a pro in order to craft or do DIY projects; Practically Functional is full of projects for everyday life that anyone can do, regardless of skill or experience! Whether you're looking for fun crafts, DIY projects both big and small, gardening advice, cleaning tips, or quick and easy recipes, you'll find them here! Follow the step by step instructions in every tutorial, and don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions! Make sure you follow along by RSS or subscribe to daily or weekly emails so you don't miss a single tutorial!

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  1. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah you're a genius and I love you. ^_^

  2. :-)

    You can thank Pinterest for the recipe (man, I love Pinterest!)

  3. Thanks for linking up to the Point of View! I featured these on my blog today!

  4. Wow, thanks so much!

  5. very cool indeed, I like the idea of being able to mix up any color you want, I actually have some chalkboard paint but haven't made anything from it yet! lol If you mod podge your glasses first, it will give your paint a 'tooth' to stick to better next time! waving hi from the hills of North Carolina :)

  6. Ah, thank you so much for the mod podge tip! I will definitely try that next time :-)

  7. Samantha - Home Dazzler says:

    So clever, thanks for sharing! Love your blog :)

  8. Great idea! I’m a big fan of chalkboard paint!

    CSI Project Guest Judge

  9. can I use this grout? http://www.homebase.co.uk/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?langId=110&storeId=10151&partNumber=354356
    I can’t seem to find any unsanded grout in the uk :(

  10. I love making chalkboard signs, I think I will have to start making some in colors other than black. I can’t wait to try it. I would like to make a cerulean blue chalkboard =]


  1. […] easily make your own chalkboard paint in any color! If you’d rather make your own, check out the simple tutorial I posted earlier this […]

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