I love me a chalkboard wall, who doesn’t? They’re so fun to draw on and useful to make lists and leave little notes but the trouble is it involves painting the walls. Some landlords allow you to paint and that’s awesome but for those who aren’t allowed – it can hurt your soul. I am about to share with you how to have a chalkboard wall without damaging your walls. Get ready because you’re going to be like “damnnn curtis back at it again with amazing ideas”. I know, I hate myself a little for using that reference too – judge away.


whatyoullneed copy


So basically the idea is simple – get something to act as the wall (plywood), paint it, and then hang it using a renters favorite tool Command Strips.

I used 1/4″ thick plywood because it is lightweight and will also hold up to the paint. It takes about two coats of paint to cover but I would do more like 3 or 4. It sounds like a lot, but I think it creates a better surface, easier to clean, and will end up lasting longer


Roll that paint and if possible do it in a nice dark, damp space that makes you feel like you’ll be murdered at any time and no one will know for like 2 weeks because it’s behind the space where everyone does laundry where no one goes and there will be cats starting to nibble on you even though no one is allowed to have cats they’ll just show up. These are the types of run on thoughts that occur in my head at all times of my life.


If you find the plywood has warped a bit because you just slabbed 4 coats of paint on it, try flipping it over and through a little paint on the back to even it out. My plywood didn’t warp so I didn’t have to, but this should work.

Okay, now it’s time to hang and this seriously could not be easier. Just use your 3M picture hanging velcro strips and place them around the corners of the board. I split the board up into two sections because it was easier to carry home from the store, but if you’re able to keep it one length, you could totally do that. I used the chalk ledge to hide the seam of the two boards. The chalk ledge was also put this up with command strips, but you could screw it into the plywood if you wanted.

This light is optional but I really liked the idea of having a dim light in the kitchen for when there’s no need for the big light to be on, plus it adds a little more to the black wall you have just created.

I cut a piece of dowel I had left over from another project – just about 3 or 4 inches in length – enough for a light to hang off of without the bulb resting against the chalkboard. I used a small screw and put it through the back of plywood into the dowel. Then just tie your light cord around and BAM you’re done.



I will say even if you can paint your walls, whether you rent, or own, this is still a good idea for a chalk wall because they can be challenging to paint over later on since they are such a dark color and the paint is thicker than regular latex interior paints. Soooo why are you still here? Go and do this!


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