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Sunday, August 7, 2011

CHEAP Elmer's glue crackle chalkboards

Dear Faithful Readers - Here's a wonderful way to shabby up some simple frames for some very cool looking chalkboards. I' ll soon be back to regular posting now that I've finished chemo and radiation and the side effects are diminishing.

In the meantime, enjoy. It's simple and cheap and has a big WOW factor. You can do this!!



I used this super simple but effective process on some chalkboards awhile back, and here's the tutorial. You'll love it. You'll want to crackle something for sure. I love this cheap crackle technique! It seems like magic every time I use it and did I mention that it was cheap? Holy cow, with Elmer's school glue 4 for $1 right now, I have stocked up big time.

I started out with cupboard doors from a local bargain builder's supplyat $1 each. After spray painting them flat black (which saves you money on the expensive chalkboard paint) I spread the glue on really thick. I did not use a brush for this but laid a nice line of glue around the frame and spread it with my fingers. You are not looking for an elegant finish here, you want a nice layer of glue on your intended crackled target. Now, wait til it gets tacky. DO NOT LET THE GLUE DRY, the glue MUST be moist when you do the next step.

Taking plain old acrylic craft paint, load up your brush and paint, in one direction only, a nice thick coat of color. Do NOT go back and try to touch up and at this point and do NOT go back and forth. One direction, one swipe, with a light touch. You want a nice layer of paint on top of the still moist glue layer. The crackle effect will begin almost immediately and within a few minutes you will see a great aged patina bloom right before your eyes. The picture above was taken within 5 minutes of painting.


Crackle, baby!

It does not matter if your paint goes on thick and thin, as this effect looks much better with a bit of uneven paint. Look at that, it makes me smile every time I do this. If you have some spots you have to touch up, use a smaller paint brush and a light touch and go in the same direction as before but lightly, lightly. At this point it is very easy to drag the paint and the glue and make a big non crackled spot. If this does happen, let it dry, add more glue and repaint with a gentle hand. This technique is very forgiving.

If you have perhaps got distracted by kids, pets, some kitchen disaster, life and your glue has dried, don't worry. Just add more glue and go on from there. I've done this dozens of times and this technique has lots of wiggle room.


Oooh, ahhh. I like the white on black, love the black on white and ADORE the turquoise on white. Gorgeous, just gorgeous. Let your paint and glue dry thoroughly before you seal the crackled edges with clear acrylic. I added a thin layer of umber glaze before I sealed mine. Then paint the centers with chalkboard paint. Wait 24 hours or close to it if you are impatient like me ;0) and season the chalkboard with a layer of chalk, wipe it off and voila! Easy peasy crackle framed chalkboard, baby!



My FAVORITE board was the red on black, it was stunning and of course it was the first one we sold at the Artwalk. Now I'll have to make another. Good thing I stocked up on Elmer's glue!

I'm linking this up to Donna's Funky Junk Chalkboard Party. Be there or be square!

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special