Monday, November 11, 2013

DIY Transitional Greek Key Chalkboard

Happy Veterans' Day y'all!!! I am so grateful for all of the brave men, women and their families who sacrifice so much for our freedoms... We should never take our veterans for granted...ever. If any of you are reading this post, I am grateful from the bottom of my heart. 

As you all know, I have been making some "transitional" updates to our home. Transitional design is a harmonious blend of both traditional and contemporary design. I especially love seeing traditional form done in contemporary materials or patterns and visa-versa. This DIY, Greek Key chalkboard is a perfect example as being transitional. It is a traditional motif on a simple, non-fussy board.  Because of its clean lines and geometric pattern, many people (nowadays) associate the Greek Key with modern decor.  It is  however, one of the worlds oldest design motifs and was born in ancient China....just kidding, in Greece (obviously). 

I kept this chalkboard super simple and placed it next to an over-the-top, antique, French wall sconce to add contrast. By the way, how fantastically beautiful is this sconce?!?!?! I scored it at European Vintage Chic in Landstuhl, Germany. Before I show you our 1,984th living room re-reveal,  I wanted to take you through some tutorials of how I made it all happen with using 98% of things I already had. The sconce and supplies to make this chalkboard were the only things I purchased. 

While "pinning" I found a tutorial for this fabulous chalkboard on the brilliant blog, Salvage Savvy. I had to make one, too. 
The first thing we did was purchased an inexpensive piece of plywood from our local German hardware store. This pre-cut size happened to fit perfectly in the space we were planning on using it. You could however, make this chalkboard in ANY size you want. Simply adjust your Greek key dimensions based on what looks best on the size of your piece of wood. 
Next, I filled in the natural wood ridges with wood putty, then painted the entire piece white including the sides. My sweet husband helped me mark and tape off the pattern. We used inexpensive painter's tape (we will NEVER do that again, next time we will get a pricier one) that was one inch thick. The outside borders were two inches wide all the way around. 

Once the tape was down, I rolled on some of my homemade chalk paint. You can get the recipe here, or simply use the store-bought kind.
When I removed the tape, this is what happened... ugh.

Because I was being my typical frugal self, I had to spend an hour or so cleaning the lines up which completely cut into my happy hour...NOT COOL! BUY.QUALITY.TAPE. Ok, enough tape preaching. I seasoned my chalkboard by lightly rubbing chalk side ways on it to give it a "worn" look and washed it off with a wet rag. It was now prepped and ready to write on! I found a French love-quote online so I could appear to be "worldly" and Bam, it was done! I am completely pleased with how this corner of our room turned out. I love how swanky it looks at night when the sconce is all lit up! 

And this is how this corner looks through the eyes of a hipster...

Ok, I am off to do some more DIY projects. What are you working on today??


  1. HATE when the tape stinks. But it looks great!

    1. Right??? It is the worst! From now on I will be a "high end" tape shopper ;)

  2. I am totally lusting over the French wall sconce. I have been searching for a couple unique lighting pieces for my places since the overhead lighting is so harsh and lighting has become a necessity now that it is dark by 4pm. Unfortunately I am having horrible luck finding anything unique and semi reasonable in price.

    1. I hear ya girl! it is so dark here too and our barn gets NO light :( I find the best deals at flea markets!!! They have amazing pieces!!

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Thanks for the lovely comments! Each and everyone means so much to me! xo

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