my ‘salsa’ chalkboard wall


It was early July.

I was trying to distract myself from the seemingly endless wait for travel approval to bring our daughter home.

I decided to start looking for chalkboard paint recipes to make a big chalkboard wall in the studio. I found several great tutorials online for making my own chalkboard paint, but I had two concerns. The first – I needed a lot of paint and most of the recipes were for small amounts. The second – I wanted a red chalkboard and I was concerned by adding things to a red base I would end up with a pink wall. I kind of just gave up because honestly at that point in life I could have cared less about a chalkboard wall. I just wanted my daughter home. I really didn’t care about much, my mind was not on paint.

Sad. Anxious. Bummed.

Then out of the nowhere I got an email from Benjamin Moore paint telling me they were releasing tintable chalkboard paint and asking if I’d like to try it. I was still feeling all the emotions I had been, but that email sure brought a smile to my face. Chris laughed and told me that only God knows how much I needed tintable chalkboard paint that day 🙂

MONTHS later, I finally got that wall painted and chalked.

The quote is by Bill Moyers. I’ve had it on the “About Me” page here for a while. It just seemed like the perfect quote to go in the room I spend time creating and just doing life with my kids. Here is the wall before the red. I liked it white, but was just wanting something a little more bold.

I chose the color “Salsa”. I think reds are the trickiest of paint colors. They can go pink or blinding so easily. Knowing I was going to cover it in a layer of chalk, I knew I better go for a more bold color since it would be softened. I went about two shades brighter than what I wanted the final outcome to look like. I am not planning on using a wet cloth to clean the wall, so the dusty chalk will tone the color down.

“Seasoning” the wall. Whenever you use chalk paint, whether on a large or small surface, you want to season it before initial use. To season it means to cover the whole thing in chalk. If you use the side of the chalk instead of the end it goes on faster and doesn’t leave permanent marks behind after erasing. Sometimes if you don’t season the whole surface you will find that there is permanent residue from the first thing you wrote or drew. I got the kids to help me with this task.

I posted this phone pic last week, but just had to include it. No, she isn’t walking yet but she’s getting close!

Sketches and fonts for the wall. My wall is completely inspired by Dana Tanamachi and my sister (what I would do to have their artistic skills!).

Then I began sketching it in…

For those wondering….Yes, I am sure the kids will smear it in no time. I’ll do touch ups on it, but it is a chalkboard wall…so it is not meant to be permanent. This space is for the kids and I to enjoy and be creative alongside each other. They will learn lessons in respecting my artwork, but I’m also not got to freak out on them if someone accidentally brushes up against it and smears a big section. Not a big deal. It is just chalk.

The studio is still a big work in progress. We need to finish the counters and add shelves. Then it is in desperate need of ruffles, doilies, lace and vintage fabric. It is currently feeling far to industrial and cold for my taste!

You can find out more about Benjamin Moore Chalkboard paint by clicking here. The website also has a store locator to find a dealer near you.

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