Arts and Crafts, DIY

My DIY Magnet Board

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We bought a stainless steel refrigerator last year when the one that came with the house died on us. I had no idea that (most) stainless steel appliances aren’t magnetic. Can someone tell me what is up with this? Where would I put my collection of magnets? Where are all the ABC magnets to go?

They found their ways to the front and back doors, where they’ve been scuffing the paint.

Now that L has settled into a schedule and I feel like I don’t have to watch him every millisecond, I am itching to get back to making my house my own, like I began doing during my second trimester with L (nesting, perhaps?). First up was the bathroom mirror, which I’m still loving. I’m ready to tackle the magnet situation now. I have hopes of painting the backside of our front door a turquoise-aqua-some-kind-of-blueish-green color and I don’t want magnets scuffing that up.

My solution was to make a magnet board, like this one.

First, I bought a large picture from Goodwill. It was $7.99.


Then I went to Home Depot to buy a piece of galvanized sheet metal for about $10 (affiliate link). I made sure to bring a couple of magnets with me to make sure they’d stick.

Galvanized Steel

Next up was taking the picture apart. I tore off the craft paper covering the back and realized I would need a pair of pliers to remove the staples from the frame and a screwdriver to bend back the staples holding the picture and glass in place.

Using the picture in the frame as a guide, I traced around it on the piece of Steele with a permanent marker. Then I cut along the lines using Mister Boots’ metal cutters.

metal cutters and galvanized metal

I put everything together temporarily for G’s 1st birthday party, but didn’t secure it to the wall well since I knew I wanted to paint the frame and possibly cover the sheet metal in fabric. The boys loved banging on the metal with their hands, which drove me crazy, so I took it away a day or two after the party. It sat in a corner waiting for warmer weather so I could finish it outside. In the mean time, G helped me pick a color to paint the frame and I decided I wanted to cover the sheet metal in black fabric to give the illusion of a chalk board.

I finally caught a break a couple weeks ago and was able to finish this project!

I used the board as a guide to cut my fabric. I gave myself plenty of room on each side because I wasn’t sure how easy it would be to get the fabric back onto the metal once I sprayed the adhesive. I disassembled the board and took everything outside.

Galvanized Sheet Metal on Black Fabric DIY Magnet Board

I sprayed one side of the metal and fabric with adhesive spray and waited the amount of time the can suggested before sticking the two together. It wasn’t easy to do this, and it took a little effort to keep the fabric from wrinkling, but patience (which isn’t a virtue of mine) paid off.

DIY Magnet Board Adhesive Spray

Then I turned the metal over and sprayed the back so the fabric would stick when I folded it over.


Setting that aside to dry, I turned to the frame. I wasn’t sure if this little bottle of paint would be enough coverage for the frame, but it was! It took about three coats to hide the original color of the frame, but with every new coat, the more excited I got. It was looking like this project would turn out well!


As the paint dried, I took the fabric covered metal and traced around it on a cardboard box Mr. Boots had stashed in the garage from when we moved. I cut it out as a backing to the frame to keep the metal in place.

I assembled the board the next day, once the paint had a chance to dry completely, and OMGOODNESS was I so excited when it all came together!

DIY Magnet Board Playroom Finished

I am in love with how the green paint looks against the black board. Now I’m itching to redo the entire playroom!

DIY Magnet Board Playroom

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