DIY College Room Message Clipboards

Supplies set out on the floor

With new students moving in on Friday, we thought it would be helpful to share a cheap and easy DIY project for some apartment decor. Clipboards are a fun item to repurpose into wall decor, especially if you happen to have one laying around or in storage. Here is a full list of supplies that you need for this project, but you could also use paint, stickers or other decorative craft supplies to dress them up!

  • Clipboard (We used 3, just to try different designs, but 1 is fine)
  • 1 or more notepads
  • Washi tape (in Union red, of course!) We had to get ours online through Etsy.
  • Hot glue gun and glue stick
  • Blue painter’s tape
  • Chalkboard spray paint (You can also brush this on, but spraying avoids brush marks in the finished product)

Now that you’ve got your supplies, let’s get down to business. This only takes about an hour, and that’s a leisurely hour complete with trips to the kitchen for coffee and a little Instagram perusing.

Clipboards taped off using painters tape to cover areas not to be painted.

First, you want to tape off your clipboards for painting. Choose where you want the chalkboard to be and tape everything else. The one with the diagonal lines of tape is a little trickier, so we did the washi tape first on that one (not pictured). Try to press the tape down pretty well so there isn’t any bleeding. You can also use a piece of thick paper to cover a large portion, so that you don’t use as much tape, just make sure you tape the edge down.

Applying the chalkboard paint using a spray can

Spray your chalkboard paint outside or in a very well-ventilated area. We recommend finding a sidewalk and laying out cardboard or something similar to paint on. We don’t recommend spraying directly on concrete, since you can’t clean that up easily, or on grass.

Applying the washi tape

Boards shown with washi tape and chalkboard paint applied

Apply your washi take when your paint dries. Be creative with this! The one with diagonal lines was just done spontaneously, so you don’t have to follow that design exactly. You could also paint different areas if you prefer bigger sections of chalkboard. The tape at the edge of the chalkboard paint helps cover any bleeding that might have occurred (confession: we had bleeding).

Hot glue notepads to clipboards

Finally, hot glue any notepads, post-its, pockets, calendars, etc., that you want to have on your wall. The possibilities are endless! Before you write on your chalkboards, you’ll want to run some chalk over them and then erase it once. This is just a preparation step, and we know from experience that you can use a paper towel if you lose your eraser.

Applying the chalk to prepare the board
Finished message boards

And there you have it! These are perfect for leaving notes for your roommates, displaying your schedule or even some fun photos of you and your friends at a basketball game. Be sure to keep that Union school spirit alive, and let everyone know how much you love your Bulldogs!

To celebrate all of our new students coming in, we are having a room decor contest over on Pinterest. If you’re a Union student, enter this contest for a chance to win these 3 clipboards plus a $10 Barefoots card!

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