Lunch and Learn at Plaid ... yes it is that time again this month! If you are new to The Plaid Palette, you may not be aware that here at the Plaid corporate offices we gather once a month and participate in a Lunch n Learn event. Employees from all departments enjoy each other's company, share a delicious lunch and learn about our various product lines through a hands-on experience; it is a win, win, win for all who attend!
This month we shared a baked potato bar complete with salad, rolls and dessert AND learned all about the NEW colors of Martha Stewart Crafts Chalkboard Paint. We also experienced first hand just how easy it is to create chalkboard art using the NEW Martha Stewart Crafts Chalkboard-Inspired Silkscreens and Erasable Liquid Chalk.
Want to know more? Let's get started ... I'd love to share our class project with each of you too! First gather all the necessary supplies: A surface to create a chalkboard, (ours was a very large plaque PERFECT for chalkboard), Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Chalkboard Acrylic Paint, (I offered three of the new colors - Ink, Oxblood or Gray), a Martha Stewart Crafts Large Utility Brush, Martha Stewart Crafts Chalkboard-Inspired Silkscreens, (we used Phrases and Bodoni Alphabet), and Martha Stewart Crafts Erasable Liquid Chalk. Some miscellaneous supplies you might need will be, brush basin for water, foam plate palette, medium grit sandpaper, while chalk, and a few paper towels.
The first step will be to paint our raw wood board with the Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Chalkboard Paint. I chose to create this sample with "Ink" which is a rich, deep blue. Unscrew the paint bottle cap, then lift to remove the heat seal, replace the bottle cap and you are ready to squeeze some paint out onto your foam plate palette.
Basecoat the entire wood plaque including the routed edges. Allow to dry.
Look closely below, as with all acrylic paints, the Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Chalkboard Paint had dried and raised the nap of the wood. See the rough areas? No worries, using fine - medium grit sandpaper, sand the wood plaque following the direction of the wood grain until it is smooth.
Reapply Ink Chalkboard paint and allow to dry.
Next the painted chalkboard surface MUST be conditioned prior to writing on it. You may be asking why or how do I condition? A painted chalkboard surface MUST always be conditioned because a ghost or halo of what you first write or draw will always appear if you don't. To condition, mark over the entire chalkboard using the side of a stick of chalk as you see in the photo below. Simple enough, right?
Then wipe chalk dust away using a paper towel.
Our painted chalkboard surface is now ready to be embellished with Martha Stewart Crafts Chalkboard-Inspired Silkscreens and Erasable Liquid Chalk. But first, let me share with you a pic of all three new chalkboard paint colors we used in class .... Oxblood, Gray and Ink. (Only Ink had been conditioned in this pic.)
Aren't the colors fun? New colors not show include: Classroom Green, Black, Arrowhead, Grape Jelly, Habanero, Vanilla Bean and Raspberry Ice. They will fit in all home décor styles! In our Martha Stewart Chalkboard product line, we have Chalkboard-Inspired Stencils and Silkscreens. For our Lunch n Learn we used two of the silkscreens. ... "Phrases" complete with "Welcome, Celebrate, Menu, LOVE, And, Congrats, At, With, The, Love (in a heart) and even an &!"
Or our folks could choose to personalize using the "Bodoni Alphabet" silkscreen complete with numbers a few embellishment icons!
For my class sample, I chose the "Celebrate" silkscreen from Phrases. I cut Celebrate from the other silkscreens and peeled the silkscreen from the backing sheet. You will want to keep the backing sheet for storage of your used, yet cleaned silkscreen.
TIP: A neat trick to ensure your word is centered on your chalkboard surface is to first measure the surface and mark the center with a piece of tape. Then find the center of your silkscreen and match up the two marked centers. Remove the tape before applying the liquid chalk. Press the silkscreen in place, it is slightly adhesive so no need to tape it down.
Prepare the bottle of Martha Stewart Crafts Erasable Liquid Chalk by removing the cap, unscrewing the lid, lifting the heat seal, and replacing the lid. Next, turn the bottle upside down and gently tap it up and down over a paper towel to begin the flow of Erasable Liquid Chalk into the sponge top.
Martha Stewart Crafts Erasable Liquid Chalk can be applied to the silkscreen using a couple techniques:
1. Dab the bottle up and down in a pouncing motion over the entire silkscreen (or stencil) until the design area is filled,
2. Lightly (with little pressure) brush the sponge top over the silkscreen like you were stenciling in a swirling clockwise / counter clockwise motion until the design area is filled. I swirled in this pic.
Next lift to reveal your chalked artwork! Immediately rinse the silkscreen under running water to remove excess liquid chalk. Never allow paint or Erasable Liquid Chalk to dry on a silkscreen.
I rinsed and dried my silkscreen and then continued embellishing with star flourishes on the corners! It was so much fun!
And here is the final project with a chalked happy birthday message, "Lucy is 2!"
If you enjoyed this review of our Lunch n Learn Martha Stewart Crafts chalkboard class project and want more, visit Plaidonline.com for additional project inspiration, OR visit my June 3 blog post here on The Plaid Palette to learn how to create a "Menu" serving tray chalkboard! I also invite you to follow Plaid's Facebook page where you can see photos of our corporate Lunch n Learn events! Give it a whirl, and show me your projects too!