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Home Office Decor Series #1: DIY Magnet Board & Magnets

Hello, and welcome to yet another blog post! I have been having a busy week so far, and was very tempted to default on my weekly blog committment. Then I remembered that the very purpose of starting my blog was to commit to at least one weekly writing session. Naturally, my first solution was to post a recipe, but then I happened to look up from my desk at my wall of crafty home office decor. Inspiration!

It took me months from the moment of conception to get the pieces on the wall. I was working on this only during study breaks, and collecting all the necessary supplies, taking measurements, planning the layout and coming up with the ideas took a while! The latter was the most time-consuming of all; I had to let each idea incubate for a while before finally deciding on it, and I ditched many an option along the way. However, I really like the final product, so no complaints. This is what it looks like now:

Office Wall Decor

I have decided to do a home office decor series that will allow me to write in small chunks and, hopefully, will not be monotonous for you to read all at once. I wrote the first three as one piece initially, then decided to break them up – so these are all going to be posted simultaneously. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the rest! To kick off this series, I talk about my DIY magnet board, corkboard and chalkboard. They are ridiculously simple to make, and the magnet and chalk boards are made of things that can be found in the kitchen!

This post talks about my DIY magnet board. As a bonus, I’ll throw in some ideas for DIY magnets that you can customize to match your colour scheme.

If you are interested in another item in the series, skip to that post: DIY Painted Corkboard & Thumb Tacks DIY Chalkboard & Chalk Tray Ink Transfer on Canvas Owl String Art

 Magnet Board

This magnet board is made from a cookie sheet that I picked up from the dollar store. It is a lifesaver for me because I am a very forgetful person and I constantly need to write things down. Several months down the line, this board is now littered with notes, all colour-coded by area of life – I have dissertation-related notes, other school-related notes, reminders for upcoming events, lists, you name it!

To make this, you will need:

  • Cookie sheet of your desired size, metal tray or other flattened piece of metal
  • Contact paper or paint (optional)
  • Washi tape (optional)

Steps:

1. Wipe the cookie sheet or piece of metal clean. If you are painting the cookie sheet, do it now. Paint thin layers, and allow to dry in between. Skip steps 2 and 3.

2. With the backing still on, cut out a piece of contact paper in the exact size of the base of the cookie sheet. The sheet I used had rounded edges; if yours does too, you can either round the edges of the contact paper at this point or use a paper-cutter or utility knife after you have completed Step 3 .

3. Carefully peel off the backing on one of the shorter sides of the rectangle of paper, align it with one of the shorter sides of the cookie sheet, and stick the contact paper onto the base of the cookie sheet. Peel away more of the backing as you move along the cookie sheet, smoothing out any air bubbles as well as you can manage. If you take off the entire backing at one go, it becomes very hard to avoid creases and air bubbles as the paper adheres to the cookie sheet. When the entire cookie sheet has been covered, go back over the surface with a credit card or some such hard plastic card. This helps to push out any trapped air between the surfaces.

4. I decided to line the inner edges with yellow washi tape to complement my colour scheme. There was a slight angle to the inner edges of my cookie sheet, so I found it easier to line one side at a time, cut off the tape and move on to the next one, rather than sticking the tape on in one continuous piece. This will depending on the shape of the board you are making.

5. The only remaining step is to mount your new magnet board onto the wall. I used mounting strips for mine.

That’s it! Enjoy your new magnet board!

DIY Magnets

What good is a new magnet board if you don’t have magnets? I considered buying a box of magnets from the store, but there were too many colours there that I didn’t want. When in doubt, make your own; so that’s exactly what I did!

{I have also been planning to make some more out of modeling clay, but have not had the time to do so. Rest assured that when I do, there will be a post about them!}

To make this, you will need:

  • Assortment of buttons
  • Acrylic paint
  • Hot glue gun (optional)
  • Self-adhering magnet tape (I used this) or magnet buttons
  • Masking or washi tape
  • Sharpies
  • Rubbing alchol (optional)

Steps For Button Magnets (pictured on left):

1. Paint your buttons in the colour(s) of your choice. You can also use Sharpies to draw patterns on them once the paint has dried. The buttons I used were plastic and it took about 4-5 coats for the colour to be prominent.

2. Cut out a piece of magnet tape and stick it to the back of the button. You can also use hot glue to do this for added security.

It is really as simple as that!

Steps For Sharpie Magnets (pictured on right):

1. Cut out a piece of magnet tape. Remove the sticker backing of the tape.

2. Cover the sticky side of the magnet with washi tape for printed magnets like the yellow ones pictured on the bottom right. 

3. For hand-drawn patterned magnets, cover the sticky side of the magnet tape with plain white masking tape. Draw a pattern on it with Sharpies. For a watercolour finish like the feather patterned magnet in the picture, spray with rubbing alchol once you have drawn your patern. Let dry.

4. Put the magnets up on your new board, sit back & admire your handiwork!

So there you have it, a great way to keep your life organized. Magnet boards do not have to be restricted to your office either; people also use them to organize their makeup, or even spices. All you have to do is apply the magnet tape to the back of your makeup boxes or spice tins, and you are set! If you want more ideas for DIY magnet boards, check out what these creative people have done.   Stay tuned for other pieces in this series!

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