Our truck needed a menu board that we're going to hang on the middle window. We also thought it was a good idea to make a sandwich board, that way people passing would be able to see our offerings without having to stand facing the truck to read the menu.
We stumbled upon these two chalkboards at HomeGoods. They were $39 each but considering that they were 1) already together and matched 2) cheaper than the other options I was considering (like building them from scratch with frames) and 3) adorable- Mom and I each bought one.
We toyed with a few ideas about what to do with them and settled on using a crackle finish to give them an old time-y and worn feel. I found some crackle medium at Michael's (Plaid brand). I was going to go with Martha Stewart's brand but read some not-so-awesome reviews. Mom has used Plaid brand products for years so we thought it was a safe bet.
I simply taped off the chalkboard and applied one layer of white paint. After the white paint was dry I liberally applied the clear crackling medium with a sponge brush and let that dry for at least 30 minutes.
While that was drying I set to work on my main menu board that we found on clearance at Hobby Lobby for $20, a steal. The texture looks like chalkboard but it's not so we bought some Krylon chalkboard spray paint.
I taped off the sides and gave the surface two even coats of chalkboard paint (this was my first time spray painting so I did have a drip or two, I'm not perfect, so I quickly dabbed the drip and went over it lightly).
After the chalkboard paint was dry I did the same procedure to the menu board as the sandwich boards- white paint, crackle medium.
This was my first time using crackle medium and it can be finicky! Only go over the surface ONCE or it will smear and look kinda goopy.
Yeah, kinda goopy looking at the top there... :(
I think they still turned out pretty well for having never done the crackling before.
Despite my best painting tape application methods, I did have some leakage. It mostly came off with some water with a q-tip but my perfectionist tendencies didn't stop there- I used some black acrylic paint to touch it up and look really clean. I figured we aren't going to be writing on the extreme edges and it should hold up pretty well.
My next step for the two boards was to hinge them together with some hinges I bought at Wal-mart. They were just simple, non-decorative hinges.
I thought I'd have to drill holes for the screws but the wood was soft enough for me to just screw them with a screwdriver. Just make sure the hinges are facing the right way!
I did buy some small chains that I was going to apply on each side at the bottom to insure that the board could only open so far. I tested it out with just the hinges and it stays up pretty well without them so I think I'll just save them for later.
I'm so excited to place this outside the truck, isn't it adorable!? Ian seems to enjoy it.