Friday, June 21, 2013

Princess Crown Dry Erase Board

The girls love to draw so I wanted to incorporate a large drawing space in the playroom for them to express themselves. First I thought of doing a chalkboard with chalkboard paint, but my youngest daughter has allergies and I didn't want to take a chance that all the dust from the chalk would make it worse.  After doing some research, I decided on a dry erase space.  I didn't want just a plain old rectangle, so I started playing with some designs.  I wanted something to cover a large amount of space to draw on but also something fun. I decided on a princess crown. I wanted to paint the base and cut out some white gloss vinyl balls to put on top of the crown.  Hubs cut out the 3 circles with the Silhouette.
I purchased a pint of Rust-Oleum Specialty 27-oz. Specialty White Gloss Dry Erase paint from Home Depot for $19.98.  The rest of the stuff I had on hand from previous projects. First Hubs took all the wall plates off.  Then he measured the area to paint and marked the points of the crown. I taped the outside edges of the crown using blue painter's tape. 

Once the tape was secure, Hubs and I took turns rolling the paint on with a small foam roller.  It was very thin paint.  We could still see some green from the wall after the recommended 2 to 3 coats so we decided to use the entire can.  6 coats later, we have this shining beauty!!

When we began this project, I didn't think we would be putting 6 coats of paint on. With 6 coats of paint, the crown is raised off the wall slightly so if you run your finger along the outside of the crown, you can feel the painted edge.  We stuck the balls on, but since it is slightly raised, you can see the indention of the pointed part of the crown.We could razor cut around it, but it's not that big of a deal for us. In hindsight, I would have cut circle stencils out with the Silhouette, stuck them on and painted the balls on.

I am not sure why I didn't take a picture of the crown after we stuck the balls on.  I certainly had enough time since we had to wait 3 days for it to dry completely per the instructions. There was a lot of "Mommy, is it ready yet?" and "Mommy, has it been 3 days???"

Here is what the crown looks like today after many uses. 

Your wall around the dry erase board will get smudged, but it's well worth it when your little ones show you their masterpieces!  My 5 year old loves to draw this picture. We showed it to her on the Internet one evening and she laughed hysterically.  It shows up every now and again on the drawing board.  ;)  I have to admit, it is pretty funny!

Here are some things we learned that I hope will be helpful to you.
  1. Test your dry erase markers out on a small area before using it.  The girls have had portable dry erase boards in the past where some markers they used left permanent marks. We tested ours along the outlet edges, so if by chance they left permanent marks, they would be hidden by the outlet covers.  If you don't want to test it on the wall, any dry erase board will work to test the markers. The dollar stores usually sell cheapo ones.  
  2. Using a dry eraser does not remove the ink very well.  We remove our ink with rubbing alcohol in a mini sprayer. Be sure to keep it out of reach of small children. We just spritz the area we want to clean before using our dry erasers.  This leaves a lot of ink behind but the girls don't mind it for everyday use.  When I want to really clean it, I spray with alcohol and use an old cotton t-shirt to wipe it off.  This gets the ink off pretty good with not a lot of elbow grease.  
  3. Ask the kids BEFORE you erase their artwork.  
  4. Most of all, have some fun family time.  We like to play a game where one person starts a picture, then we take turns adding to it and guessing what the drawing will be. We have used it to do math problems, sight words, spelling, Tic Tac Toe, and the list goes on.