Day 3: Pretty Cork Boards

On Day 3 of #100DaysNoTV I took ordinary cork boards and used a simple technique to brighten them up. Having previously done this for our boys’ playroom to display their artwork, I thought it would be lovely to make a couple more – this time for the grown-ups.

For this activity I used cheap cork boards from our local Wilko store that are just the job. They measure 40cm by 30cm. They’re a really handy size if you have limited space to hang them. If you have more space you can hang multiple boards together.

For the boys’ cork boards I used two pieces of fabric that I bought from the craft section of Ely’s City Cycle Centre (“more than just a bike shop…” ). This time I had the perfect excuse to visit Ely’s amazing sewing shop, Sew Much To Do, to buy the new fabric I needed.

what will you neeD?

Cork board
Fabric (big enough to fold around 5cm of fabric over each edge of the board)
Staple gun (see below for alternative fixing options)
Cup of tea (optional)

We recently bought a staple gun which made the job very easy. You could use a hammer and small tacks or perhaps some glue that’s suitable for fabric. I wouldn’t recommend using drawing pins as these can be difficult to push into the edge of the board, and your thumbs won’t thank you for it!

In preparation for today, I spent a happy hour in Sew Much To Do. As you walk in you’re met with a beautiful kaleidoscope of colour. It would have been very easy to come away with far more fabric than I needed. But, I stayed focused and came away with just two pieces!

I bought ‘fat quarters’ which are pieces of fabric that are ready-cut. They measure roughly 18” by 22” (45.5cm by 56cm). Fortunately, they are the perfect size for my cork boards; plenty of overlap to neatly fold over the edges of the boards.

how to do it

Armed with my staple gun, materials and a cup of tea, I got on with transforming the boards. Now, this activity is relatively easy to do, but not that easy to describe. So, please bear with me! I’ve taken images of each step, which I hope will help.

You might need to give the fabric a quick iron if there are any creases. The final result will look much better.

Step 1: Lay your fabric face down on the surface, and place your cork board onto the middle of the fabric, also face down
Step 2: Fold the top edge of the fabric over the board, and make creases where the fabric meets the side edge of the board
Step 3: From the corner, fold the fabric down towards the board’s edge into a triangle, and make a crease to keep it there – just like you would if you were wrapping a present

Step 4: Keeping the fabric tight to the board, fold the side over the board and staple (or use your preferred fixing method)
Step 5: Repeat on the other corners and add extra staples along the edges, wherever you feel they’re needed
Step 6: Turn it over and admire your pretty cork board 🙂

For a more tidy finish, you could glue any loose bits of fabric on the back. To be honest, I didn’t bother with this as those bits are hidden, and I was keen to get on with hanging it on the wall!

I recently discovered Damage-Free Hanging, by Command™, which are small strips with adhesive on one side and velcro on the other. Rob once used it to hold a computer monitor to an exhibition board, so I figured it would work on my cork boards! It did work well and meant the board is flat to the wall. You do need to make sure the fabric is well secured to the board first, otherwise it could sag away from the wall.

get creative

I kept my cork boards simple, but you could add some extra embellishment: ribbons across the board, either in a regular pattern or randomly; edge with ribbon or lace; place little bows in the corners; decorate with washi tape. It’s your board, have fun experimenting!

If  you don’t want to use regular drawing pins/push pins for fixing your pictures, etc., there are so many gorgeous alternatives. Why not find some decorative pins to make your board even more unique? I love these Liberty fabric pins by ThePatternRepeat and these polka dot buttons by FLOURISHandFLY. For a quick fix you could cover a drawing pin with washi tape.

lots of uses

I love how versatile these cork boards are, there are so many uses: displaying artwork, postcards or photos; pinning memos, To Do lists, lottery ticket; hanging jewellery; attaching grocery vouchers, recipes, the week’s menu; and so much more besides!

Do you have any creative ideas for decorating a cork board? What would you use it for? If you do try this activity, please do send me some photos. I would dearly love to see them. 🙂

100 Days Top Tips Day 3

Bye for now!

Emma heart pink slender

6 thoughts on “Day 3: Pretty Cork Boards

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