DIY + school supplies = best. thing. ever. Join me as I walk you through how to make your own Chalkboard notebook! Design your cover to suit your needs. Whether you’re in high school, college, or just like really awesome notebooks for whatever it is you do – THIS is the tutorial for you. Now let’s gather our supplies, make some table space, and get to work! You’re going to love being able to customize your notebooks – the only limit is your imagination!

Am I the only one that LOVES school supplies? I’m not even in school but I just love everything about it. And personalizing the things I buy to fit my own needs is pretty much the best part! I already had chalkboard paint and decided I should finally put it to use. Chalkboard notebooks are super easy to do and I can’t wait to show you how to make your own.

First off, you’ll need to gather your supplies:

  • Chalkboard paint – I had a couple of small bottles I had picked up from Target’s $1 section
  • Newspaper – to keep your work area clean and to use as a separation between the cover of your notebook and the pages while you paint
  • Chalk pens – I bought 3 different kinds in 2 different sizes and multiple colors (you could probably use regular chalk, too… but I didn’t test it). They weren’t too expensive – I got a set of 4 bigger tipped pens for about $5 at Walmart, a single white pen with a smaller tip in the $1 section at Target, and a more expensive pack of 8 the size of the white one from Target for about $15 on Amazon.
  • Paintbrush – I already had a 25 pack I bought when I did the DIY Lisa Frank phone cases awhile back
    • note: I recommend using one of the sponge brushes for this particular project.
  • Composition notebook – these are really cheap and available just about anywhere that has school supplies. I got mine at Walmart for less than $1.
DIY Chalkboard Notebook supplies

Supplies Needed: Chalkboard paint, chalk pens, paint brush, notebook, and newspaper

Chalkboard Notebook Step by step instructions:

Let’s get to the fun part then! Now, when I did this myself I didn’t lay newspaper out on my desk and I probably should’ve because well… that could’ve gone BADLY. Luckily I didn’t get any paint on my desk. If you think you’re going to spill at all – PLEASE spread newspaper or something else you can throw away across your work area. Don’t be like me.

After you’ve set up your work area, take a piece of newspaper or whatever you decide to use and place it in your notebook right behind the first page. Now, I’ll tell you why it should be after the first page. I didn’t think about it and I put it between the first page and the cover… well, the paper got stuck to the edges of the inside of the cover when the chalkboard paint dried. Oops! While it hardly did any damage this might bother some people.

Go ahead and get your paint and paint brush and cover the entire front cover in paint. I used one of the sponge brushes from my paintbrush set and feel like it was honestly the best choice for this project. It’s going to take 2-3 coats to completely cover it. Once you’ve finished the first coat let it dry for about 10 or so minutes before starting the next layer. I took this time to read Maze Runners. Make sure you’re layers aren’t super thick and are even all the way across. Your notebook will look similar to the photo below after your first coat.

DIY Chalkboard Notebook WIP

DIY Chalkboard Notebook WIP – after one coat of paint

Continue adding coats of chalkboard paint until you can no longer see the original design of the notebook. For me, it took 3 coats with about 10-15 minute dry times in between. Like I said, this gave me time to read my book, so I wasn’t complaining. This is what your notebook should look like when you’ve finished painting:

DIY Chalkboard Notebook - final coat of paint

DIY Chalkboard Notebook – after final coat of paint

Take out the newspaper from wherever you decided to put it while painting. If you put it between the cover and the first page be sure to carefully remove it because the paint has dried and it will stick to the inside of the cover. I only had a small part of the inside get torn a bit (see photo below) but it wasn’t too bad. If you put it between the first 2 pages it might be easier to just remove the first page. I can’t tell you for certain because I didn’t do that method, but you’ll know what will work best for your situation.

DIY Chalkboard Notebook - inside of cover

DIY Chalkboard Notebook – inside of cover

Now for the fun part! Take your chalkboard pens and get to designing your cover! Follow the instructions on your pens to get the chalk ink to the tip (all mine said to shake the pen and then press the tip down on paper that was on a flat surface until the color came out). Whether you write important reminders on the cover, your schedule, or just doodle is completely up to you! And don’t worry about messing up – if you need to remove something just take a wet paper towel and gently wipe it off, then take a dry paper towel and dry the spot. I had to do it a few times and it worked perfectly!

I got settled on my bedroom floor and went crazy on the cover! Though I will admit I do still need to go back and clean up a few spots but hey, it’s still AWESOME!

DIY Chalkboard Notebook - finished product

DIY Chalkboard Notebook – finished product

This DIY project is really easy to make and looks so cool in the end! I can’t wait to change up the cover as often as I feel like it! Join me on social media! Use the hashtag #littlestliarDIY to show me your chalkboard notebook designs! I can’t wait to see them! And tag me! I’m @aliceairbender on Twitter and @the_littlest_liar on Instagram! See you there!