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Design

How We Made A Custom Corkboard For Birdie’s Bedroom

Y’all, I’m not a big DIYer, but there is a huge hole in the market for large and fun bulletin boards so we had to tackle this one and I’m soooo proud of us. Of course, it ended up being a little expensive and quite laborious (like most good DIYs are – ask all the DIY content creators out there) but it was fun and not “hard”. Just required some time/money (but I have good ideas on how you could recreate it and be much cheaper). A huge thanks to Gretchen’s mom, a former teacher, for giving me this huge school-grade bulletin board.

The vintage bulletin board we had to work with (admittedly hard to find) was 6′ x 3′ – so she was BIG and also very heavy. Initially, I wanted to redo it and lean it vertically over here. But let’s just get into the DIY steps:)

Step One: Paint It White

We used acrylic paint in a creamy white (matched to the wallpaper) so that it doesn’t look too yellow or too stark.

Step Two: Prepping The Wooden Ball Knobs

Playing off the Jenny Lind bed style (yes, the one that I might change) I wanted this beaded frame look. So playful and fun (and certainly a trend). But there weren’t any fun cork boards that were big and so many that were small. So we would have to make it.

The Inspiration:

Rowan Valley Linden Bed | Jenny Lind Kids Maple Wood Spindle Bed | Webster Bed

Unfinished Wood Ball Knobs

Instead of buying 1/2 balls, we found these knobs that almost have that “full ball look” (surely there is a more technical term) and committed to gluing them on. You can also buy strips of this look which I think is a way more affordable and easier thing to execute, but we went full balls to the walls on this one (quite literally).

Gretchen spearheaded this one and shoved them all on popsicle sticks in order to be able to paint them completely. This was the summer so we could do it outside.

Step Three: Paint Them Pink

I should say that Birdie chose the color and I didn’t push back. It’s SO FUN and I knew this could be a place where she could assert her style. Obviously, spray painting was a VERY fun place to involve her (she helped with the gluing, too).

This setup made all our guests triple-take – WHAT IS THAT? They took two coats and we got super messy, but shoving them into cardboard worked really well.

Step Four: Paint The Frame Pink

Then we spray-painted the frame itself knowing that you’d see the frame underneath the balls.

Nothing makes me happier than doing these projects with my kids, in the name of work. And we all know that involving them in the design AND hard work/process makes them more invested and value it all more. Not all kids want to be as involved, but she does which is why the room has stayed so true to her.

Step Five: Glue On The Pink, Wooden Balls

Ok here’s where we learned a few things. We popped the wood off the popscilce sticks and got to glueing. We bought two different types of gorilla glue, not realizing that one would try clear and the other beige. We stopped after like 12 balls, but they were already adhered and you could see it outside of the pink.

It was hard to keep them super straight and not wonky along the frame. The clear glue totally worked, but don’t use any non-clear glue. We still plan to go back and touch up, but it requires us to spray the spray paint into a bowl and use a tiny brush. You can barely see it, but it does bug me.

Step Six: Add Art & Hang!

Originally I wanted to just lean it, but Birdie REALLY wanted it hung. I think in her mind it would look more like a grownup board and more professional if it’s hung on the wall horizontally, which I totally get.

We centered it on the wall, knowing that her round white art table (which isn’t my favorite but so functional) makes the whole thing work for her needs (and you bet the disco ball reflects the light so perfectly.

It turned out pretty darn cute. And as you can see, using the *almost* full wooden balls versus a 1/2 ball gave it more texture and dimensions. I also think the scale of them worked really well with the scale of the bulletin board. Projecting out further like they do helps it look really “high-end” and intentional.

*Pretty Photos by Kaitlin Green

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Sam
1 month ago

Cute idea!

Mary Evers
1 month ago

Such a fun project! How many cans of paint did it take for your size bulletin board?

hickenack
1 month ago

Super cute and functional DIY!!!
Keep the Jenny Lind bed!
(I would have used hot glue for this project…)

KT
1 month ago

1/2″ thick foamcore wrapped in fabric makes a great, light (as in not heavy so easier to hang) bulletin board.

Emily
1 month ago

I have found large bulletin boards like this at our local college surplus store for about $10 (open to the public one day a week). They are great in kids’ rooms!

Roberta Davis
1 month ago

Why not paint the board pink, too? Fun project! Birdie is getting so tall!

Amber
1 month ago
Reply to  Roberta Davis

I also think it needs some color

Courtney
1 month ago

I read this as “Barbie picked the color” and thought, that makes sense! It’s so cute … we did a similar one for my daughter but the trim really makes this one. My daughter is 10 now and has used hers for years.

Julie
1 month ago

This looks so cute! I love your DIY projects, especially ones that involve the kids. I worked with my toddler to use dot paint pens to color some photo frames that holds his monthly baby pictures. Making things together to display is really fun. Her room is looking so cute! I’ll be working with my older boy to redo his “big boy” room next year, so I’m following your progress in Birdie’s room.

1 month ago

OMG! You win mom of the year. That is a genius idea (that I am going to borrow).

Sarah F
1 month ago

Going full balls to the wall is my favorite part.

Karen Paul
1 month ago

Love it–such a great statement piece! Curious why you didn’t glue the balls on first and then spray paint the whole thing? Maybe because the paint may have pooled in the space between the balls?

Paula
1 month ago

I really like that you used the full balls! It’s a detail that DOES make a difference.

emily jane
1 month ago

Awesome!

Patti
1 month ago

Please, please keep the bed! Everyone has upholstered headboards but a Jenny Lind is a classic!

BETH
1 month ago

When I first saw it, I thought it was pom pom trim. That might be another way to get a similar effect. Very cute!

Lane
1 month ago

It works well here and I like how it color blocks some of the wallpaper because it starts looking more balanced and calm, at the same time there’s more interest.

Sarah
1 month ago

Fun project! Maybe it’s the angle or the lighting, but did you paint the base/door trim? They look creamier white and much better in these photos! (The window frame still looks stark white, but here’s hoping you paint them too! You had the creamy white paint matched to use for the bulletin board, so maybe you also had it for the trim!?!? Fingers crossed!

Sally
1 month ago

Did the balls just happen to fit perfectly on each side or is there a trick to ensuring you’re not half a ball under or over when you get to the end of a row?
PS, I personally love the colour. It brings out the pink butterflies but also just looks good. Sophisticated but cheerful. A paler colour like blue, green, etc could easily look twee.

Sarah
1 month ago

I love the “Jenny Lind” inspired trim work!

Patricia
1 month ago

At first glance, I thought you’d used fabric trim bobbles like these. https://th.bing.com/th?id=OPHS.l7vKMIK2T2G1ww474C474&w=56&h=56&o=5&pid=21.1

1 month ago

I did a very similar frame hack last month but I used half wood rounds which made it so simple. Would recommend that to anyone doing this. Here’s a quick IG reel if you are curious: https://www.instagram.com/reel/Cz0-ZCjIIPF/